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FDA panel to review Merck’s COVID pill

By MATTHEW PERRONE AP Health Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — An experimental COVID-19 drug that could soon become the first U.S.-authorized pill to treat the coronavirus faces one final hurdle Tuesday: A panel of government experts will scrutinize data on the medication from drugmaker Merck. The Food and Drug Administration is asking its outside experts whether…

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Supply chain problems hit charities’ holiday gifts for children

With less than four weeks to go until Christmas, Kristyn Begari has been rushing to find enough doll styling heads to give to kids in need. But, the purchasing coordinator for the California-based nonprofit Family Giving Tree says it’s been difficult to find them, or racially diverse Barbies or Disney princess dolls. Others charities who…

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Putin warns West: Moscow has ‘red line’ about Ukraine

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday sternly warned NATO against deploying its troops and weapons to Ukraine, saying it represents a red line for Russia and would trigger a strong response. Commenting on Western concerns about Russia’s alleged intention to invade Ukraine, he said that Moscow is equally worried about NATO drills…

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Why we’re using filmmaking to encourage vaccination by Black and Latino Angelenos

Jeremy Kagan University of Southern California (THE CONVERSATION) People have recognized the power of storytelling for thousands of years. The Bible relies on parables like the prodigal son because stories successfully convey the underlying message in a memorable way that’s easy to pass along to future generations. But when public health leaders and medical professionals…

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Omnicron was in Netherlands days earlier than first thought

By RAF CASERT Associated Press BRUSSELS (AP) — The omicron variant was already in the Netherlands when South Africa alerted the World Health Organization about it last week, Dutch health authorities said Tuesday, adding to fear and confusion over the new version of the coronavirus in a weary world hoping it had left the worst…

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Barbados says goodbye to queen, transforms into republic

By DÁNICA COTO Associated Press SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Barbados stopped pledging allegiance to Queen Elizabeth II on Tuesday as it shed another vestige of its colonial past and became a republic for the first time in history. Several leaders and dignitaries, including Prince Charles, attended the ceremony that began late Monday in…

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Biden pushes shots as variant spreads

ZEKE MILLER Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will urge Americans to get vaccinated including booster shots as he seeks to quell concerns Monday over the new COVID-19 variant omicron, but he won’t immediately push for more restrictions to stop its spread, his chief medical adviser said. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top…

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Food, gas prices pinch families as inflation surges globally

JUSTIN SPIKE, PAUL WISEMAN and VANESSA GERA Associated Press BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — From appliance stores in the United States to food markets in Hungary and gas stations in Poland, rising consumer prices fueled by high energy costs and supply chain disruptions are putting a pinch on households and businesses worldwide. Rising inflation is leading…

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