New variant in NYC; CDC backs vaccine finder website — 7 COVID-19 updates

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New daily COVID-19 cases have started to level off over the past week in the U.S. after falling since peaking mid-January, according to data tracked by The New York Times. 

Six more updates:

1. The CDC has backed a vaccine finder website, VaccineFinder.org, to make it easier for Americans to find vaccination sites, reports The New York Times. Run by Boston Children's Hospital, the online portal allows the public to search for available vaccination sites and appointments. The developers hope to expand the program nationally to include nearly all vaccine providers who participate.   

2. Nursing home COVID-19 deaths have dropped more than 60 percent between late December and early February, reports The New York Times. Nursing home residents have been among the first Americans to be vaccinated, the main cause behind the decline. 

3. Moderna and Pfizer are set to test both their vaccines against coronavirus variants, the companies announced Feb. 24 and Feb. 25, respectively. Both companies plan to test their vaccine efficacy against different variants and work to develop booster vaccines. 

4. President Joe Biden will mark the 50 millionth COVID-19 vaccine administered in the U.S. during an event at the White House today, reports The Washington Post. 

5. A new coronavirus variant with a mutation that may hinder vaccines' efficacy is spreading in New York City, two separate research teams found, according to The New York Times. The B.1.526 variant was first detected in the city in November 2020. The research has not been peer reviewed or published in an academic journal. 

6. Connecticut will base its COVID-19 vaccine schedule mostly on age instead of prioritizing essential workers and people with chronic health issues when it expands vaccine eligibility next week, reports The New York Times. Effective March 1, all residents 55 and older will be able to receive the vaccine, marking a break from federal guidance.

Snapshot of COVID-19 in U.S.

Cases: 28,336,782

Deaths: 505,945

Americans receiving at least one vaccine dose: 45,237,143

Counts reflect Feb. 24 and Feb. 25 data from Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins University and the CDC.

 

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