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COVID-19 Update

May 28, 2021
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The People Of Nepal Use Social Media To Get Help
What do you do when there’s a country-wide crisis and you can’t count on your government to help? You turn to each other and social media. That’s what’s happening in India and Nepal. Similar to India, a second wave of COVID-19 infections have caused Nepal’s healthcare system to break down. What does this mean? It means that there aren’t enough hospital beds for the sick or medical supplies, such as oxygen, for the people who need it. Without the government’s help, people are turning to social media to request and coordinate help for those who need it most.

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Good News: Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine Can Be Stored For Longer
Did you know that when the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was ready for mass distribution, one of the biggest concerns was that not every distribution center would have the proper equipment to store the vaccine? It’s true! Unlike other vaccines, such as the flu vaccine, the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine had to be stored at really, really cold temperatures. We’re talking -70°C until a few days before it’s ready for use. During those days, the vaccine could be stored in a regular refrigerator at 2-8°C, but for no more than five days. Now, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) says that the vaccine can be stored at regular refrigerator temperatures for thirty days. That’s great news! Why, you might be wondering? Because the longer vaccines can be stored, the less vaccines go to waste!

Another Promising Vaccine
As the world races to get people vaccinated against COVID-19, there continues to be problems with both the supply and distribution of vaccinations currently approved for use in various countries. So, it’s good news when another pharmaceutical company is seeing positive results from the mid-stage trials of their COVID-19 vaccine. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a British pharmaceutical company, has developed a COVID-19 vaccine that’s heading into its third phase of trials. If the outcomes are positive, there’ll be another vaccine available for the world to use in its fight against COVID-19.

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EU Says Welcome … If You’re Vaccinated
There’s good news to those who are fully vaccinated—the European Union (EU) welcomes you to visit. Yes, you heard that right! After a year of lockdowns and uncertainty, there seems to be a faint light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. Those who have been fully vaccinated with EU-approved vaccinations (that’s Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, and AstraZeneca) are now welcome to visit the twenty-seven countries that make up the EU. This is great news for those who miss traveling, but you might want to hold off on booking tickets because the EU hasn’t agreed on when they’ll be rolling out the red carpet to tourists. Either way, it’s a start and hopefully a sign that things are slowly but surely getting back to normal.