The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is reopening indoor facilities at 23 rest areas in Pennsylvania to all motorists.
President Trump used his daily coronavirus briefing to attack Democratic governors who in his estimation had shown insufficient gratitude for his administration's response to the pandemic. “I want them to be appreciative,” Trump said, arguing that failing to show appreciation was insulting not just to him but to the Army Corps of Engineers, which has been part of the federal response to the pandemic. The president said he has told Vice President Mike Pence not to call governors who haven't shown proper deference to his administration.
As the House of Representatives prepares to pass a historic $2 trillion coronavirus relief package, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi faces a bigger challenge: figuring out a way for 435 members to cast votes in the time of social distancing. The pandemic has left multiple members of Congress in quarantine and led to restrictions on movement that could prevent the House from voting. While House leadership has indicated they hope to pass the initial coronavirus aid bill quickly using a voice vote, the likely need for further relief and other legislation has led Pelosi to consider new procedures, including measures for remote voting that a report from the House Rules Committee described as “one of the biggest rule changes in the last century.”
STR/AFP via Getty Images Wei Guixian, a 57-year-old seafood vendor in Wuhan, China, was among the first 27 people to be diagnosed with the coronavirus, which originated from the wet market where she worked. Wei first began exhibiting coronavirus symptoms on December 10 and was admitted to the hospital less than a week later, with doctors describing her illness as "very serious" and "ruthless." Other vendors from the same market began to check into the hospital soon after.
Rescuers scouring the rural plains of Alabama on Friday found a missing 4-year-old girl, nearly 48 hours after she initially vanished, authorities said. Evelyn Vadie Sides and her dog were located about 3:20 p.m. near Lee Road 65, Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones announced.
Pope Francis said the coronavirus had put everyone "in the same boat" as he held a dramatic, solitary prayer service in St. Peter's Square on Friday, urging the world to see the crisis as a test of solidarity and a reminder of basic values. "Thick darkness has gathered over our squares, our streets and our cities," he said, speaking from the steps of St. Peter's Basilica into an eerily empty and rainy square before delivering an extraordinary "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and the world) blessing - something he normally does only twice a year. The Vatican called the service "An Extraordinary Prayer in the Time of Pandemic," a sombre echo of an announcement by Italian officials minutes earlier that the coronavirus death toll in the country had surged past 9,000.
A growing number of states and counties across the nation are cracking down on residents' movements amid the spread of the coronavirus – a new normal that's led to more than 100 million Americans being ordered to stay home. It will go into effect Saturday and runs until April 10 at 5:00 p.m. The order was based on models released by the Minnesota Department of Health and University of Minnesota that predicted more than 70,000 residents could die if no action was taken.
South Africa came under a nationwide military-patrolled lockdown on Friday, joining other African countries imposing strict curfews and shutdowns in an attempt to halt the spread of the coronavirus across the continent. Some 57 million people are to be restricted to their homes during South Africa's three-week total lockdown which began at midnight. Kenya, Rwanda and Mali are some of the African countries that have imposed restrictions to curb the spread of the coronavirus, which has been confirmed to have infected 3,203 people and killed 87.
The world has been given an indication of the economic impact of coronavirus as Singapore released its initial growth figures for this quarter. Singapore said gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 2.2% year-on-year while, compared with the previous quarter, GDP fell by 10.6%. It marks the biggest quarterly contraction for the South East Asian nation since 2009, in the midst of the global financial crisis.
Hong Kong announced plans to ban gatherings of more than four people and close cinemas, gyms and arcades, after the Asian financial center recorded its largest one-day surge in coronavirus cases. The city is asking restaurants to reduce their capacity by half, Chief Executive Carrie Lam told reporters Friday. The measures at eateries also require them to keep tables at least 1.5 meters (5 feet) apart, limit seatings to four people per table and enact temperature checks for those entering.
Hours after a Fox News interview in which he downplayed a national shortage of hospital ventilators to treat patients infected with the coronavirus, President Trump fired off a number of tweets Friday blaming General Motors and its CEO, Mary Barra, for not manufacturing more of them. The president explained in a later tweet that “P” stood for the Defense Production Act, which many U.S. governors have been demanding Trump use to compel businesses to produce badly needed medical supplies and equipment. Although he invoked the act as a standby, Trump hasn't issued any specific orders under it, claiming that just the threat of it has prompted companies to step up production on their own.
Finally, as Tuesday night changed to Wednesday morning, two men stepped forward to tell reporters they had reached a deal — the secretary of the Treasury and the minority leader of the Senate. The majority leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, was relegated to role of announcing the deal a short time later on the Senate floor. With his mastery of rules and tactics and control over his caucus, McConnell has developed a reputation as one of the Senate's most powerful majority leaders.
Without intense government intervention, the novel coronavirus could infect 7 billion people and kill 40 million this year, according to a new report from researchers at the Imperial College of London. Without implementing strategies like lockdowns to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus, there would have been 7 billion infections and 40 million deaths in 2020 alone, according to a report published Thursday from researchers at the Imperial College of London. The report, according to co-author Charles Whittaker, is meant to project the impact of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
When Harvard University students were told to pack their bags, essential workers like Doris Reina-Landaverde remained on campus to disinfect dormitories. Harvard closed its doors March 10 to slow the virus' spread and switched to online classes. In the meantime, custodian Reina-Landaverde continued to show up to work every day with a pair of latex gloves and a mask.
The Kremlin confirmed a coronavirus case in President Vladimir Putin's administration on Friday and the government said measures imposed in Moscow to fight the virus should be extended across Russia. The Kremlin said it was taking measures to stop the virus spreading further after a staff member in the presidential administration contracted the virus. It said the person had not come into contact with Putin, but declined to identify them.
Pope Francis stood alone in vast Saint Peter's Square Friday to bless Catholics around the world suffering under the coronavirus pandemic, urging people to ease their fears through faith. "Thick darkness has gathered over our squares, our streets and our cities; it has taken over our lives, filling everything with a deafening silence and a distressing void, that stops everything as it passes by," he said. In a historic first, the Argentine performed the rarely recited "Urbi et Orbi" blessing from the steps of the basilica to an empty square, addressing those in lockdown across the globe via television, radio and social media.
Nearly 300 Americans stranded in Central America due to the spread of the coronavirus have returned to the U.S. this week aboard flights used by U.S. immigration authorities to deport people back to their home countries. The Americans have been brought back to the U.S. on the return legs of three separate removal flights to Central America, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said. Since Sunday, 273 Americans have flown back to the U.S. on removal flights, said Mary Houtmann, an ICE spokesperson.
Out of the three of them, unfortunately, he has been the worst in taking decisive action,” New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams says of de Blasio. In a recent conversation with Yahoo News, he struggled to find words to describe the inadequacy of Trump's response, but was hardly more generous to de Blasio, with whom he shares a near-identical political outlook. Freddi Goldstein, a spokeswoman for City Hall, countered such claims in an email to Yahoo News.
The Indian government has defended its handling of the coronavirus outbreak after a strict lockdown - introduced with little warning - left millions stranded and without food. The country's response had been "pre-emptive, pro-active and graded", it said in a statement. India's population of 1.3 billion was given less than four hours' notice of the three-week lockdown on Tuesday.
Jeff Bezos posted a picture to Instagram of himself having a video-call with the Director General of WHO to discuss the coronavirus outbreak. Bezos said Amazon is already supporting WHO with IT support and providing AI to help its epidemic-mapping tools. "We also discussed the urgent need for collective action to produce and distribute plentiful COVID-19 test kits," Bezos said.
Lockdowns have begun in Africa as coronavirus cases rise above 1,000, while Nigeria announced it is closing airports to all incoming international flights for one month in the continent's most populous country. Rwanda said all unnecessary movements outside the home are banned for two weeks except for essential services such as health care and shopping. The East African nation, which has 17 cases, told all public and private employees to work from home.
The International Monetary Fund said that it's working to get aid to developing nations whose own resources will fall short of the $2.5 trillion that they need to address the coronavirus pandemic. The fund has received inquiries or requests for aid from 50 emerging nations and 31 middle-income countries, Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said in a webcast briefing Friday. She said the world economy is already in a recession that will be as bad or worse than the 2009 downturn and reiterated the IMF's willingness to put its $1 trillion in resources to work.
At a coronavirus task force briefing on Friday, President Trump attacked some governors for their criticism of him, saying, “I want them to be appreciative.
Italy on Friday recorded the most daily deaths of any country since the start of the coronavirus pandemic and Spain had its deadliest day, as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson became the first major world leader to test positive. Italy reported 969 new deaths, Spain 769 and France 299 as Europe reeled from a crisis that led the United States on Friday to finalise an unprecedented $2 trillion stimulus package. In other grim milestones, AFP tallies showed more than 26,000 deaths worldwide, and a total of 300,000 cases now recorded in Europe, after the United States overtook China as the country with the most infections.