Health news roundup: Britain’s healthcare backlogs reach record highs; J&J Ends Global Sales of Talc-Based Baby Powder and More

Here is a summary of health news briefs.

UK healthcare backlogs reach record highs

The number of people in England waiting to start routine hospital treatment has risen to its highest level since records began 15 years ago, while victims of crime face long waits for their cases to be heard heard by a court. As members of the Conservative Party this summer chose a new leader to succeed Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the problems his successor will face are piling up.

J&J ends global sales of talc-based baby powder

Johnson & Johnson will stop selling talc-based baby powder globally in 2023, the drugmaker said on Thursday, more than two years after ending U.S. sales of a product that garnered thousands of complaints. consumer safety lawsuits. “As part of a global portfolio assessment, we have made the business decision to transition to an all-cornstarch baby powder portfolio,” he said, adding that baby powder at cornstarch base is already sold in countries around the world.

GSK, Sanofi and Halon collapse over Zantac litigation concerns

Shares of GSK, Sanofi and Halon fell sharply on Thursday, following declines earlier this week, amid growing investor concerns over U.S. litigation centered on a heartburn drug containing a likely carcinogen. Shares of GSK fell more than 10%, shares of Sanofi fell about 3.3% and shares of Haleon fell nearly 5% at the close of trading Thursday.

Senate Finance Committee Reviews Amgen Taxes, Expands Investigation into Drugmakers

The US Senate Finance Committee is expanding its investigation into the tax practices of US drugmakers to include Amgen Inc, according to a letter sent Thursday by the committee’s chairman, Sen. Ron Wyden. Amgen is already in the crosshairs of the US Internal Revenue Service over its tax practices, particularly how it allocates profits between the US and Puerto Rico.

Novartis reports that Zolgensma caused two deaths from liver failure

Novartis AG on Thursday reported two patient deaths from acute liver failure following treatment with Zolgensma gene therapy used to treat spinal muscular atrophy. The company has notified health authorities in the markets where the drug is sold, including the FDA, and notified affected healthcare professionals as an additional step.

FDA chief backs alternative way to inject Bavarian Nordic’s monkeypox vaccine

The head of the United States Food and Drug Administration on Thursday defended a plan to deliver Bavarian Nordic’s monkeypox intradermally after the company raised doubts about the safety of the method, citing a lack of data. The company had said on Tuesday that there was evidence that a shot of Jynneos between the layers of the skin could lead to increased reactions compared to the approved method of injecting it under the skin.

Several cities in China add COVID restrictions while millions are still under lockdown

Several COVID-hit Chinese cities from east to west on Thursday imposed new restrictions and closures on their populations to contain outbreaks that again threaten to disrupt local economies. Reducing people’s unnecessary travel for a few days – a softer type of lockdown – as soon as dozens of new cases emerge is a key practice in China’s “dynamic COVID-zero” strategy. The goal is to avoid turning efforts to halt an outbreak into the protracted nightmares seen in Shanghai and Wuhan.

Long-Rising COVID Risk for Unvaccinated Children; home antibody test shows promise

Here is a summary of some recent studies on COVID-19. They include research that deserves further study to substantiate the findings and that has not yet been certified by peer review. Unvaccinated children have a higher risk of long COVID

Spain asks EMA to allow ‘dose saving’ for monkeypox vaccine

Spain has asked the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for permission to give more people a smaller dose of monkeypox vaccine, an approach known as “dose-sparing” to distribute limited supplies where possible, the health ministry said. The country has the second highest number of monkeypox infections in the world outside areas where it is endemic.

US CDC no longer recommends quarantining students for exposure to COVID-19

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will no longer recommend quarantines or testing programs to stay in schools or daycares for people exposed to COVID-19, the agency said in updated guidance Thursday. . The agency also said it no longer recommends quarantining unvaccinated people after exposure because about 95% of the U.S. population has either been vaccinated, already has COVID-19, or both.

(With agency contributions.)