Coronavirus Vaccine Live Updates: Eli Lilly says its drug can cut hospitalizations by 70%

New York News
NEW YORK (WABC) — Drug company Eli Lilly now says its COVID treatment can help save lives, as vaccines work to help slow the pandemic.

The company says its cocktail drug approved by the FDA last year cuts hospitalizations by 70% for high-risk patients.

The drug is a monoclonal antibody, that mimics one of the natural antibodies the immune system uses to fight off the virus.

Former President Trump and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie all received monoclonal antibodies after they were diagnosed with the virus.

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Here are more of today’s headlines:

January becomes deadliest month for COVID-19 in US with nearly 80,000 lives lost
January has already become the worst month for US COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

As of Tuesday, there have been more than 79,000 coronavirus fatalities, topping the previous record set in December by more than a thousand, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

The grim milestone underpins the growing demand from state officials for more vaccines so that Americans can be inoculated more quickly.

US ‘actively looking’ at requiring COVID testing before domestic flights
The Biden administration is “actively looking” at requiring COVID-19 tests before domestic flights, a senior Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official said on Tuesday.

This would be an expansion of the administration’s mandatory testing requirement for U.S.-bound travelers that took effect on Tuesday. All travelers flying into the U.S. must now provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test, taken no more than three days before their flight, or they will be denied boarding.

Avoid preventive pain relievers before getting a COVID-19 vaccine: Experts
COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are being offered to an increasing number of people. Vaccine recipients typically experience minimal side effects — the most common being temporary pain and swelling at the injection site, fevers, chills, tiredness, muscle aches and pains and headaches.

While these side effects are generally a minor nuisance to most people, some attempt to prevent them by taking common over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (e.g., Motrin, Advil) beforehand. However, experts said these medications might not just dull the pain, but they may dull the vaccine from fully working.

Hand sanitizers from Mexico given FDA ‘import alert’ due to methanol risk

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is taking a careful look at alcohol-based hand sanitizers coming from Mexico.

The federal agency has placed these products on a countrywide “import alert,” CNN reported. They say some of the products have been labeled as containing ethanol, but they tested positive for methanol.

In-person learning during COVID pandemic is possible with the right precautions, CDC researchers say
Many parents and caregivers remain worried about the safety of their children in schools amid the coronavirus pandemic, but experts from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that with the right mitigation measures, there is a path to low-risk, in-person learning.

Experts have stressed the importance of in-person learning for students’ development and access to essential services. On the other hand, Covid-19 case, hospitalization and death rates remain high across the nation.

What we know so far about COVID-19 variants worldwide
Scientists around the world are on the lookout for new COVID-19 variants, which are caused by mutations of the virus when its replication machinery makes an error. Experts say these mutations and the new variants are normal and to be expected.

In recent months, so-called variants of concern have been identified in the U.K., South Africa, Brazil and in the U.S. And it’s not a coincidence they’re appearing in these countries, which have been overwhelmed by the sheer number of COVID-19 cases.

No Mardi Gras parades, so thousands make ‘house floats’
This year, the familiar phrase down south will have to change from “Laissez le bon temps rouler” to “Que les bons moments roulent malgré la pandémie.”

Let the good times roll despite the pandemic. All around New Orleans, thousands of houses are being decorated as floats since the coronavirus outbreak canceled Mardi Gras parades that are usually mobbed by crowds during the Carnival season leading to Fat Tuesday.

NY, NJ variant cases
There have been six cases of the COVID variant found in New Jersey, with one fatality. The person who died was said to have pre-existing conditions. In New York, there have been 42 cases.

New antibody therapies may cut deaths, reduce exposure to COVID-19, data shows
New results extend hopes for drugs that supply antibodies to fight COVID-19, suggesting they can help keep patients out of the hospital and possibly prevent illness in some uninfected people.

Eli Lilly said Tuesday that a two-antibody combo reduced the risk of hospitalizations or death by 70% in newly diagnosed, non-hospitalized COVID-19 patients at high risk of serious illness because of age or other health conditions. All 10 deaths that occurred in the study were among those receiving placebo rather than the antibodies.

Nassau County schools to resume high-risk sports as early as next week
Nassau County officials laid out a plan to get student-athletes back on the fields and courts during the coronavirus pandemic. With Governor Andrew Cuomo’s announcement on high-risk school sports being able to resume with proper safety guidance in New York, Nassau County says their 56 independent districts can resume sports such as wrestling, basketball and competitive cheer as early as next week.

Gov. Murphy applauds COVID vaccine supply increase, but says it’s far from enough
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy is applauding a 16% increase in supply of vaccines to the state, but says it’s far from enough. Right now, more than 2 million people are pre-registered for the vaccine, but the state will only receive about 130,000 doses a week.

NYC getting more Moderna vaccine
Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the federal government has promised New York City 30% more of the Moderna vaccine. That increases the city’s weekly supply of COVID vaccines by 17,000 doses. New York City has administered 673,405 vaccines so far.

Cuomo lifts some restrictions
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo lifted COVID restrictions in some of the state’s orange and yellow zone micro-clusters. He said that only a few yellow zones remain.
But in New York City, Cuomo has already said restrictions are not going to change, leaving restaurants without indoor dining. The governor said the state will have a plan for NYC restaurants by the end of the week.
That has restaurant owners in the city up in arms. The New York City Hospitality Alliance says it will be filing lawsuits.

Top 7 COVID vaccine questions answered
You had questions about COVID-19 vaccines and 7 On Your Side is getting you answers from doctors on the front line of the pandemic.

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