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Four Big Questions About Omicron

Scientists around the world are racing to understand the Omicron variant, and there are some clearer signs than a week ago.

The New York Times answered four big questions about Omicron, with help from experts.

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Abbott Evaluating Omicron and Other COVID Variants to Ensure Test Effectiveness

Abbott has been intently monitoring the mutations of COVID-19 so we can ensure our tests can detect them. We have already conducted an assessment of the Omicron variant and we’re confident our rapid and PCR tests can detect the virus. While the Omicron variant contains mutations to the spike protein, Abbott’s rapid and molecular tests – antigen and PCR – do not rely on the spike gene to detect the virus.

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What to know about omicron, the new COVID variant

The World Health Organization announced Friday that it deems this strain, B.1.1.529, a variant of concern, and has named it omicron. It’s the first new variant of concern since delta.

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Do COVID-19 At-home Test Kits Expire?

Rapid at-home COVID-19 tests (or rapid antigen tests) have become increasingly popular over the past few months. These tests can be bought over-the-counter and administered at home, providing results in 30 minutes or less. But do they have a shelf life?

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The Rapid Antigen Test: What Is It, and How Does it Work?

Recent weeks have seen a surge in demand for COVID-19 tests across the U.S., fueled in large part by President Biden’s mandate for weekly testing for unvaccinated employees at businesses with more than 100 employees. Specifically, employers are looking for the Rapid Antigen test, which yields results in minutes and can be administered almost anywhere including in clinics, pharmacies, offices and at home.

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2 Million At-Home COVID-19 Tests Are Being Recalled Due to False Positives, FDA Warns

Ellume is recalling 2.2 million of its at-home COVID-19 tests, according to a recall notice shared by the FDA. So far, 35 false positives have been reported.

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OSHA’s vaccine rule is on hold. Employers urged to still comply

Businesses across the U.S. are facing uncertainty over the Biden administration’s new vaccine rule after a federal appeals court on Saturday temporarily halted the regulation. But legal experts say companies subject to the requirement should plan on complying with the 490-page order or risk being caught unprepared — and potentially face costly fines — if the rule moves forward.

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Biden’s vaccine rules for 100 million workers are here. These are the details

In early September, President Biden announced he was taking steps to get more Americans vaccinated and turn the tide on COVID-19.

On Thursday, the administration rolled out two of those steps — two different vaccine rules covering more than 100 million workers.

Here are the details:

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Medical exemptions to mandates? 5 answers from a legal expert

As private employers begin to widely adopt COVID-19 vaccine mandates, they are increasingly encountering resistance from employees who claim to have a medical reason for why they cannot be vaccinated. How are HR leaders, most of whom have no medical background themselves, supposed to evaluate these claims?

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6 experts on what Biden’s vaccine mandate means for HR

President Biden’s announcement that a majority of employers will need to mandate vaccines or weekly testing for all employees is making waves throughout the HR industry. Here are insights and suggestions for what HR leaders should do to respond right now.

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Unvaccinated Americans to face tighter COVID testing requirements in new US travel system

Nov. 8 will end the U.S. travel ban that has been in place for dozens of countries since the start of the pandemic. It will also make reentry more challenging for unvaccinated U.S. citizens and permanent residents.

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Everything HR Needs to Know about Biden’s Vaccine Mandate

Last month, President Joe Biden announced a series of plans to more aggressively tackle the COVID-19 pandemic—including a surprising announcement requiring scores of private employers to mandate their workers get vaccinated or undergo weekly COVID testing. What does the rule entail and how should HR leaders prepare?

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Abbott Panbio Rapid Test – The Test of Choice for International Use

ABBOTT RECEIVES CE MARK FOR ITS PANBIO™ RAPID ANTIGEN SELF-TEST, OPENING ACCESS THROUGHOUT EUROPE TO FAST, RELIABLE COVID-19 TESTING

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Don’t Get Taken by Those that Overcharge for Tests – like a $380 Rapid Test – Ouch!

A rapid Covid-19 test from a drugstore typically costs less than $20, Kliff writes. But GS Labs, which runs over a dozen testing sites across the United States, routinely charges $380 for such tests. The company has performed half a million rapid tests since the start of the pandemic and continues to run thousands of tests each day.

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Where Are the Tests?

You can’t shake a runny nose and start wondering whether it’s really because of allergies. Millions of Americans are grappling with situations like these, and rapid tests are a solution. But where the heck are they?

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Demand for COVID-19 testing is surging, and that includes rapid home antigen tests.

Demand for COVID-19 testing is surging, and that includes rapid home antigen tests. Experts say these tests can be very useful, but it’s important to know their limitations.

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This week, the Department of Defense (DOD) purchased $647 million of over-the-counter COVID-19 test kits.

This week, the Department of Defense (DOD) purchased $647 million of over-the-counter COVID-19 test kits. Great news in that these test kits will help citizens stay safe. Bad news in that the supply chain just got worse. UGH!

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Update: FDA No Longer Authorizes Use of Non-NIOSH-Approved or Decontaminated Disposable Respirators – Letter to Health Care Personnel and Facilities

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is revoking the Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) for non-NIOSH-approved disposable respirators (revocation effective July 6, 2021)

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