November 13, 2019

Around the nation: The world's first Ebola vaccine is approved (and could soon be in the US)

Daily Briefing

    FDA has until March 2020 to issue a ruling on the vaccine, but a representative of the agency said it expects a decision "well ahead" of the March date, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from New Jersey, Minnesota, and Virginia.

    • New Jersey: The European Commission on Monday approved New Jersey-based Merck's Ebola vaccine, Ervebo. The vaccine is currently being administered in the Democratic Republic of the Congo through a "compassionate use" research protocol. World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said, "This is great news that will change Ebola prevention in the future and protect the vulnerable." FDA has until March 2020 to issue a ruling on the vaccine, but a representative of the agency said it expects a decision "well ahead" of the March date (Branswell, STAT News, 11/11).

    • Minnesota: Andrew Witty, CEO of Optum, will serve as president of UnitedHealth Group, the company announced Monday. Witty, who served as CEO of GlaxoSmithKline until 2017, will continue to serve as CEO Optum in his new role. (The Daily Briefing is published by Advisory Board, a division of Optum, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of UnitedHealth Group.) (Livingston, Modern Healthcare, 11/11).

    • Virginia: Bon Secours Mercy Health plans to buy three hospitals in the southeastern region of Virginia by the end of this year. The system plans to purchase three affiliates of Community Health Systems. The three affiliates are Regional Medical Center, Southampton Memorial Hospital, and Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center. The move will increase the health system's footprint in the region by about 500 beds (Sauers, The Virginian Pilot, 11/10).
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