November 16, 2020

California pulling ’emergency brake’ to slow record surge of COVID cases

California pulling ’emergency brake’ to slow record surge of COVID cases

California is pulling the “emergency brake” and tightening restrictions for 94 percent...

Trump officials preparing to move forward with major step to lower Medicare drug prices

Trump officials preparing to move forward with major step to lower Medicare drug prices

Many last-minute Trump administration moves are likely to be strongly opposed by...

Moderna announced Monday morning that a preliminary analysis of its coronavirus vaccine candidate showed it was 94.5 percent effective at preventing illness, including severe cases.  The announcement comes one week after Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech announced their vaccine was over 90 percent effective, meaning there are now two vaccine candidates with very high levels of efficacy in interim analyses of clinical trial data  The Moderna vaccine is similar to the one from Pfizer/BionNTech, in that both are developed using mRNA instead of a live virus. The method is experimental, but experts said the fact that two separate candidates had results of over 90 percent efficacy is a cause for optimism.  “The light at the end of the tunnel just got even brighter,” tweeted Atul Gawande, a coronavirus adviser to President-elect Joe Biden, in reaction to Moderna’s announcement. “We may now have multiple, very effective vaccines distributing widely in spring and summer. Now we must pull together to get everyone we can through that tunnel alive and with jobs intact.”   Leg up: Moderna’s vaccine is slightly more effective than Pfizer’s, plus the data shared shows it also prevents severe illness, which is unknown about Pfizer. Most of all, storage and distribution ought to be easier because the vaccine doesn’t need the ultra cold storage that the Pfizer/BioNTech one requires.   The hard part: The coming months are still likely to be brutal, before the vaccine is widely available, as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations continue to rise heading into winter. Widespread vaccination likely won’t be available until 2021, although initial doses may be injected into high priority groups as early as next month. Biden has emphasized this point in multiple speeches, making it clear that public health measures like wearing masks and keeping physically distant are the best tools available

Moderna announced Monday morning that a preliminary analysis of its coronavirus vaccine candidate showed it was 94.5 percent effective at preventing illness, including severe cases. The announcement comes one week after Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech announced their vaccine was over 90 percent effective, meaning there are now two vaccine candidates with very high levels of efficacy in interim analyses of clinical trial data The Moderna vaccine is similar to the one from Pfizer/BionNTech, in that both are developed using mRNA instead of a live virus. The method is experimental, but experts said the fact that two separate candidates had results of over 90 percent efficacy is a cause for optimism. “The light at the end of the tunnel just got even brighter,” tweeted Atul Gawande, a coronavirus adviser to President-elect Joe Biden, in reaction to Moderna’s announcement. “We may now have multiple, very effective vaccines distributing widely in spring and summer. Now we must pull together to get everyone we can through that tunnel alive and with jobs intact.” Leg up: Moderna’s vaccine is slightly more effective than Pfizer’s, plus the data shared shows it also prevents severe illness, which is unknown about Pfizer. Most of all, storage and distribution ought to be easier because the vaccine doesn’t need the ultra cold storage that the Pfizer/BioNTech one requires. The hard part: The coming months are still likely to be brutal, before the vaccine is widely available, as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations continue to rise heading into winter. Widespread vaccination likely won’t be available until 2021, although initial doses may be injected into high priority groups as early as next month. Biden has emphasized this point in multiple speeches, making it clear that public health measures like wearing masks and keeping physically distant are the best tools available

President-elect Joe Biden warned Monday that “more people may die” from COVID-19 if the...

Moderna says coronavirus vaccine is 94.5 percent effective

Moderna says coronavirus vaccine is 94.5 percent effective

Moderna announced Monday morning that a preliminary analysis of its coronavirus vaccine candidate showed it...

Tech advocates in Washington are eager to work with the incoming Biden administration and reverse many of President Trump’s immigration policies, especially those that created barriers for high skilled visa holders.  Some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley have clashed with the Trump administration in court, suing over his executive orders restricting immigration for foreign workers. They’re now making clear to the next administration that nixing Trump’s actions are the industry’s top priority for 2021.  The Trump administration announced new immigration rules last month designed to make it more difficult for skilled workers to acquire visas. The rules tighten requirements for employers who hire workers on H-1B visas, which are set aside for skilled workers, particularly in the technology field.  TechNet, a group of industry executives from companies like Amazon, Apple, Cisco, Dell, Facebook, Google, filed amicus briefs is support of lawsuits challenging the new rules.  If they’re unsuccessful, they hope President-elect Joe Biden will rescind or revise the rules.  “They’ve indicated they are going to be very different than the Trump administration on high-skilled immigration, immigration in general,” said TechNet CEO Linda Moore. “High-skilled immigration…has led to so much growth and technological superiority and competitiveness for the U.S.”

Tech advocates in Washington are eager to work with the incoming Biden administration and reverse many of President Trump’s immigration policies, especially those that created barriers for high skilled visa holders. Some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley have clashed with the Trump administration in court, suing over his executive orders restricting immigration for foreign workers. They’re now making clear to the next administration that nixing Trump’s actions are the industry’s top priority for 2021. The Trump administration announced new immigration rules last month designed to make it more difficult for skilled workers to acquire visas. The rules tighten requirements for employers who hire workers on H-1B visas, which are set aside for skilled workers, particularly in the technology field. TechNet, a group of industry executives from companies like Amazon, Apple, Cisco, Dell, Facebook, Google, filed amicus briefs is support of lawsuits challenging the new rules. If they’re unsuccessful, they hope President-elect Joe Biden will rescind or revise the rules. “They’ve indicated they are going to be very different than the Trump administration on high-skilled immigration, immigration in general,” said TechNet CEO Linda Moore. “High-skilled immigration…has led to so much growth and technological superiority and competitiveness for the U.S.”

Democratic senators on Monday urged Facebook to take action against anti-Muslim bigotry...

Sacramento, CA – November 16, 2020 – California Retailers Association President Rachel Michelin issued the following statement in response to the latest round of statewide closures and tightening of restrictions within California’s tiered system known as the Blue Print for a Safer Economy.  “As the association representing all aspects of retail in our state, we recognize it is imperative that we as Californians continue to follow the latest health and safety guidelines issued statewide and nationally despite growing COVID-19 fatigue and resentment. California’s retail industry’s top priority is ensuring the health, safety and well being of employees and customers.  That said, the vast majority of cases, we are being told, by statewide and numerous county health officials are coming from social gatherings- not businesses being open.  Yesterday’s Associated Press story quoted Solano County Public Health Officer Dr. Bela Matyas attributing the vast majority of their cases tracing back to casual gatherings. “We’ve had no clusters we can attribute to restaurants, to gyms, to retail shopping, to any of those facilities,” Matyas said. “Because they have licensure on the line, they do a good job of enforcing social distancing.”  While we continue to work with the Governor’s office to get clarity on the data that justifies this latest round of restrictions, CRA urges everyone visiting retail stores during the busier holiday season to follow current CDC guidelines: wear a mask, maintain physical distance of at least six feet from others, repeatedly wash your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds and keep hand sanitizer with you at all times. These mandates are for everyone’s benefit.  CRA has developed a number of Safe Shopping best practices that we continue to share with retailers large and small as well as consumers to protect from the spread of COVID-19. The association will soon be launching a Safe Shopping For All holiday video outlining these best practices as we also continue to collect Safe Shopping commitments from retailers, chambers of commerce and other businesses throughout the state. It is imperative that we continue to protect the health and viability of not only each other, but our economy.”

Sacramento, CA – November 16, 2020 – California Retailers Association President Rachel Michelin issued the following statement in response to the latest round of statewide closures and tightening of restrictions within California’s tiered system known as the Blue Print for a Safer Economy. “As the association representing all aspects of retail in our state, we recognize it is imperative that we as Californians continue to follow the latest health and safety guidelines issued statewide and nationally despite growing COVID-19 fatigue and resentment. California’s retail industry’s top priority is ensuring the health, safety and well being of employees and customers. That said, the vast majority of cases, we are being told, by statewide and numerous county health officials are coming from social gatherings- not businesses being open. Yesterday’s Associated Press story quoted Solano County Public Health Officer Dr. Bela Matyas attributing the vast majority of their cases tracing back to casual gatherings. “We’ve had no clusters we can attribute to restaurants, to gyms, to retail shopping, to any of those facilities,” Matyas said. “Because they have licensure on the line, they do a good job of enforcing social distancing.” While we continue to work with the Governor’s office to get clarity on the data that justifies this latest round of restrictions, CRA urges everyone visiting retail stores during the busier holiday season to follow current CDC guidelines: wear a mask, maintain physical distance of at least six feet from others, repeatedly wash your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds and keep hand sanitizer with you at all times. These mandates are for everyone’s benefit. CRA has developed a number of Safe Shopping best practices that we continue to share with retailers large and small as well as consumers to protect from the spread of COVID-19. The association will soon be launching a Safe Shopping For All holiday video outlining these best practices as we also continue to collect Safe Shopping commitments from retailers, chambers of commerce and other businesses throughout the state. It is imperative that we continue to protect the health and viability of not only each other, but our economy.”

National security adviser Robert O’Brien said that Chinese telecommunications company Huawei is...

CRA Issues Statement in Response to Latest Round of COVID-19 Restrictions

CRA Issues Statement in Response to Latest Round of COVID-19 Restrictions

Sacramento, CA – November 16, 2020 – California Retailers Association President Rachel Michelin...