Posted on

The World Needs Syringes. He Jumped In to Make 5,900 Per Minute.

BALLABGARH, India — In late November, an urgent email popped up in the inbox of Hindustan Syringes & Medical Devices, one of the world’s largest syringe makers.It was from UNICEF, the United Nations agency for children, and it was desperately seeking syringes. Not just any would do. These syringes must be smaller than usual. They had to break if used a second time, to prevent spreading disease through accidental recycling.Most important, UNICEF needed them in vast quantities. Now.“I thought, ‘No issues,’” said Rajiv Nath, the company’s managing director, who has sunk millions of dollars into preparing his …

Read More

Posted on

Companies Put Return-to-Work Plans in Motion

A year and a pandemic ago, over 100,000 people filled the central business district in Charlotte, N.C., pouring out of offices, including several recently built skyscrapers, and into restaurants, bars and sports venues. Then as the coronavirus sent employees to their homes, much of the city center quickly went quiet and dark.The return of those employees to their offices has been halting and difficult. Last fall, Fifth Third Bank began bringing back workers, but soon reversed course. LendingTree, which is moving from the suburbs to the city, is waiting for the end of the school year. Wells Fargo has …

Read More

Posted on

Seniors Seeking Vaccines Have a Problem: They Can’t Use the Internet

Plenty of seniors do feel comfortable texting, tweeting and surfing the internet. But for those who do not, taking the time to learn a new skill often feels daunting, Mr. Kamber said. Older Adults Technology Services has taught 48,000 people how to get started online since the pandemic began, he said, and operates a tech support hotline. When vaccine sign-ups began, staff on the phones fielded thousands of questions about how to book appointments.Area Agencies on Aging, part of a national aging network funded by the federal government and overseen by the Administration for Community Living, are also helping out. …

Read More

Posted on

Future Vaccines Depend on Test Subjects in Short Supply: Monkeys

Mark Lewis was desperate to find monkeys. Millions of human lives, all over the world, were at stake.Mr. Lewis, the chief executive of Bioqual, was responsible for providing lab monkeys to pharmaceutical companies like Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, which needed the animals to develop their Covid-19 vaccines. But as the coronavirus swept across the United States last year, there were few of the specially bred monkeys to be found anywhere in the world.Unable to furnish scientists with monkeys, which can cost more than $10,000 each, about a dozen companies were left scrambling for research animals at the height of …

Read More

Posted on

With Vaccines in More Drugstores, Pharmacies Go on Hiring Sprees

“Since the vaccine got approved, our numbers have just gone through the roof,” said Scott Knoer, the association’s chief executive.Pharmacy technicians, too, are in high demand. They traditionally have done things like loading syringes and checking people in. Until recently, only a few states allowed the technicians to give shots. But the Trump administration in October issued guidance authorizing them to administer Covid-19 vaccines under the supervision of a pharmacist.While not all vaccine providers are letting technicians give the shots, the regulatory change is creating thousands of new vaccinators.Ms. Shah, the Walgreens executive, said the combination …

Read More

Posted on

Russian Campaign Promotes Homegrown Vaccine and Undercuts Rivals

Russian news outlets connected to election disinformation campaigns in the United States have set their sights on a new target: convincing Spanish-speaking countries that the Russian coronavirus vaccine works better than its American competitors, according to researchers and State Department officials.The Russian campaign has focused on Latin American nations, including Mexico, which this week signed a deal to acquire millions of doses of the Russian vaccine, and Argentina, which last month began vaccinating its citizens with it.Conducted on Spanish-language social media and reinforced by the official Twitter account of the Russian Embassy in Mexico City, the campaign signaled …

Read More

Posted on

China Wanted to Show Off Its Vaccines. It’s Backfiring.

China’s coronavirus vaccines were supposed to deliver a geopolitical win that showcased the country’s scientific prowess and generosity. Instead, in some places, they have set off a backlash.Officials in Brazil and Turkey have complained that Chinese companies have been slow to ship the doses and ingredients. Disclosures about the Chinese vaccines has been slow and spotty. The few announcements that have trickled out suggest that China’s vaccines, while considered effective, cannot stop the virus as well as those developed by Pfizer and Moderna, the American drugmakers.In the Philippines, some lawmakers have criticized the government’s …

Read More

Posted on

Has China Done Too Well Against Covid-19?

A columnist for The Paper, on online publication that takes on controversial subjects, recently argued that Chinese people’s intent to get vaccinated would only drop further as vaccination is rolled out, because they would feel even safer.Also remarkable: Only 16 percent of the Chinese respondents in the Ipsos-World Economic Forum survey who were vaccine-skeptics said they were skeptical because of concerns over the vaccines’ effectiveness — that was the lowest such percentage among all the groups surveyed.This fact is all the more noteworthy that China has been rocked by major food- and health-safety scandals over the years: involving rice …

Read More

Posted on

Frustrations Boil at Pace of Vaccinations at Long-Term Care Facilities

In mid-December, a top Trump administration official floated an enticing possibility: All nursing home residents in the United States could be vaccinated against the coronavirus by Christmas. “It’s really a remarkable, remarkable prospect,” Alex M. Azar II, the secretary of health and human services, declared.It turned out to be a fantasy.A month later, vaccinations of some of the country’s most vulnerable citizens are going more slowly than many state officials, industry executives and families expected. Their hopes had been buoyed when government officials said long-term care facilities would be at the front of the line for …

Read More

Posted on

A Second Economic Crisis for Biden, but a Different First Response

Mr. Biden has stressed that such aid will support increased consumer spending, but he and his team cast the goal of distributing the money in more human terms: to ensure as many Americans as possible avoid the scarring damage of homelessness, hunger and the virus itself.The Biden team and its allies are confident that, if they succeed, the economy will be poised for a roaring rebound. Other policymakers and forecasters, including Jerome H. Powell, the Federal Reserve chair, have predicted a swift rebound once the virus is under control.“The recovery from the Great Recession was delayed by years …

Read More