The gist: This week, it looks like vaccines will soon be approved for use in children under 5, but we’re likely to see delays before they’re available locally. Meanwhile, the University of Pennsylvania is seeing massive royalties from vaccine research, which it plans to put back into early-stage scientific research in the city. And despite COVID’s ability to return after treatment with the antiviral drug Paxlovid, Philly docs aren’t holding back on prescribing it.
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Vaccine doses for children under 5 are likely to receive a green light within the week, but there may be a lag before the shots are available locally. Many doctors’ offices, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health says, are waiting for an FDA advisory panel to give the approval before placing orders for doses, which could cause some delays.
What you need to know
🔒 The University of Pennsylvania reaped nearly $1 billion in royalties from vaccine research, and the school is plowing the proceeds into an expansion of scientific and medical research in the city.
⚕️ Citing the impact of COVID-19, Medicare has proposed not publishing how hospitals scored on certain complications of surgery during the pandemic, making it harder to evaluate yours.
🏫 The Camden school system is believed to be the only South Jersey district that kept its mask rule after Gov. Phil Murphy lifted the state requirement, and soon, it will wrap a full year with that mandate in place.
💊 COVID can come back following treatment with Paxlovid, but Philly doctors aren’t hesitating to prescribe the drug for people at risk from infection.
🏥 Routine cancer screenings dropped precipitously during the pandemic, but Penn Medicine is providing free mammograms at one health clinic through June 23.
🎉 After two years of pandemic disruption, the Odunde Festival — the annual African American street festival billed as the country’s largest — returned to Philly on Sunday.
Local coronavirus numbers
📉 Coronavirus cases are decreasing in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Track the latest data here.
What you're saying
Last week, we asked if you’d be getting your kids under 5 vaccinated once approval comes. Here’s what you told us:
💉 “Yes I would get them the shots.”
A dose of diversion: Celebrate Juneteenth
Sunday is Juneteenth, which dates back to 1865 and commemorates the emancipation of enslaved people in the United States. And this year, there are plenty of ways to honor the holiday through community gatherings, history talks, parades, and more all across Philadelphia.
🌼 Sunday also marks the final day to see this year’s Philadelphia Flower Show. Here are five experiences you can’t miss — and one you can skip — before it’s gone.
🇹🇭 Chef Chutatip “Nok” Suntaranon of Philly’s own Kalaya recently returned to Thailand to gather inspiration for her restaurant’s new Fishtown location. And we tagged along for the trip.
⚖️ Jemille Duncan started in Philly politics four years ago, and he’s already written 62 pieces of legislation. Oh, and he’s just 18 years old.
A good thing: Summer programming at Eakins Oval is back
With the return of the Oval XP on Wednesday, city officials hope that the nearly decade-old “seasonal park” can help give families an affordable alternative for summer fun. And this time, thanks to attractions like a giant ferris wheel and the city’s largest outdoor beer garden, it promises to be bigger and better than before the pandemic put a pause on summer programming.