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COVID-19

Schools confront more polarization with mask rules

Students in Wichita, Kansas, public schools can ditch the masks when classes begin. Detroit public schools will probably require them unless everyone in a room is vaccinated. In Pittsburgh, masks will likely be required regardless of vaccination status. And in some states, schools cannot ...

McConnell urges Americans to ‘get vaccinated’

WASHINGTON — Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell implored unvaccinated Americans Tuesday to take the COVID-19 shot, issuing a stark and grave warning of a repeat of last year’s rising caseloads and shutdowns if people refuse to protect themselves from the coronavirus. McConnell urged ...

Appeals court: Indiana must resume unemployment benefits

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Monday that the state temporarily continue payment of federal unemployment benefits, affirming an earlier court order that Indiana must restart the extra $300 weekly payments to unemployed workers. Chief judge Cale Bradford denied a request ...

Pfizer to discuss possible vaccine booster

WASHINGTON — Pfizer says it plans to meet with top U.S. health officials Monday to discuss the drugmaker’s request for federal authorization of a third dose of its COVID-19 vaccine as President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser acknowledged that “it is entirely conceivable, maybe ...

COVID numbers improve

COVID-19 metrics for the six local counties are generally far better now than a month ago in terms of new cases and the percentage of tests that are positive, according to Friday’s update of the state’s early warning dashboard. The numbers are best in Blair, Cambria and ...

Mental health toll from isolation affects kids on reentry

After two suicidal crises during pandemic isolation, 16-year-old Zach Sampson feels stronger but worries his social skills have gone stale. Amara Bhatia has overcome her pandemic depression but the teen feels worn down, in a state of “neutralness.’’ Virginia Shipp is adjusting but says ...