Insiders’ best health stories for the week ending October 1st


Welcome to Insider Healthcare. I’m health editor Leah Rosenbaum, and this week in health news:

If you are new to this newsletter, sign up here. Comments, tips? Send me an email at or tweet @leah_rosenbaum. Let’s get to it …

Pills photo stylized 3

Irene Jiang / Business Insider

More and more people are being vaccinated against COVID-19, but there is still a crucial gap in care. Right now, there are still no easy, inexpensive treatments for when people get infected with the virus.

Reporter Andy Dunn found out that several companies are working to fill this gap. Pharmaceutical companies Merck, Roche and Pfizer, among others, are testing all antiviral pills that can be used to treat COVID-19.

On Friday, Merck said its antivirals roughly halved the risk of hospitalization or death due to COVID-19 compared to those given placebo.

The drug manufacturer and its partner Ridgeback soon plan to ask the FDA for an emergency use permit.

Dive in >>

A COVID-19 pill may soon fill a gap in our pandemic response that vaccines cannot overcome

A building with a sign in front that says Walmart Health and a parking lot

A Walmart Health Clinic with counseling, laboratories, optometry, primary care, dentistry and hearing services.

Walmart Health

In 2019, Walmart became the latest retail giant to enter the US healthcare system. It joined the ranks of Amazon and Google and promised to set up affordable primary care clinics around the country.

But two years later, Walmart’s clinics are having a hard time.

We have written what is going on with Walmart’s health ambitions and how they have been in flux.

There have been a number of important departures from the unit, and in September, reporter Shelby Livingston learned that two top executives in the healthcare industry are changing roles.

In his latest, Shelby got a look at what is happening on earth. She spoke with current and former employees at the clinics, who said the company struggles with basic functions, including insurance building and ID doctors.

Patients are also charged hidden fees, leading to more expensive care.

Read the whole inside here >>

Walmart’s health clinics struggle with basic functions such as invoicing, which puts the company’s push in abolishing care at risk

woman at the medical center

Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Check out the presentations that helped start-up healthcare raise millions in venture capital

Did you know that we have a site featuring exclusive presentations that helped companies raise money from the best VCs?

Investors have poured billions into the healthcare sector this year, and these companies have shared with Insider how they aroused investor interest.

This week, we added a new pitch deck from Vital’s $ 15 million series A Round that will help bring a patient management tool to emergency rooms, as well as a pitch deck from value-based care startup Stellar Health.

See them all here >>

See the presentations that hot health and biotechnology startups used to raise millions from the best VCs

More stories that kept us busy this week:

  • Psychedelics reporter Yeji Lee spoke with a top VC about what red flags are holding him back from investing.
  • Start-ups raise millions to make clinical trials virtual, health reporter Mohana Ravindranath found, but experts say they are still years away.
  • Health correspondent Hilary Brueck dissected four charts showing why people who received the Moderna vaccine may not need booster shots.
  • A new model shows that US COVID-19 cases may fall this winter, reports science reporter Aria Bendix.

– Leah

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