Shortage of infant formula; Plus, new vaccine and child data from Moderna


InnovationRx is your weekly healthcare news digest. To receive it in your inbox, subscribe here.


There is a growing shortage of powdered formula milk in the United States, which not only affects infants, but also people with rare diseases and allergies who depend on formula milk as their main source of food. Twenty states had stock-out rates between 30 and 40 percent for the 3rd week of April, according to Datasembly. There were seven states, including New Jersey, Connecticut, Texas and Washington, with stock-out rates above 40%. One of the main triggers was a February reminder at the Abbott Nutrition facility in Sturgis, Michigan, following the deaths of two infants believed to be attributed to formula containing bacteria.

POLITICO reported this week that the situation is becoming more and more dire for patients suffering from health problems who depend on specialized formulas. “If this isn’t resolved quickly, I don’t know how my son will survive,” the parent of a 5-year-old boy with a rare disease told the outlet. Tuesday, the The FDA said it worked with Abbott and other manufacturers to try to increase the US supply of infant formula. “We recognize that many consumers have been unable to access the infant formula and essential medical foods they are accustomed to using and are frustrated by their inability to do so,” said FDA Commissioner Robert Califf. , in a press release. “We do everything in our power to ensure that there is a suitable product available where and when they need it.” The FDA and pediatricians warn parents against diluting formula to try to make it stretch more or attempt to make formula at home, such as Forbes reports contributor Nina Shapiro.

Abortion in numbers

Abortions have been legal in the United States for nearly 50 years, following the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade. That could change with judges set to overturn the landmark ruling, according to a leaked draft opinion, meaning abortion rights would be thrown out at the state level / Estimates vary as to how many people who get the procedure each year, with 630,000 on the low end to around 886,000 based on other models. The median cost of a medical abortion, which is just over half of the total, was $560 in 2020 without insurance. Learn more here.

Offers of the week

Billions for Biohaven: Tuesday, Pfizer announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Biohaven Pharmaceuticals in a transaction valued at approximately $11.6 billion. Biohaven is the maker of migraine therapy Nurtec and has a pipeline that includes an intranasal migraine spray and five other preclinical drugs.

“End-to-end pricing”: Turquoise Health raised a $20 million Series A round led by Andreessen Horowitz, who also participated in its $5 million round. The funding aims to explain its SaaS platform, which aims to streamline the process of contracting between suppliers and buyers with the goal of more transparent pricing in the healthcare system.

Buy Now Pay Later: Walnut, a buy now, pay later healthcare startup, raised $10 million in equity led by Gradient Ventures and $100 million in debt from Clear Haven Capital. The sector has come under increasing scrutiny, including an investigation by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced in December last year. “For health care it’s non-cyclical, and people always need it and I think being able to help patients with something they really need versus what they want is really helpful in a downturn. of the market”, co-founder Roshan Patel told TechCrunch.


the World Health Organization discussed on Tuesday taking action against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, including suspending all regional meetings, conferences and seminars in Russia until the conflict is resolved peacefully and relocating an office major regional in an area outside of Russia.

treasury secretary Janet Yellen testified that restricting access to abortion “would have very detrimental effects on the economy.” Additionally, see the Forbes tracking companies offering travel reimbursement and other benefits to employees in states that restrict access to abortion.

With a war chest of 120 million dollars, shiny seed uses artificial intelligence to unlock the hidden healing potential of plants by finding active compounds that could target specific conditions, such as obesity, diabetes and sleep disorders.

Simplified, a virtual platform focused on baby feeding services, announced that it had closed $6 million in its funding round led by Morningside Ventures and The Venture Collective.

Cigna posted nearly $1.2 billion in quarterly profits from increased health plan enrollment and growth in its Evernorth business, which includes drug benefit management.

Coronavirus Updates

A peer-reviewed study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine found that Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine is safe and effective for children ages 6-11. Two doses of the vaccine, the researchers found, produced a strong immune response similar to that produced by the vaccine in 18- to 25-year-olds, even though it’s only half the dose given to adults. Even a single dose, the researchers found, was 88% effective against symptomatic Covid infection and 63% effective against asymptomatic infection, although this study took place when the delta, not the omicron, was the dominant variant. The study also found that side effects, when they did occur, were mild and did not last long, showing that the vaccine has a good safety profile. Moderna applied to the FDA for emergency use authorization for this age group in March and also submitted data to the FDA for its vaccine for the 6 month to 5 year age group.

This is what one million Covid deaths look like in the US

According to official estimates from the CDC, Johns Hopkins University and other organizations that collect public health data, the United States is approaching the grim milestone of one million deaths from Covid-19. Here’s a breakdown of the numbers and stats demonstrating what that’s meant over the past two years. Learn more here.

Other coronavirus news

China faces an omicron “tsunami” that could overwhelm hospitals and kill more than 1 million people if it abandons its “zero-Covid” strategy, according to a new study published in natural medicine tuesday.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that the omicron variant may be less likely than other variants to cause loss of smella common symptom of Covid-19 with potentially serious implications for brain function, according to a new paper published this week.

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency and the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control have announced that face masks will no longer have to be worn at airports or on flights in Europe from next week.

Only 37% of american adults say they are bothered when people around them in public don’t wear masks, a drop of 35 percentage points since 2020, according to a new survey from Pew Research Group.

Through Forbes

The $2 billion emoji: Hugging Face wants to be the launch pad for a machine learning revolution

The worst of the stock market crash may yet be ahead, according to Wall Street’s ‘Fear Gauge’ signal

The Australian tech billionaire who bet big against coal, making enemies at home and admirers in the US

what else we read

Inside the opioid makers’ ‘pivot’ selling machine (The Washington Post)

Ripple effects of abortion restrictions confound miscarriage care (Kaiser Health News)

Cerebral receives grand jury subpoena from U.S. Attorney (Bloomberg)


Comments are closed.