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5 things you need to know this Tuesday

Pfizer vaccine expanded to kids; Vaccinations and infection rates in Washington; Telemarketers calling Washingtonians; Nurse shortage due to pandemic; Kshama Sawant.

FDA expands Pfizer COVID vaccine authorization to ages 12-15

The Food and Drug Administration is expanding emergency use authorization for Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine to children ages 12-15.

The agency said the two-dose vaccine has "met the statutory criteria" to allow the EUA to be amended, and says the "known and potential benefits of this vaccine in individuals 12 years of age and older outweigh the known and potential risks."

The FDA action will be followed by the advisory committee's meeting currently set for Wednesday, and if they give the OK, the vaccines can then be distributed. Read more

Vaccinations driving down infections in Washington

Doctors in western Washington said Monday that COVID-19 vaccinations may be starting to drive infection rates back down.

Data from the Department of Health shows 56% of Washingtonians age 16 and older have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and nearly 43% were fully vaccinated.

After the fourth surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, the rate of hospitalizations is now beginning to go down as well, according to DOH data. Read more

Telemarketers are jamming Washington phones with robocalls

The number of robocalls coming into Washington state reached the 2 million mark each day in March of this year, according to the robocall tracking service YouMail.

After a lull during the start of the pandemic, telemarketers are now ringing phones in increasing numbers and frustrated consumers are calling on the government to do something to put a stop to it.

The KING 5 Investigators teamed up with Nomorobo to get a sense of the types and volume of robocalls coming in to Washington state any given day. Read more

Nurse shortage worse than ever due to pandemic

There has been a shortage of qualified nurses for decades, and the Washington State Hospital Association (WSHA) believes the shortage is not coming to an end anytime soon.

So, what is causing the nurse shortage?

It comes down to a lack of nursing faculty at universities and small admittance numbers to nursing schools, according to the WSHA and the Washington State Nurses AssociationRead more

Seattle Councilmember Kshama Sawant ethics violation

Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant has acknowledged she violated the city's Ethics and Elections Code when she used city funds to help pay for her Tax Amazon initiative, among other things, last year.

Sawant has agreed to pay a $3,515 fine, which equals twice the amount she originally spent, according to the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission, which finalized the settlement Monday.

Charges were brought against Sawant in February of last year after she used her official city council website to promote the ballot initiative aimed at taxing Amazon and other big businesses in Seattle. Read more

Also see: Seattle local forecast

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