As of mid-June, there were more than 2.32 million COVID-19 cases and over 122,500 deaths in the U.S.. The need for updated information to fight the pandemic continues to rise daily.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA,) is upgrading information and providing new resources on an almost daily basis during the COVID-19 public health emergency. The FDA staff, researchers, and partners are working virtually around the clock to keep medical professionals updated with the absolute latest information.
In earlier June, the FDA updated its site again with new resources for those on the front lines.
The FDA published two new web pages to help healthcare professionals and the public access information:
- Innovation to Respond to COVID-19 provides an overview of FDA’s innovative approaches to respond to COVID-19 as quickly and safely as possible
- Educational Resources provides links to FDA-produced COVID-19-related resources that help explain FDA’s work.
Here are five other recent changes and updates shared by the FDA:
3D Printing Updates
Within the healthcare field, 3D printing has added new dimensions to the creation of medical devices and implants. The most significant growth in “additive manufacturing” (3D printing), includes fusing all sorts of materials and working with lasers to combine them; increasingly, that has included biomaterials laden with cells, including bio-ink.
The FDA said in a statement on their website that they are also aware that many stakeholders often do not know what device designs to choose or how much to print. The FDA is facilitating information-sharing regarding the use of 3D printing and other advanced manufacturing technologies in the context of personal protective equipment (PPE) and the need for additional medical equipment.
Expansion of Current Programs
The FDA also announced the expansion of its Coronavirus Treatment Acceleration Program (CTAP). It uses every available method to move new treatments to patients as quickly as possible. Through CTAP, the FDA recently announced clinical trials of potential therapies are under trial, with FDA oversight of the process and the results. The FDA announced it would support new clinical trials that are testing new treatments for COVID-19.
The FDA issued an unusual Memorandum of Understanding, announcing a fully collaborative effort with the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to share knowledge and resources with 3D printing technologies. (https://www.fda.gov/about-fda/domestic-mous/mou-225-20-008). The advancing science of 3D printing has allowed the incremental construction of 3D objects of all types using layers, converting a digital 3D object into a physical one.
The collaborate effort will include: the sharing of materials, and educational processes, including printed products and new test materials., as well as engineering support and the sharing of knowledge to apply 3D printing tools, and additive technologies in supporting the medical response to the COVID-19 emergency response. The FDA and the other government agencies are also working closely with America Makes, to provide resources that will connect health care providers and 3D printing organizations.
The FDA has agreed to collaborate with the company Aetion, a company based in New York. Through its Evidence Platform technology, Aetion provides real-world data, to assist medical professionals as they collaborate on advanced analytical techniques to answer urgent coronavirus disease (COVID-19) research questions. The FDA and Aetion aim to respond to questions about the use of diagnostics and medications in the pandemic, and risk factors for COVID-19-related complications in different patient populations.
The FDA announced more updates to its Toolkit pages, intending to provide updated information to medical professionals, research facilities, and consumers; this information encompasses the overall COVID-19 response during the health emergency. The resources include videos, FDA toolkits, resources to print and share, and additional articles for consumers. For more information, click on this location.
As of mid-June, there were more than 2.32 million COVID-19 cases and over 122,500 deaths in the United States. The need for updated information to fight the pandemic continues to rise daily.