Louisiana is poised to become the next epicenter of the coronavirus crisis, White House officials said Thursday, citing new data that shows that 26 percent of the tests for COVID-19 in that state in recent days have come back positive. The New York area remains a “very clear and important hot zone,” Dr. Deborah Birx said at Thursday's briefing of the White House coronavirus task force as she revealed testing statistics on specific states. “What we're seeing finally is testing improving,” said Birx, a renowned veteran of the HIV/AIDS fight who is now serving as the response coordinator for the coronavirus task force.
As the worsening coronavirus pandemic continues to spread across the country, millions of Americans living with diabetes face heightened risks from COVID-19. Around 30 million Americans have diabetes, mostly of the type II (previously called “adult-onset”) variety. A quarter of U.S. adults with diabetes are over 65, an age that has been shown to delineate increased COVID-19 mortality rates.
An emergency room nurse told Insider she wouldn't take a ventilator if she were to be infected with coronavirus and to save it for others who may need it more. An emergency room nurse working in Southern California told Insider, the pandemic had forced her to have some difficult conversations with her family. Paige, who asked to conceal her last name said while she's found it too difficult to have the conversation with her 86-year-old father, she's discussed how she wants her family to deal with her death if she were to be infected and die from the coronavirus with her sisters.
Democrat Amy McGrath has punched back at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, accusing him of seeking a political windfall from an economic aid package while the coronavirus crisis worsens. McGrath's campaign released a TV ad Friday lambasting the Kentucky Republican for “taking a victory lap against the coronavirus." It's a quick response by his most well-funded Democratic challenger to a McConnell commercial in which he trumpeted his key role in passing the $2.2 trillion rescue package.
US politicians have voiced fury over Beijing's handling of the coronavirus crisis but they face a harsh truth -- the United States desperately needs China's supplies. China before the crisis produced nearly half of the face masks imported into the United States -- which in normal times cost less than a dollar but have disappeared from shelves amid growing calls for ordinary Americans wear them when outside. As China appears to have contained its own outbreak of SARS-CoV-1, which has infected more than one million people worldwide since first emerging late last year in Wuhan, it is now the first resort for protective gear sought across the world.
A group of prominent Democratic senators formally requested on Friday that the Pentagon's independent Inspector General investigate the Navy's firing of the commander of the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt, who called for stronger measures to halt a coronavirus outbreak on board. Captain Brett Crozier was relieved of his command on Thursday after his scathing letter was leaked to the media. Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Senator Chris Van Hollen of Maryland led the push and were joined by 15 other U.S. senators, including Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar and Kamala Harris.
Israeli police on Friday have surrounded and established roadblocks around an ultra-Orthodox Jewish city that has become a coronavirus hotspot. Police officers established roadblocks to restrict the movement in and out of Bnei Brak, where a small number of the ultra-Orthodox residents' apparent failure to comply with government social distancing requirements has prompted a dangerously high rate of contagion. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Friday that if the ministry of health deemed it necessary the same restrictions could be placed on other locations within Israel.
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Suay Sew Shop Lindsay Medoff, the CEO of Suay Sew Shop, a 30-employee boutique Los Angeles clothing manufacturer, wants the armies of people sewing homemade surgical masks to add a specific blue shop towel inside them. Medoff and two friends were appalled by the dozens of mask patterns calling for cotton, a highly breathable, permeable fabric, and became obsessed with finding a fabric better suited for the job. They built a lab that could test particle filtration down to 0.3 microns and tested every fabric they could find, from coffee filters to industrial materials.
Photograph: Sergio Maldonado/Reuters Mexico s homicide rate raced to a new record in March, as violence raged even as Covid-19 spread across the country and authorities urged the population to stay home and practise social distancing. Mexico registered 2,585 homicides in March – the highest monthly figure since records began in 1997 – putting 2020 on track to break last year's record total for murders. The surge in killings comes as federal and state officials put resources into containing the Covid-19 crisis and confront the prospect of an already sluggish economy falling even further – potentially deepening the misery for the more than 40% of the population living in poverty.
Top infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci left the hosts of Fox & Friends disappointed and frustrated Friday when he threw cold water on their insistence that the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine is a game-changing cure for the coronavirus. Citing a recent poll showing that 37 percent of doctors around the world feel the drug is currently the most effective treatment of COVID-19, co-host Steve Doocy added that frequent Fox News guest Dr. Mehmet Oz recently touted a small Chinese study that found the drug had some efficacy in treating the virus. Doocy went on to play a clip of Dr. Oz wondering whether Fauci was impressed with the results of that study.
The United States recorded nearly 1,500 deaths from the coronavirus in the past 24 hours, the worst 24-hour death toll globally since the pandemic began. According to figures from Johns Hopkins University, 1,480 deaths were counted between Thursday morning and Friday morning, and the total number of people who have died since the start of the pandemic in the US is now 7,406. It comes as Donald Trump advised all Americans to wear masks in public to protect against the virus over fears that the illness that has infected more than one million people worldwide may be spreading by normal breathing.
With governments worldwide increasing health measures to keep the spread of the deadly coronavirus at bay, one might think there would be virtually no time for waging war. Despite calls for a global ceasefire — “It's time to put armed conflict on lockdown,” said U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in a statement in March — regional conflicts appear to be immune to the coronavirus even as more than 4,000 have died across the Middle East and almost 90,000 people have confirmed cases. In Syria, Iraq and Yemen, as authorities have shut down businesses and imposed curfews, battles between the belligerents have persisted.
Dr. Michael Ryan, executive director of the World Health Organization's Health Emergencies Program, defended China on Thursday against accusations that the country has underreported cases and deaths from the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak. I think we need to be very careful also to not to be profiling certain parts of the world as being uncooperative or non-transparent, and we need to look at transparency across the board,” Ryan said at a Geneva press conference.
College students from Texas who tested positive for the novel coronavirus after spring break in Los Cabos traveled to the Mexican beach resort on Viva Aerobus, the airline said, and were there a week later than reported by the local tourist board. At least part of the Texas group stayed at the luxury Pueblo Bonito Los Cabos hotel, two people familiar with the arrangements told Reuters. So far 49 students among the group from University of Texas at Austin have tested positive for the coronavirus upon their return to the United States, according to the university.
U.S. officials have seized a stockpile of personal protective equipment from an alleged hoarder.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday gave the green light for soldiers to be deployed in a mostly ultra-Orthodox Jewish city considered the centre of Israel's novel coronavirus outbreak. "In light of the special situation in Bnei Brak following the restrictions due to the coronavirus, the IDF (army) will immediately present the necessary civil assistance to Bnei Brak municipality in fulfilling its responsibilities," Netanyahu's office said after talks with security and health officials. Authorities have enforced restrictions on access to Bnei Brak, a majority ultra-Orthodox city near Tel Aviv that is home to around 200,000 people.
Vietnam has lodged an official protest with China following the sinking of a Vietnamese fishing boat it said had been rammed by a Chinese maritime surveillance vessel near islands in the disputed South China Sea. The Vietnamese fishing vessel, with eight fishermen onboard, was fishing near the Paracel Islands on Thursday when it was rammed and sunk by the Chinese vessel, Vietnam's foreign ministry said in a statement posted on a government website on Saturday. All the fishermen were picked up by the Chinese vessel alive and were transferred to two other Vietnamese fishing vessels operating nearby, the Vietnam Fisheries Society said in a statement posted to its website.
Getty The UK plans to roll out "immunity passports" to allow people who have contracted COVID-19 to leave the lockdown early. UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the certificates would be issued to people who have built up immunity to the coronavirus so they can return to "normal life." Citizens would need to test positive in an antibody test before being issued with the certificates.
Neurologists around the world say that a small subset of patients with COVID-19 are developing serious impairments of the brain. Although fever, cough and difficulty breathing are the typical hallmarks of infection with the new coronavirus, some patients exhibit altered mental status, or encephalopathy, a catchall term for brain disease or dysfunction that can have many underlying causes, as well as other serious conditions. The patient, who had chronic lung disease and Parkinson's, was flailing his arms and legs in jerky movements, and appeared to be having a seizure.
If New York City wasn't under a strict stay-at-home order right now, protesters might be marching along Central Park. The 60-bed emergency field hospital is composed largely of tarp-wrapped tents and will function as a respiratory unit servicing overflow patients from Mount Sinai Hospital. City Mayor Bill de Blasio admitted he was “very concerned” about the operation and was sending people from his office to monitor Samaritan's Purse.
Billionaire Shark Tank investor and basketball team owner Mark Cuban hasn't ruled out running for president in 2020 after claiming that the coronavirus pandemic has created a "reset" that could open the field for his campaign. He said he "doubts" he would make a legitimate run this late in the race, with a Democratic field that has whittled down to former vice president Joe Biden and Vermont senator Bernie Sanders seeking the party's nomination to face Donald Trump in the general election, but "you never say never," he said, adding that it's doubtful he'll actually join the fray. "I'll keep an open mind, but I seriously doubt it," he told Axios on Friday.
We've been warned to brace ourselves for over 100,000 deaths, maybe over 200,000, from the new coronavirus that as yet has no vaccine or cure. We also need to brace ourselves for an economic tsunami that is unlike anything we've seen before. Two weeks ago there were 3.3 million first-time unemployment claims.
Countries' procurement agents are fighting each other in China for access to the protective equipment that must play a key role in stemming the spread of the novel coronavirus, German Health Minister Jens Spahn said. He was responding to a spate of reports of consignments of protective masks destined for European countries being bought up by United States officials, sometimes even as aeroplanes stood ready for departure on the tarmac. "You hear stories of people fighting in the truest sense of the word over these masks in China," he told reporters on Friday during a visit to a logistics company that is acting for the German government.