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News & Events News Bites

News Bites from CDA Knowledge Networks – 2021/01/27

COVID-19 immunity task force unable to compile national data Globe and Mail, Jan 27: Epidemiologists have been frustrated by the lack of movement, insisting that keeping tabs on the prevalence of these coronavirus antibodies can improve public-health orders and inform vaccination plans. Read more

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Wednesday. cbc.ca, Jan 27:  Vaccination campaigns facing hurdles in several countries as supply concerns mount. Bill Gates says gap in vaccine rollout between rich and poor countries will be '6 to 8 months, best case'. Vulnerable Toronto neighbourhoods push for priority access to COVID-19 vaccines. Reports of seniors falling ill or dying after getting dose of COVID-19 vaccine don't tell the whole story. Trudeau says vaccine supply is in "good shape" even as EU threatens export controls on doses. Quebec curfew does not apply to homeless people, judge says. 14-day quarantine will be mandatory for all entering Manitoba. Read more

Canadian vaccine maker says it would be closer to rollout if it had more help from Ottawa. cbc.ca, Jan 26 [As It Happens]: As the European Union threatens to limit the export of COVID-19 vaccines, one company says it's time for the federal government to throw its support behind made-in-Canada alternatives. Read more and listen 7:09

Coronavirus: How are provinces using rapid tests? globalnews.ca, Jan 26: While 15.4 million of the 40.5 million rapid tests Ottawa procured are actually in Canada, when Global News canvassed all provinces and territories, only fewer than 1.3 million were reported as used or handed out to local health units. Read more

BRAUN: Ontario must do more for small businesses. torontosun.com, Jan 25: CFIB is calling on province to expand its small business grants immediately. ... All kinds of small business owners have been left out in the cold, ineligible for new grants and also ineligible for other provincial financial supports for property tax/energy rebates and PPE expenses. Then there are businesses still open but foundering because the lockdown keeps their customers away — massage therapists, dentists and other health professionals, for example, have far fewer clients, as people are told to stay home. Read more

Canada's vaccine deliveries further threatened as Europe mulls export controls. ctvnews.ca, Jan 26: Canada's anxiety-laden COVID-19 vaccine programs are facing further threats as Europe warns drug makers it might impose export controls on European-made vaccine doses. All of Canada's current vaccine doses from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are made in Europe, potentially putting at risk the entirety of Canada's vaccine deliveries. Read more

Made-in-Canada coronavirus vaccine to begin human clinical trials Tuesday. cbc.ca, Jan 26: CEO says it's the 1st time a vaccine designed and manufactured in Canada has begun clinical trial. ... Toronto-based Providence Therapeutics said three shots will be given to 60 adult volunteers at a clinical trial site in Toronto in the first phase of the trial on Tuesday. Read more

Canadians are still a long way from achieving herd immunity despite raging second wave: report. nationalpost.com, Jan 26: The uncertainty around how long antibodies can last in a person's bloodstream could partly explain why the spike in infections isn't reflected in the number of people with detected antibodies. ... The report, compiled by the Canadian Blood Services and Canada’s COVID-19 Immunity Task Force (CITF), found that only 1.5 per cent of healthy Canadians contain detected antibodies in the second wave of the pandemic. Read more

Racialized Canadians have some of the highest rates of COVID-19 infections in the country. Who can allay their doubts about taking the vaccine? theglobeandmail.com, Jan 26: Black and South Asian essential workers face some of the pandemic’s worst inequities in health care, labour and housing – and some are distrustful of the governments that plan to vaccinate them. Organizers are trying to make sure they buy in to a remedy that could save their lives. Read more

Experts say COVID-19 exposed fault lines in Canada. Here’s 5 big lessons we can learn. globalnews.ca, Jan 26: In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, The Canadian Press interviewed a group of leading Canadian experts in disease control and epidemiology and asked them what should be done to reduce the harms the next time a germ with similar destructive potential emerges. Here are the five most important lessons they offered. Read more

56 reports of 'adverse events' following COVID-19 vaccinations in B.C. bc.ctvnews.ca, Jan 25: After administering nearly 120,000 doses of the two COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Canada, British Columbia has now received 56 reports of "adverse events" following immunization. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry confirmed the numbers at her coronavirus briefing Monday, revealing 10 vaccine recipients reportedly suffered anaphylaxis after receiving their shot. Read more

Provinces sitting on millions in unspent federal pandemic spending, report says. nationalnewswatch.com, Jan 26: A new report on billions of dollars the federal government has sent to provinces to help safely reopen the economy suggests much of the money is sitting unused. Today's report also suggests that federal efforts to stretch the financial impact of those dollars is falling short as many provinces have bucked cost-matching requests. The analysis by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says six out of 10 provinces haven't spent all the money the federal government has sent their way, including for things like personal protective equipment. Read more

We’re Drinking More in the Pandemic—and It’s a Problem. thewalrus.ca, Jan 25: The alcohol industry is enjoying the profits, but public health is paying the price. Canadians have tried to cope with the miseries of COVID-19 in many ways, including spending more time on the internet, watching television, eating junk food, and playing board and video games. Another method, for at least 23 percent of Canadians, has been increased drinking throughout the pandemic. Read more

Ontario moves target for 1st doses of COVID-19 vaccines in LTC homes to Feb. 5, delays shots for health-care workers. thestar.com, Jan 25: Ontario moves target for 1st doses of COVID-19 vaccines in LTC homes to Feb. 5 — 10 days earlier than planned. … Giving the most vulnerable seniors in care homes priority for shots means delaying jabs for health-care workers, along with essential caregivers who are allowed to visit. Read more

Vaccine delays top agenda as Parliament set to resume after less-than-restful break. cbc.ca, Jan 25: Members of Parliament return to the House of Commons on Monday following a month-long break that was anything but restful to again face the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the threat of a possible election. Read more

One-year since first Canadian COVID-19 case: the CMA calls for a clear and focused plan ahead. cma.ca, Jan 25: ...“The virus continues to test us,” says Dr. Ann Collins, president of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA). “On average, our hospitals are dealing with almost 4,800 COVID-19 patients and we are seeing 141 daily deaths. We are in the midst of a national tragedy.” The CMA — representing the many hard-working physicians and medical learners on the front lines of this pandemic — is calling for a swift and sustained response. Read more

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Monday. cbc.ca, Jan 25: Analyis | 1 year after Canada's first coronavirus case, the COVID-19 pandemic rages on. As doctors urge more COVID-19 testing in schools, millions of rapid tests sit unused. Nunavut government reports 13 new COVID-19 cases in Arviat. "A whole new kind of tired": Pandemic leaves many unpaid caregivers without help. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stepping up efforts to track coronavirus mutations. Read more

Spartan Bioscience says Health Canada approves rapid COVID-19 test. cbc.ca, Jan 23: ... The test offers hope because it is one of only a handful of approved quick-result tests that uses the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing method — widely considered the gold standard for accurate COVID-19 diagnostics — at the point-of-care, without the need to send anything to a lab. The Spartan test isn't the first point-of-care PCR test to be approved in Canada, but it is the first to be made by a Canadian company with plans to sell solely to the Canadian market. Read more

Military to support vaccination efforts in 32 northern Ontario Indigenous communities. northernontario.ctvnews.ca, Jan 24: The move comes after a request from the province for assistance in getting vaccines to First Nation communities. The Canadian military has already helped with vaccines in the community of Nain in Newfoundland and Labrador. Ontario is reporting 2,417 new cases of COVID‑19 today and 50 more deaths related to the virus. Read more

Toronto’s Indigenous population largely overlooked in COVID-19 vaccine plans, doctors who work with them say. thestar.com, Jan 23: Toronto is home to the largest population of Indigenous people in the province — an estimated 70,000 people. Yet Dr. Janet Smylie, a Métis physician and Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health based at St. Michael’s Hospital, says she is drafting plans for vaccinating the city’s Indigenous population “on the side of my desk” in the absence of a clear strategy from the government. Read more

Binge-vaping, a dangerous new COVID-19 coping strategy among some teenagers in Montreal. montreal.ctvnews.ca, Jan 23: A pediatric addictions expert in Montreal is sounding the alarm about an increase in the number of teenagers referred to his clinic, who are vaping in a more harmful way during lockdown than in pre-pandemic times. He describes it as binge-vaping. Read more

Drug users at greater risk of dying as services scale back in second wave of COVID‑19. ctvnews.ca, Jan 24: ...Drug users face greater dangers as the second wave forces harm reduction sites and outreach programs to curtail their services, leaving at-risk communities out in the cold. Shorter hours, physical distancing measures and a curfew in Quebec, combined with a more lethal drug supply due to border closures, have sent addictions services scrambling to help users across the country as opioid overdoses and the attendant death toll continue to mount. Read more

COVID-19: Montreal Heart Institute concludes colchicine tablet is effective. montrealgazette.com, Jan 24: An extensive study launched by the Montreal Heart Institute last March has concluded the anti-inflammatory medication colchicine can reduce some of the complications associated with COVID-19. In a statement issued Friday, the institute described its findings as a “major scientific discovery” that could help millions of COVID-19 patients around the world. Read more

Sanofi to help produce millions of rival Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccines in Europe. thehill.com, Jan 27: …The French drugmaker in a statement Wednesday said it will provide BioNTech access to its "established infrastructure and expertise" in an unusual arrangement to produce over 125 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine in Europe. Read more

More than 100 million COVID-19 cases have now been recorded worldwide. ctvnews.ca, Jan 26: The world has now surpassed 100 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus. It's a figure that seemed almost unimaginable 12 months ago, when the first case had only just been confirmed on U.S. soil. A year later, the pandemic shows little sign of loosening its stranglehold on billions of people's everyday lives. Cases continue to rise sharply in some parts of the world, and every day the losses mount, as more people lose loved ones to COVID‑19, lose a business or lose their livelihood. Read more

Overnight Health Care. thehill.com, Jan 27: Biden takes steps to boost number of vaccine doses sent to states | CDC researchers find 'little evidence' of major school outbreaks, with precautions | Eli Lilly says antibody combo significantly cuts COVID-19 death risk. Read more

China deploys anal swabs to test for COVID-19. ctvnews.ca, Jan 27:  China has begun using anal swabs to test those it considers at high risk of contracting COVID-19, state TV reported, with social media users and travellers squirming over the invasive procedure which doctors say can be more effective in detecting the virus. Read more

VERIFY: Are post COVID-19 lungs worse than long-time smokers' lungs? wusa9.com, Jan 26: Our Verify team spoke with two pulmonologists to find out how lung damage of recovering COVID-19 patients compares to lung damage from habitual smoking. Read more

Moderna COVID-19 jabs can be spaced up to six weeks: WHO. ctvnews.ca, Jan 26: World Health Organization experts on Tuesday cautiously backed delaying second injections of the Moderna coronavirus vaccine in some situations, as they have already done for the Pfizer-BioNTech jabs. Read more

Coronavirus updates: As variants spread, countries pursue new round of travel restrictions. washingtonpost.com, Jan 26: The first U.S. case of the highly transmissible Brazil coronavirus variant has been identified in Minnesota. On Monday, Biden said he hopes the United States can vaccinate 1.5 million people per day, a major jump from his earlier goal of 1 million daily doses. The president iden plans to reopen federal marketplaces selling Affordable Care Act health plans, fulfilling a campaign promise after the pandemic cost millions of Americans their coverage. Read more

AstraZeneca says reports of 8% coronavirus vaccine efficacy in seniors are ‘incorrect.’. globalnews.ca, Jan 25: British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca is refuting German media reports claiming its coronavirus vaccine has an eight per cent efficacy rate in seniors as “completely incorrect.” … The pharmaceutical giant cited data published in the Lancet in November of 2020, saying one of their clinical trials found 100 per cent of older adults generated “spike-specific antibodies” after the second dose. Read more

Two common antibiotics not effective in early-stage COVID-19: study. ctvnews.ca, Jan 25: A British study found widely used antibiotics azithromycin and doxycycline were generally ineffective against early-stage COVID-19, as the search for treatments against the illness continues while vaccines are being rolled-out. The trial, backed by the British government and dubbed PRINCIPLE, found no beneficial effect in patients over the age of 50 who were treated with either of the antibiotics at home, Oxford University said on Monday. Read more

Moderna making booster shot to fight Covid-19 variants. politico.com, Jan 25: New strains of the coronavirus have emerged in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil, along with concerns that they could make vaccines less effective, and be more transmissible or deadly. Moderna is testing two booster-shot options — one specifically aimed at the South African variant and another to broadly fight new mutations. Laboratory research showed antibodies produced by the Moderna vaccine were six times less effective against the South African variant. Read more

Merck ends development of two potential COVID-19 vaccines. ctvnews.ca, Jan 25: Merck is giving up on two potential COVID-19 vaccines following poor results in early-stage studies. The drugmaker said Monday that it will focus instead on studying two possible treatments for the virus that also have yet to be approved by regulators. The company said its potential vaccines were well tolerated by patients, but they generated an inferior immune system response compared with other vaccines. Read more

Exclusive: U.S. goal to squeeze more COVID shots from Pfizer vials hampered by syringe production. reuters.com, Jan 25: The world’s largest syringe maker does not have the capacity to substantially increase U.S. supplies of specialty syringes needed to squeeze more doses from Pfizer Inc COVID-19 vaccine vials in the coming weeks, an executive said in an interview. Read more

Pfizer to supply up to 40 million doses of Covid vaccine to Covax global immunization program. cnbc.com, Jan 22: Pfizer will supply up to 40 million doses of its coronavirus vaccine to a global alliance aiming to provide poor nations with coronavirus vaccines, the World Health Organization said Friday. The deal will allow Covax — co-led by the WHO — to begin delivering vaccine doses to participating countries in February. The top official at the WHO has been critical of wealthy nations that have signed supply agreements with drugmakers for their initial doses of vaccines. Read more

Federal, provincial officials to discuss ways to counter anti-Indigenous racism in health care. cbc.ca, Jan 17: Indigenous leaders say they hope the talks don't get bogged down in jurisdictional squabbling. Federal ministers are holding virtual meetings with provincial and territorial health counterparts, First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation representatives and medical experts over the next two days to talk about anti-Indigenous racism in Canada's health care system. Read more

Consumer Confidence Still Low, But Hits Pandemic High. conferenceboard.ca, Jan 25: The Conference Board of Canada’s Index of Consumer Confidence edged up 4.9 points to 90.7 in January, exceeding last March’s level for the first time since the pandemic hit. Still, the index remains 25 per cent below its pre-pandemic level. Read more

Dartmouth vape shop co-owner seeks injunction against Nova Scotia’s vaping restrictions. globalnews.ca, Jan 25: The co-owner of a vape shop in Dartmouth is seeking an injunction against Nova Scotia’s newest restrictions on vaping, arguing they unfairly burden adults who are trying to kick a bad habit. Read more

The other pandemic: Once-treatable diseases are growing resistant to antibiotics. theconversation.com, Jan 24: While the development of new molecules is slower and slower, the acquisition of resistance by bacteria is becoming increasingly rapid. Read more

Saanich councillors call on feds to declare opioid crisis a national health emergency. vancouverisland.ctvnews.ca, Jan 25: With more than 1,500 British Columbians dying from suspected drug overdoses in the first 11 months of 2020, two Saanich councillors have brought forth a motion that demands the federal government declare the opioid crisis a national health emergency. Read more

Copycat pot edibles that look like candy are poisoning kids, doctors say. cbc.ca, Jan 25: Websites 'flagrantly' selling edibles that violate federal rules, lawyer says. Dr. Jane Pegg couldn't believe her eyes when she saw the pot edibles that had poisoned a two-year-old who had been rushed to the emergency room in October. "It so shocked and appalled me … the package looked almost identical to gummies that are sold as candies in the store," the Nanaimo, B.C., pediatrician said. Read more

SmileDirectClub Partners With Leading Dental Insurer Green Shield Canada. financialpost.com, Jan 27 [News Release]: Insurer is First in Canada to Cover Telehealth Pioneer's Clear Aligner Therapy In-Network, Expanding Access to Safe, Convenient and Affordable Premium Teeth Straightening. Read more

‘But I never smoked’: A growing share of lung cancer cases is turning up in an unexpected population. statnews.com, Jan 26: …Scientists disagree on whether the absolute number of such patients is increasing, but the proportion who are never-smokers clearly is. Doctors and public health experts have been slow to recognize this trend, however, and now there is growing pressure to understand how never-smokers’ disease differs from that of smokers, and to review whether screening guidelines need revision. Read more

TikTok is being used by vape sellers marketing to teens. ca.movies.yahoo.com, Jan 26: TikTok has a vaping problem. Although a 2019 U.S. law made it illegal to sell or market e-cigarettes to anyone under the age of 21, TikTok videos featuring top brands of disposable e-cigarettes and vapes for sale have been relatively easy to find on the app. Read more

Beverage Companies Weigh Viability Of Reduced-Sugar Drinks. jamaica-gleaner.com, Jan 27: New guidelines for sweetened beverages in schools and government health facilities took effect on January 1, but there is lingering uncertainty in the market as to whether reduced-sugar drinks can effectively compete against flavoured water beverages and plain water. Read more

Dr Tedros hails “landmark resolution” on oral health at the 148th session of the WHO Executive Board. fdiworlddental.org, Jan 25: …Member States passed a game-changing resolution on Oral health, spearheaded by the government of Sri Lanka. WHO Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called it a “landmark resolution” and congratulated Sri Lanka for their work to push the resolution forward. The resolution garnered broad and enthusiastic support from Member States across the globe. ...As FDI is in official relations with WHO, we were able to deliver a statement in support of the resolution; the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) also gave a statement, which echoed ours whilst emphasizing the importance of sound research to improve oral health outcomes worldwide. Read more

Fluoride Free NZ accepts Health Minister's call for fluoridation debate. stuff.co.nz, Jan 25: Anti-fluoridation organisation Fluoride Free NZ has heeded Health Minister Andrew Little's call for “a good public debate” on the possible fluoridation of public water supplies, saying it is well past time the public got to hear the “true science” on the issue. Read more

California’s ban on flavored tobacco sales blocked as referendum qualifies for ballot. latimes.com, Jan 22: A California law banning the sale of flavored tobacco products was placed on hold Friday after state officials said a referendum by the tobacco industry qualified for the November 2022 ballot. Read more

North Carolina AG Josh Stein calls for ban on menthol cigarettes. 23 states urge prohibition as public health benefit. thecharlottepost.com, Jan 24: North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein has joined 22 other states in calling on the Food and Drug Administration to prohibit menthol-flavored cigarettes as a public health benefit by decreasing youth smoking and the harm it causes communities of color, especially Black Americans. Read more

Dalhousie University – Current course offerings

McGill University – Continuing dental education

Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry University – Continuing professional development

Université Laval – Formation continue

University of Manitoba – Continuing professional development

Université de Montréal – Formation dentaire continue

University of Alberta – Program and courses

University of British Columbia – Calendar of courses

University of Saskatchewan – Continuing professional dental education

University of Toronto – Continuing dental education

2021

March 4-6: Pacific Dental Conference – 2021 Virtual Experience. Read more and register

March 13-16: “WE” 2021 ADEA Annual Session & Exhibition (Virtual). Read more

May 6-8: 2021 Ontario Dental Association Annual Spring Meeting (ASM21). Read more

Please let us know about upcoming continuing education meetings that could be of interest to Canadian dentists by emailing us at oasisdiscussions@cda-adc.ca

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