A Recap of This Week’s Top News – January 20, 2023

Changes to policy, scientific discovery, and expert recommendations and opinions all have the power to rapidly influence the landscape of a sector. Whether you’re a leader at a non-profit, a member of a university’s marketing department, or a stakeholder for a public health agency, being informed about the latest industry happenings can be the difference between exceeding and falling short of organizational goals. At Hager Sharp, our experts vigorously scan media coverage to identify areas of opportunity. And now, with the introduction of the Sharp Round-Up, you too can review what we consider some of the top news of the week.

Below you will find a compilation of news spanning the health, education, labor, and economy sectors. This list includes mainstream, DC-focused, and trade publication coverage from Saturday, January 14 to Friday, January 20. Let these clips serve as a resource when developing thoughtful strategies and use them to further foster organizational innovation and adaptability.

Here’s what you need to know.

Politics and Policy:

  • Chief Science Officer David Kessler is planning to retire, signifying the unofficial end of the “Operation Warp Speed” era. Kessler’s retirement was announced by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) last Friday. Kessler was a key player in speeding up production and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines during the height of the pandemic.

Education News:

  • On Wednesday, Yale University announced updated mental health policies that allow for students to take time off of school without the threat of having to withdraw from classes or forfeit their university health insurance. The updated policy follows a November story by The Washington Post calling out the ivy league school for how it handled students struggling with mental health issues.
  • Harvard Medical School is no longer contributing data to U.S. News & World Report surveys, which rank schools across the country based on cost, enrollment, location, test scores, and more. The dean of the faculty of medicine claimed that the report’s survey system was creating “perverse incentives for institutions to report misleading or inaccurate data.”

Health News:

  • A recent study from the Gender Equity Policy Institute revealed that maternal deaths were almost three times more likely for pregnant people living in states with abortion bans. The data also showed that people of color are disproportionately affected, with maternal mortality rates 4.5 times higher for Native American mothers and 2.6 times higher for Black mothers compared to the rates for white mothers in states with abortion bans.
  • New research found that COVID-19 infections during pregnancy increase the risk of maternal death or a severe infection. The lead author of the study called for pregnant people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 to best protect them against complications during their pregnancy.