KANSAS CITY, Mo. — 41 Action News is offering a daily recap of COVID-19 related stories from across Kansas City and the country. Check back every morning for the latest developments.
University of Kansas Health System update
Doctors with the University of Kansas Health System reported 27 patients with acute COVID-19 infections on Wednesday, including seven in the ICU and five on ventilators. The hospital also has 33 patients in recovery phases.
During Wednesday’s briefing, doctors were joined by Melissa Robinson, Kansas City councilwoman and president of the Black Health Care Coalition. They discussed ways to achieve vaccine equity in underserved communities.
FDA finds single-shot vaccine safe, effective
A new report from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration finds Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot vaccine to be safe and effective, setting the state for its potential approval and distribution.
The new vaccine candidate would clear many of the logistical hurdles presented by the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.
KCKPS to bring students back to classrooms
All students in Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools will return to the classroom on April 5. The district’s Board of Education voted Tuesday to allow students to return, though parents have the option to continue with remote learning.
The district will maintain one day of remote learning per week under the plan.
KCMO partners with Walmart, YMCA on vaccine events
The city of Kansas City, Missouri, will partner with Walmart and the YMCA of Greater Kansas City to hold vaccination events in areas with “low life expectancy,” the city announced Tuesday.
More than 3,500 eligible residents will be vaccinated at the events, which will be hosted over the next six weeks. Only those who are eligible and notified by the KCMO Health Department will be made aware of the locations of the events.
Kauffman to allow some fans at Royals games
Good news for baseball fans: The Kansas City Royals plan to host fans at Kauffman Stadium this season, though the exact capacity has not been determined.
Royals general manager Dayton Moore confirmed Tuesday that some fans will be allowed at games. He pointed to the success the Chiefs saw in allowing 22% capacity at Arrowhead Stadium for the 2020 NFL season.
Kansas to forgive $5M in small business loans
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly on Tuesday announced that 344 small hospitality businesses will no longer be required to pay back $5 million in loans awarded early in the pandemic. The bridge loans, provided through the state’s Hospitality Industry Relief Emergency (HIRE) fund, will be converted into grants.
All businesses that had already made payments on the loans will be reimbursed, Kelly said.
Liver disease cases on rise during pandemic
Health experts warn the COVID-19 pandemic is contributing to an increase in alcoholic liver disease, which was already on the rise before the outbreak of the virus. Doctors say they have seen a dramatic increase in liver disease cases since last March.
Those in the medical community are urging people to drink responsibly to spare themselves from the effects of the disease.