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Coronavirus: Canada urges US not to put troops at border

Coronavirus: Canada urges US not to put troops at border

Coronavirus outbreak: What you need to know

Coronavirus: Canada urges US not to put troops at border

At least 495,000 people worldwide -- including more than 75,000 people in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. as hospitals brace for unprecedented patient surges.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here.

Live updates for Thursday, March 26, continue below:

Canada urges US not to put troops at border

Update 11:25 p.m. EDT March 26: Canada said Thursday it told the Trump administration that a proposal to put troops at the U.S.-Canada border amid the coronavirus pandemic was entirely unnecessary and would damage relations between the two longtime allies.

The Wall Street Journal, citing an unidentified U.S. official, later reported that the Trump administration had dropped its consideration of the plan.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his government had been in discussions with the White House seeking to persuade the U.S. not to do it.

“Canada and the United States have the longest un-militarized border in the world and it is very much in both of our interests for it to remain that way,” Trudeau said.

Trump said the U.S. has troops at the border but then said he would need to find out about that. He then suggested he would deploy troops along the Canadian border to match what is being done at the Mexican border.

Delaware reports its first 2 coronavirus deaths

Update 10:30 p.m. EDT March 26: Officials on Thursday announced Delaware’s first two coronavirus deaths, including one that occurred after the first known outbreak at a long-term care facility in the state.

The death of an 86-year-old man who had lived at Little Sisters of the Poor Jeanne Jugan Residence in Newark was announced Thursday night in a news release from state health officials. The man had underlying medical conditions, officials said. Six residents of the nursing home have tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.

Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort to deploy to New York City

Update 6:15 p.m. EDT March 26: President Donald Trump says he will travel to Norfolk, Virginia, on Saturday to see off a 1,000-bed Navy hospital ship that will relieve the pressure on New York hospitals dealing with coronavirus patients.

Trump says he told New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo the ship will arrive in New York Harbor on Monday.

Trump said in a White House press conference that he’ll “kiss it goodbye” and that the ship is “loaded up to the top” with medical supplies.

The announcement of the USNS Comfort’s planned deployment comes as New York City-area hospitals are clearing out beds, setting up new spaces to triage patients and urging people with mild symptoms to consult health professionals by phone or video chat instead of overrunning emergency rooms.

The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in New York had climbed to 3,800 this week, including close to 900 in intensive care, with the peak of the outbreak weeks away.

US overtakes China with highest number of cases in the world

Update 5 p.m. EDT March 26: The United States now leads the world in the number of confirmed coronavirus cases.

According to a running count by Johns Hopkins University, the number of people infected in the U.S. topped 82,000 on Thursday. That’s just ahead of the 81,000 cases in China and 80,000 in Italy.

Italy has the most confirmed deaths of any country with more than 8,000. More than 1,000 people have died in the U.S.

Idaho reports first three deathsUpdate

4:30 p.m. EDT March 26: The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare announced Thursday that three people have died related to COVID-19. These are the state’s first deaths from the outbreak.All three cases were patients over the age of 60. One of the patients had an underlying health issues.

17-year-old dies of COVID-19 in Louisiana; 83 total deaths reported in the state

Update 3:55 p.m. EDT March 26: A 17-year-old from Orleans Parish, Louisiana, was one of 18 people in the state who have died of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, according to numbers released by the Louisiana Department of Health.

Health officials recorded 510 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, bringing the state’s total number of cases to 2,305. Coronavirus has now been found in 53 of 64 parishes, although Gov. John Bel Edwards has said he believes it’s present in every parish, even as statewide mandates banning crowds and closing businesses continue.

“We won’t see the impact of the distancing and the closing of schools and people staying home for a couple of weeks. ... We are not near the peak of this yet,” said Dr. Catherine O’Neal, an infectious disease expert and chief medical officer at Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Baton Rouge.

New Hampshire governor issues statewide stay-at-home order

Update 3:50 p.m. EDT March 26: Gov. Chris Sununu of New Hampshire on Thursday announced plans to issue a stay-at-home order for the state, effective beginning 11:59 p.m. Friday.

“This is not a step we take lightly,” Sununu said in a statement posted on Twitter. “Disrupting daily life in (New Hampshire) should be something that is only done in the greatest of emergencies.”

Does your blood type determine your likeliness for getting COVID-19?

Update 3:30 p.m. EDT March 26: A research report by scientists in China suggesting that people with certain blood types may be more susceptible to the COVID-19 virus has been shared on social media and reported by media outlets in the past weeks, causing some to wonder if they are more likely to get the virus because of their genetics.

The study looked at more than 2,000 patients in China who tested positive for COVID-19. The study involved patients from three hospitals in Wuhan and Shenzhen, China, the area of the country where it is believed the virus was first transmitted to humans.

Army sending field hospitals to New York City

Update 3:25 p.m. EDT March 26: U.S. Army leaders said Thursday that two field hospitals are on their way to New York City and will be able to begin treating patients at the Javits Center on Monday.

The Army combat units from Fort Hood, Texas, and Fort Campbell, Kentucky, will include as many as 700 personnel and almost 300 beds. Those medical personnel will also be able to help staff additional beds and medical equipment that are being brought in by state and local authorities.

Gen. James McConville, chief of staff of the Army, said they will begin setting up the units this weekend at the center. Officials expect there will be a couple thousand beds in the center to treat patients that do not have the virus.

An Army combat hospital from Fort Carson, Colorado, will be heading to Seattle. McConville said advance staff are already there, and are working with local officials to review several potential locations to set up the unit.

UK health officials report 115 new coronavirus deaths

Update 2:35 p.m EDT March 26: Health officials in the United Kingdom said 115 new coronavirus deaths have been reported, bringing the country’s COVID-19 death toll to 578.

As of Thursday morning local time, officials said 11.658 people have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the U.K.

Pelosi eyes fourth coronavirus package in Congress

Update 2:30 p.m. EDT March 26: The morning after the U.S. Senate unanimously approved an unprecedented $2 trillion economic rescue package to confront the negative impact of the coronavirus outbreak, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters that she was already thinking ahead to the next congressional move to spur economic growth.

“We have to do more,” the Speaker said at a U.S. Capitol news conference, as she told reporters about a phone conversation with Jerome Powell, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve. “The Chairman of the Fed, Mr. Powell said to me, ‘Interest rates are low, think big.'"

Drew Brees commits $5M to help Louisiana amid COVID-19

Update 2:20 p.m. EDT March 26: New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees and his wife, Brittany, will donate $5 million over the course of the year to support Louisiana as the state reels from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

“The priority now is helping our communities get through this tough time,” Brees said in a post Thursday on Instagram. “Let’s all do our part, maintain hope, and get through this together.”

Brees said the money would go toward preparing and delivering more than 10,000 meals each day throughout the state. He said he hopes to fund the program “for as long as it takes to children on meal programs, seniors, and families in need.”

Remington Arms offers to build hospital supplies

Update 1:55 p.m. EDT March 26: Remington Arms has offered to build hospital supplies, including ventilators, surgical masks and beds, as states continue to battle the spread and health industry pressure expected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company offered nearly 1 million square feet of unused manufacturing space at a plant in Ilion, New York, Remington Arms CEO Ken D’Arcy said in a letter Monday to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and President Donald Trump, the Ithaca Journal reported.

4,492 new COVID-19 cases reported in Italy

Update 1:50 p.m. EDT March 26: Health officials in Italy reported 4,492 new COVID-19 infections Wednesday, bringing the country’s total number of cases to 80,539. The cases put the country just behind China, which has thus far reported the most number of 2019 novel coronavirus cases in the world at 81,848 cases.

At least 8,165 people have died of COVID-19 in China, the highest number of deaths connected to the virus in any country in the world.

Globally, more than 495,000 coronavirus cases had been reported by Thurday afternoon, according to numbers compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Indy 500 postponed until August

Update 1:35 p.m. EDT March 26: Organizers announced the postponement Thursday of the Indianapolis 500 until August due to the threat posed by the 2019 novel coronavirus.

The race had been scheduled for May 24. Organizers said it will instead be held Aug. 23.

“I am disappointed that we have had to reschedule the Indianapolis 500,” Roger Penske said Thursday in a statement. “However, the health and safety of our event participants and spectators is our top priority, and we believe that postponing the event is the responsible decision with the conditions and restrictions we are facing.”

Columbia University to allow medical students to graduate early to help with COVID-19

Update 1:15 p.m. EDT March 26: Columbia University officials told ABC News on Thursday that they plan to allow medical students to graduate early so that they can help in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The university is the second in New York to announce such a decision. On Thursday, officials with New York University’s Grossman School of Medicine announced they would allow select medical students to graduate early.

New York has been hit particularly hard by COVID-19. Gov. Andrew Cuomo said 37,258 cases had been reported in the state as of Thursday morning, far more than reported in the second-hardest hit state, New Jersey. Officials in New Jersey had recorded 4,402 cases and 62 deaths from the novel coronavirus as of Thursday.

Cuomo said that as of Thursday, 385 people had died of COVID-19 in New York.

FBI arrests man accused of claiming to have developed COVID-19 cure

Update 12:40 p.m. EDT March 26: The FBI has arrested a Southern California man who officials said falsely claimed to have developed a cure for the coronavirus.

The U.S. Justice Department said in a statement that Keith Lawrence Middlebrook told his 2.4 million Instagram followers that his company would return hundreds of millions of dollars in profit and solicited investments in the company to market the medication.

The statement said Middlebrook claimed he had developed pills to prevent COVID-19 infections and a drug to cure those suffering from the virus.

There are no known cures or vaccinations for the coronavirus. It wasn’t known if Middlebrook has an attorney who could comment.

Georgia schools to remain closed until April 24

Update 12:30 p.m. EDT March 26: Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia signed an executive order Thursday ordering public schools to remain closed until at least April 24 as officials work to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

Georgia State Sen. Jen Jordan told WSB-TV that Kemp will make a decision on the remainder of the school year in the next few weeks.

Health officials said that as of Thursday, 1,525 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the state, including 48 deaths.

REAL ID deadline postponed by 1 year

Update 12:25 p.m. EDT March 26: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced Thursday the that new deadline for Americans to get a REAL ID will be Oct. 1, 2021.

The date was announced after President Donald Trump said earlier this week that the deadline, which was Oct. 1, 2020, would be extended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The federal, state and local response to the spread of the coronavirus here in the United States necessitates a delay in this deadline," acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said Thursday in a statement.

“States across the country are temporarily closing or restricting access to DMVs. This action will preclude millions of people from applying for and receiving their REAL ID. Extending the deadline will also allow the Department to work with Congress to implement needed changes to expedite the issuance of REAL IDs once the current health crisis concludes.”

More than 2,000 COVID-19 cases reported in Florida

Update 12:15 p.m. EDT March 26: Health officials in Florida on Thursday announced 378 new novel coronavirus cases, bringing the state’s total to 2,355 cases.

Officials also reported five more deaths, bringing the state’s total to 28.

Officials with the Orange County Fire Rescue Department said one of its firefighters has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19, according to WFTV. As a precaution, 15 firefighters were placed under self-quarantine.

Over 37,000 coronavirus cases reported in New York

Update 12 p.m. EDT March 26: Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York said that as of Thursday, 37,258 COVID-19 cases have been reported in the state.

The number includes 5,327 cases which required patients to be hospitalized, 1,290 of which were being treated in intensive care units. Cuomo said 1,517 people who were diagnosed with COVID-19 have since been discharged.

Health officials reported 100 more COVID-19 deaths in New York on Thursday for a total of 385 deaths. Cuomo said experts expect that number to rise, as several people infected with the 2019 novel coronavirus have been on ventilator for several days. He noted that the longer a person is on a ventilator, the less likely he or she is to recover.

2 Grand Princess cruise passengers die of COVID-19

Update 11:35 a.m. EDT March 26: Two passengers who were on the Grand Princess cruise ship have died due to complications from the 2019 novel coronavirus, according to multiple reports.

The Grand Princess docked earlier this month in Oakland, California, after several people on the ship tested positive for COVID-19.

In a statement obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said two men in their 60s who had been on the cruise have died. The first passenger died March 21 and the second died March 23, according to the Chronicle.

Of the 1,103 people who chose to be tested after boarding the grand Princess, 103 tested positive and 699 tested negative, according to KTVU.

NBCUniversal CEO says he tested positive for COVID-19

Update 11:15 a.m. EDT March 26: In a message sent Thursday to employees, NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell said he’s tested positive for COVID-19, NBC News reported.

NBCUniversal is the parent company of NBC News.

“I recently have been feeling under the weather and just learned that I have tested positive for COVID-19," Shell said in the email, according to NBC News. "Although the virus has been tough to cope with, I have managed to work remotely in LA and am improving every day.”

Pelosi: House expected to vote on COVID-19 stimulus bill Friday

Update 11:05 a.m. EDT March 26: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday that she expects the U.S. House of Representatives to vote Friday on a proposed $2.2 trillion economic aid package aimed at helping Americans struggling with the economic impact of the novel coronavirus outbreak.

“I feel certain that we will have a strong bipartisan vote,” Pelosi said Thursday at a news conference.

Late Wednesday, senators voted unanimously in favor of the mammoth economic rescue package, which steers aid to businesses, workers and health care systems engulfed by the coronavirus pandemic.

The 880-page measure is the largest economic relief bill in U.S. history.

U.S. sailor in southern Spain tests positive for novel coronavirus

Update 10:50 a.m. EDT March 26: Officials say a U.S. Navy sailor stationed at a naval base in southern Spain has tested positive for the coronavirus.

A statement from Naval Station Rota says an investigation is under way to track who had contact with the sailor.

The base supports U.S. and NATO vessels.

Arnold Schwarzenegger donates $1M toward COVID-19 relief efforts

Update 10:40 a.m. EDT March 26: Actor and former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced Tuesday in an Instagram post that he pledged $1 million to the Frontline Responders Fund, a GoFundMe campaign that aims to get face masks, gloves and surgical gowns to first responders.

“This is a simple way to protect our real action heroes on the frontlines in our hospitals, and I’m proud to be part of it,” Schwarzenegger wrote.

157 new COVID-19 cases reported in Maryland

Update 10:20 a.m. EDT March 26: Health officials in Maryland reported 157 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, marking the “largest one-day increase to date,” Gov. Larry Hogan said.

The cases bring the total number of novel coronavirus cases to 580 in the state.

“We are only at the beginning of this crisis, in our state, in the National Capital Region, and in America,” Hogan said Thursday, adding that he expects cases to continue to “dramatically and rapidly rise.”

“This battle is going to be much harder, take much longer, and be much worse than almost anyone comprehends," he said. "We have never faced anything like this ever before, and I continue to urge the people of our state to stay in place at home and stay safe.”

Death toll climbs past 4,000 in Spain

Update 9:55 a.m. EDT March 26: Health officials in Spain reported 655 new COVID-19 deaths Thursday, bringing the country’s death toll from the 2019 novel coronavirus to 4,089.

The number reported Thursday was lower than the number of new deaths reported Wednesday -- 738 -- which appears to support comments from health officials suggesting that the rise in the number of daily deaths might be stabilizing in the country, The Guardian reported.

“If we are not already at the peak, we are very close,” Fernando Simon, head of Spain’s health emergency center, said Wednesday, according to The Guardian.

Officials have recorded 56,188 COVID-19 cases in Spain, making it the fourth-hardest country hit by the virus. Health officials in China have reported 81,782 cases while officials in Italy have reported 74,386 cases and officials in the the U.S. have reported 69,197 cases, according to the latest numbers compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The outbreak is straining Spain’s health care system, with medical staff struggling to treat the infected amid a shortage of protective gear and enough ventilator machines and other medical equipment.

COVID-19 home test kits launch in Washington state

Update 9:30 a.m. EDT March 26: People in King County, Washington, are getting the first rounds of at-home test kits for COVID-19. A new group called the Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network is mailing out 300 kits every day.

The group is made up of researchers from the Seattle Flu Study and Seattle King County Public Health. They are testing sick and healthy people, plus both kids and adults.

>>

“By testing a broad sample of people in different communities, we’ll have a more detailed understanding of where the virus exists and who is being affected," Dr. Jeff Duchin, health officer for Seattle and King County, said on the Public Health Insider blog.

“This is important information that can help us learn about the true severity of infection, whether the community measures being taken to reduce its spread are working or need to be adjusted.”

New York City health care worker dies

Update 9:25 a.m. EDT March 26: A nursing manager who had been treating COVID-19 patients at New York City’s Mount Sinai Hospital has died, according to reports and hospital officials.

In a statement posted on social media, officials with the Mount Sinai Health System said a member of the hospital’s nursing staff died. He was identified by WNBC as Mount Sinai West nursing manager Kious Jordan Kelly.

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of a beloved member of our nursing staff,” Mount Sinai Health System officials said in the statement. “This growing crisis is not abating and has already devastated hundreds of families in New York and turned our frontline professionals into true American heroes. Today, we lost another hero -- a compassionate college, friend and selfless caregiver.”

Kylie Jenner donates $1M to get medical supplies to first responders

Update 9:05 a.m. EDT March 26: Reality TV star and cosmetics mogul Kylie Jenner has donated $1 million to provide first responders with face masks and other supplies during the coronavirus pandemic, her doctor said.

According to “Good Morning America,” Dr. Thaïs Aliabadi, a Los Angeles-based obstetrician, shared the news on social media Wednesday.

View this post on Instagram

I am speechless, my eyes are filled with tears of joy and my heart is overwhelmed with gratitude. I made a wish to the Universe to gather protective masks for our brave healthcare workers and today my dream came true. One of my patients, a beautiful Living Angel just donated $1,000,000 to help us buy hundreds of thousands of masks, face shields, and other protective gear which we will have delivered directly to our first responders, as too many masks at hospitals are disappearing before making their way onto the faces of our front line heroes. I have never felt more blessed to be a doctor, as helping our brave ER and ICU workers feels just as gratifying as helping my own patients. From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU @kyliejenner ❤️. You are my hero. This generous donation will help save many precious lives. Our world is a better place with you in it. I love you so much. Thank you X a million....

A post shared by Dr. Thaïs Aliabadi (@drthaisaliabadi) on

US unemployment claims hit 3.3 million

Update 8:40 a.m. EDT March 26: Nearly 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week — more than quadruple the previous record set in 1982 — amid a widespread economic shutdown caused by the coronavirus.

The surge in weekly applications was a stunning reflection of the damage the viral outbreak is doing to the economy. Filings for unemployment aid generally reflect the pace of layoffs.

The pace of layoffs is sure to accelerate as the U.S. economy sinks into a recession. Revenue has collapsed at restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, gyms, and airlines. Auto sales are plummeting, and car makers have close factories. Most such employers face loan payments and other fixed costs, so they're cutting jobs to save money.

As job losses mount, some economists say the nation’s unemployment rate could approach 13% by May. By comparison, the highest jobless rate during the Great Recession, which ended in 2009, was 10%.

Global coronavirus deaths surpasses 22K, worldwide cases top 487K

Update 7:49 a.m. EDT March 26: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus hit 22,030 early Thursday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally.

In the three months since the virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, it has infected at least 487,648 people worldwide.

• Italy has confirmed 74,386 cases, resulting in 7,503 deaths.

• The United States has reported 69,197 confirmed cases, resulting in 1,046 deaths.

• Spain has confirmed 49,515 infections, resulting in 4,089 deaths.

• Germany has reported 39,355 cases, resulting in 222 deaths.

• Iran has recorded 29,406 cases, resulting in 2,234 deaths.

• France has confirmed 25,604 infections, resulting in 1,333 deaths.

• Switzerland has confirmed 11,027 cases, resulting in 165 deaths.

• The United Kingdom has reported 9,642 cases, resulting in 467 deaths.

• South Korea has recorded 9,241 cases, resulting in 131 deaths.

• The Netherlands has confirmed 6,440 cases, resulting in 357 deaths.

Bosch develops coronavirus test kit

Update 7:26 a.m. EDT March 26: German engineering group Robert Bosch GmbH said Thursday its health care technology unit Bosch Healthcare Solutions had developed a rapid test for COVID-19, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The test – developed in tandem with molecular diagnostics group Randox Laboratories Ltd. – is touted for producing reliable results within a few short hours that meets World Health Organization standards.

Read more here.

Renowned Congolese human rights lawyer dies from coronavirus

Update 7:12 a.m. EDT March 26: Jean-Joseph Mukendi wa Mulumba, a lifelong defender of human rights in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has died of coronavirus.

Mukendi, 73, died in the Congolese capital of Kinshasa, The Washington Post reported.

According to the BBC, Mukendi may have contracted the virus which causes COVID-19 while on a recent trip to France for a medical checkup.

Read more here.

NJ nursing home evacuates all 94 residents, presumed positive for coronavirus

Update 7:01 a.m. EDT March 26: A nursing home in Woodbridge, New Jersey, was forced to evacuate its entire resident list on Wednesday after all 94 of them are believed to have contracted the novel coronavirus.

According to the Morrison Daily Record, state health officials had ordered St. Joseph’s Senior Nursing Home to transfer its entire residential to another facility.

At least two dozen of the center’s residents have already tested positive, and at least 12 employees are suffering respiratory symptoms consistent with the virus, which causes COVID-19, The Washington Post reported.

Read more here.

Priest living in same Vatican residence as pope tests positive, report says

Update 6:52 a.m. EDT March 26: An Italian priest who lives in the same Vatican residence as Pope Francis has tested positive for the coronavirus, Italy’s ANSA news agency reported Wednesday night.

According to The Washington Post, the Vatican did not confirm the infection nor address if the pope has been tested.

Read more here.

US hospitals weigh universal do-not-resuscitate orders for coronavirus patients

Update 6:40 a.m. EDT March 26: In a bid to protect medical staff from contagion, front-line hospitals are beginning to discuss the possibility of taking drastic measures as the novel coronavirus pandemic.

According to The Washington Post, hospitals are grappling with the possibility – however remote – that adopting universal do-not-resuscitate policies might become necessary to balance equipment and resources against unmanageable patient surge.

Read more here.

UK’s National Health Service attracts 500K volunteers

Update 6:16 a.m. EDT March 26: More than half a million people in the United Kingdom have signed up as volunteers to support the country’s novel coronavirus response, being led by the National Health Service.

Matt Hancock, the UK’s health secretary, tweeted his praise for the response, considering the government expected less than half as many people to volunteer.

Soccer match in Italy linked to epicenter of deadly coronavirus outbreak

Update 5:46 a.m. EDT March 26: A February soccer match appears to be linked to the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus in Italy’s Bergamo province. 

According to The Washington Post, the Feb. 19 Championship League contest in Milan attracted more than 40,000 Bergamo residents, and within weeks Bergamo became the hardest hit province in the hardest-hit region, Lombardi, of Europe’s hardest-hit nation to grapple with virus and its rampant spread.

Giorgio Gori, mayor of the city sharing its name with the Bergamo province, spoke with Agence France-Presse to provide context.

“Some 40,000 Bergamo inhabitants went to Milan to watch the game. Others watched it from their homes, in families, in groups, at the bar,” Gori said, adding, “It’s clear that evening was a situation in which the virus was widely spread.”

Spain extends coronavirus-induced state of emergency

Update 4:13 a.m. EDT March 26: The Spanish government will extend the country’s current state of emergency until April 12 after Wednesday’s novel coronavirus death toll surpassed China’s.

By early Thursday morning, Spain had confirmed a total of 49,515 infections, which have resulted in at least 3,647 deaths.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez reiterated to the public Wednesday that “social isolation is the only way to stop this virus” and encouraged residents to remain vigilant.

Bolivia enacts nationwide lockdown, state of emergency, border closings

Update 4:02 a.m. EDT March 26: Jeanine Anez, Bolivia’s interim president, declared a nationwide lockdown and state of emergency on Wednesday, expected to last through April 15, CNN reported.

In an address to the nation late Wednesday, Anez said Bolivians hadn’t followed the government-ordered mandatory quarantine measures, so the risk of infection is now higher and more stringent containment measures are needed, the network reported.

"No one leaves, nor does anyone enter the country, except for security and health reasons," Anez said.

Bolivia has confirmed 39 coronavirus cases and zero deaths.

New Zealand records largest single-day spike in coronavirus cases

Update 3:47 a.m. EDT March 26: The New Zealand Ministry of Health confirmed 73 new coronavirus patients and identified five additional presumptive cases in the past 24 hours, CNN reported.

"Of our new cases today, the majority still have a link to overseas travel, including being in the same household as someone who has returned from overseas, have attended a known event or linked to a cluster of other cases or are close contacts of a confirmed case," the ministry said.

To date, New Zealand officials have confirmed a total of 262 infections

Florida-bound cruise ship reports 77 passengers with possible coronavirus symptoms; safe harbor elusive for other vessels

Update 3:26 a.m. EDT March 26: Seventy-seven people aboard Holland America’s Zaandam cruise ship are reporting flu-like symptoms as the vessel continues its course to Florida, CNN reported.

The Zaandam left Buenos Aires, Argentina, on March 7, before the cruise operator announced it would be suspending global cruise operations for a month in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Among those reported ill, 30 are passengers, and 47 are crew members.

“Since it is flu season, and COVID-19 testing is not available on board, it is difficult to determine the cause of these elevated cases at this time,” Holland America said in a news release posted to its website.

The cruise line has, however, dispatched a support ship to deliver supplies, staff and coronavirus testing kits to the Zaandam.

Meanwhile, three cruise ships off the coast of Western Australia have been informed they will not be allowed to dock under any circumstances, the network reported. According to CNN:

• The Artania is carrying 800 passengers, mostly Germans, seven of whom have the coronavirus.

• The MSC Magnifica has refueled in Fremantle and remains in waters off the coast of Western Australia. 

• The Vasco da Gama is carrying around 800 Australians, including 200 Western Australians, 109 New Zealanders, and 33 UK citizens and other foreigners, according to the WA government.

Gilead rescinds orphan-drug request for Remdesivir to treat coronavirus

Update 3:04 a.m. EDT March 26: Gilead Sciences Inc. withdrew its application on Wednesday to gain orphan-drug status for Remdesivir, its investigational coronavirus drug, The Wall Street Journal and The Associated Press reported.

The decision appeared to be in direct response to public outcry after the company looked poised to capitalize on the national pandemic.

“COVID-19 is anything but a rare disease,” a letter, attributed to more than 50 consumer and patient advocacy groups, sent to the company earlier in the day Wednesday stated.

Gilead said in a statement Wednesday afternoon that it asked the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to rescind its request because the company “recognizes the urgent public health needs posed by the COVID-19 pandemic,” the AP reported.

Read more here.

California's coronavirus cases soar; officials warn San Francisco on track to rival New York levels

Update 2:24 a.m. EDT March 26: Health officials are sounding the alarm in California as the rate of novel coronavirus infections outpaces projections and the medical community braces for an undetermined patient surge in the coming weeks, CNN reported.

“We originally thought [the infection rate] would be doubling every six to seven days and we see cases doubling every three to four days,” Dr. Mark Ghaly, the secretary of California's Health and Human Services Agency, said at a Wednesday news conference. 

To date California has confirmed more than 3,100 coronavirus cases, resulting in 67 deaths.

Meanwhile, San Francisco Mayor London Breed warned residents on Wednesday that the city’s medical facilities will become overwhelmed if more residents fail to take stay-at-home recommendations to heart.

“If people who are out on the streets continue to congregate with one another, continue to interact with one another, which increases the spread of this virus, we will not have enough beds, enough ICU units, enough ventilators to support the people that we know are going to need them,” Breed told CNN.

Breed estimated the city, alone, will require at least 1,500 additional ventilators and 5,000 extra hospital beds to accommodate the expected influx of patients,

“It is plausible that despite all these efforts we could have a scenario similar to the one that is playing out in New York this very day,” San Francisco Director of Health Dr. Grant Colfax told CNN, adding, “If that happens our capacity, our surge capacity will be far exceeded.” 

State-by-state breakdown of 65,131 US coronavirus cases, 1,000 deaths

Update 1:10 a.m. EDT March 26: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States surpassed 69,000 across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands late Wednesday night.

According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 69,018 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 1,000 deaths.

At least 233 deaths were recorded on Wednesday, alone, making it the deadliest day on U.S. soil since the pandemic began.

Of the confirmed deaths, 285 have occurred in New York, 130 Washington state and 65 in Louisiana

In terms of diagnosed cases, New York remains the hardest hit with nearly 30,811 confirmed cases – more than seven times any other state – followed by New Jersey with 4,402 and Washington with 2,586.

Nine other states have now reported at least 1,000 novel coronavirus cases, including:

• California: 2,535

• Michigan: 2,295

• Florida: 1,971

• Illinois: 1,865

• Massachusetts: 1,838

• Louisiana: 1,795

• Georgia: 1,387

• Pennsylvania: 1,127

• Colorado: 1,086

The figures include 21 people aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship and 49 repatriated citizens. The repatriations include 46 sickened aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship and three others retrieved from the outbreak’s epicenter in Wuhan, China.

The state-by-state breakdown – including presumptive cases – of at least 65,131 cases detected on U.S. soil is as follows:

• Alabama: 386, including 1 death

• Alaska: 42, including 1 death

• Arizona: 401, including 6 deaths

• Arkansas: 308, including 2 deaths

• California: 2,535, including 53 deaths

• Colorado: 1,086, including 19 deaths

• Connecticut: 875, including 19 deaths

• Delaware: 119

• District of Columbia: 183, including 2 deaths

• Florida: 1,971, including 22 deaths

• Georgia: 1,387, including 47 deaths

• Guam: 37, including 1 death

• Hawaii: 95

• Idaho: 123

• Illinois: 1,865, including 19 deaths

• Indiana: 477, including 14 deaths

• Iowa: 145, including 1 death

• Kansas: 126, including 3 deaths

• Kentucky: 198, including 5 deaths

• Louisiana: 1,795, including 65 deaths

• Maine: 142

• Maryland: 423, including 4 deaths

• Massachusetts: 1,838, including 15 deaths

• Michigan: 2,295, including 43 deaths

• Minnesota: 287, including 1 death

• Mississippi: 377, including 5 deaths

• Missouri: 356, including 8 deaths

• Montana: 65

• Nebraska: 64

• Nevada: 321, including 6 deaths

• New Hampshire: 137, including 1 death

• New Jersey: 4,402, including 62 deaths

• New Mexico: 112, including 1 death

• New York: 30,811, including 285 deaths

• North Carolina: 504, including 2 deaths

• North Dakota: 45

• Ohio: 704, including 10 deaths

• Oklahoma: 164, including 5 deaths

• Oregon: 266, including 10 deaths

• Pennsylvania: 1,127, including 11 deaths

• Puerto Rico: 51, including 2 deaths

• Rhode Island: 132

• South Carolina: 424, including 7 deaths

• South Dakota: 41, including 1 death

• Tennessee: 784, including 3 deaths

• Texas: 974, including 12 deaths

• U.S. Virgin Islands: 17

• Utah: 346, including 1 death

• Vermont: 123, including 8 deaths

• Virginia: 391, including 9 deaths

• Washington: 2,586, including 130 deaths

• West Virginia: 39

• Wisconsin: 585, including 6 deaths

• Wyoming: 44

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

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  • This is week is National Wildlife week, difficult to celebrate with most of America under stay at home orders and practicing social distancing. Naturalist David Mizejewski, with the National Wildlife Federation, tells News 96.5 WDBO, it’s important for people to take the time to get out into nature, even if only in their backyard.  Mizejewski suggests, planting a tree or cultivate a garden to support bees, butterflies, and birds. “The idea is just to focus on nature as a way that we can get a little relief from all the stress that we’re all experiencing right now,” he said.  The federation also created the #MyWildlife challenge, encouraging people to post photos of nature at Winners of the photo contest will receive a prize packet when the pandemic is over.  The National Wildlife Week webpage also has resources for kids. In the APP Click here for resources for kids
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But many of the potential voters who remained in their homes complained that the absentee ballots they had requested never showed up. Musician John Prine dies from coronavirus complications Update 7:50 p.m. EDT April 7: Musician John Prine died Tuesday from complications of the coronavirus at 73, according to his family. He died at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, where he had been hospitalized last month. Read more here. Twitter’s Jack Dorsey sets up $1B fund Update 7:50 p.m. EDT April 7: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is setting aside $1 billion in stock to establish a philanthropic venture focused initially on global relief efforts for the COVID-19 pandemic. Dorsey, who is also CEO of the financial-payments startup Square, will bequeath the new venture shares from his Square holdings. Dorsey announced the new venture, called Start Small, in a series of tweets, and said the contribution amounts to 28% of his fortune. The organization will disclose all transfers, sales and grants on a public Google Doc spreadsheet. Start Small won’t be limited to COVID-19 work. “Once we have disarmed this pandemic,” he wrote, the organization will shift its focus to girls’ health and research into universal basic income, the idea that governments should guarantee a minimum income for all citizens. Nearly 400 virus deaths in Washington state Update 7:50 p.m. EDT April 7: Health authorities in Washington on Tuesday announced more than 20 new coronavirus deaths in the state, bringing the total to at least 394. According to figures from the Department of Health, there are more than 8,600 confirmed cases in Washington. The bulk of the cases and deaths are in King and Snohomish counties. For most people, COVID-19 displays mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can be more severe, causing pneumonia or death. Trump seeks $250 billion more from Congress for payrolls Update 6:40 p.m. EDT April 7: As Congress races to craft the next coronavirus rescue package, President Donald Trump’s sudden request Tuesday to pump $250 billion more into a just-launched payroll program for small businesses may hit roadblocks. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said more money is needed for the popular new $350 billion Paycheck Protection Program, which took off with a start last Friday but was quickly overrun as companies jumped at the chance to tap up to $10 million in forgivable loans to keep paychecks flowing amid the stay-home shutdown. He requested the funds in private calls to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Democrats largely support it as a component of a broader new aid package, but McConnell wants to swiftly jam it through Congress this week, even though the House and Senate all but shuttered. “The ways it’s going, we’re going to need that, because the people are loving it,” Trump said in a conference call with banking executives open to the press. NYC virus deaths exceed 3,200, topping toll for 9/11 attacks Update 5:40 p.m. EDT April 7: New York City’s death toll from the coronavirus rose past 3,200 Tuesday, eclipsing the number killed at the World Trade Center on 9/11. In Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson lay in intensive care, believed to be the first major world leader hospitalized with the virus. The twin developments came even as the crisis seemed to be easing or at least stabilizing, by some measures, in New York and parts of Europe, though health officials warned people at nearly every turn not to let their guard down. After 76 days, China finally lifted the lockdown on Wuhan, the city of 11 million where the outbreak began. At least 3,202 people have died in New York City from COVID-19, the city reported. The deadliest terror attack on U.S. soil killed 2,753 people in the city and 2,977 overall, when hijacked planes slammed into the twin towers, the Pentagon and a Pennsylvania field on Sept. 11, 2001. New York state recorded 731 new coronavirus deaths, its biggest one-day jump yet, for a statewide toll of nearly 5,500, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. “A lot of pain again today for many New Yorkers,” he said. Defense Secretary Esper accepts acting Navy secretary’s resignation Update 5:10 p.m. EDT April 7: Secretary of Defense Mark Esper has accepted Thomas Modly’s resignation as acting Secretary of the Navy. 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The therapy, which takes antibodies from the blood of a person who has recovered from a virus and transfuses those antibodies into a person sick with that virus, has long been used as a way to help kickstart a person’s immune system. Acting Navy secretary offers resignation after calling fired captain ‘stupid’ Update 3:25 p.m. EDT April 7: Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly offered to resign Tuesday after giving a profanity-laden speech to the crew of USS Theodore Roosevelt in which he called the ship’s fired commander “too naive or too stupid,” according to Politico. It was not immediately clear whether Defense Secretary Mark Esper would accept his resignation, which officials had not pressed for, Politico reported. Modly faced heavy criticism after he reprimanded sailors aboard the aircraft carrier, who had cheered in support of Capt. Brett E. 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Late Monday, Modly backtracked. “I apologize for any confusion this choice of words may have caused,” he wrote, referring to his speech aboard the Roosevelt on Sunday. “I also want to apologize directly to Captain Crozier, his family, and the entire crew of the Theodore Roosevelt for any pain my remarks may have caused.” Oklahoma reports 16 new fatal coronavirus cases Update 2:55 p.m. EDT April 7: Health officials in Oklahoma reported 16 new fatal coronavirus cases Tuesday, raising the state’s coronavirus death toll to 67. A dozen of the newly reported deaths involved patients who were over the age of 65, KOKI-TV reported. One man who died was between 18 and 35 years old. The other three patients were identified as women between 50 and 64 years old, according to KOKI-TV. As of Tuesday afternoon, 1,472 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Oklahoma. 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O’Donnell will be expected to continue carrying out his duties for the EPA during his time on the oversight board, according to Politico. Trump's removal of Fine follows his late-night firing on Friday of Michael Atkinson, the intelligence community inspector general who forwarded to Congress a whistleblower complaint that ultimately led to the president’s impeachment in the House. On Monday, the president also publicly condemned the acting Health and Human Services watchdog over a survey of hospitals about the coronavirus response. Trump has bristled at the oversight of the coronavirus law, suggesting in a statement last month that some of the mandates from Congress were unconstitutional. “I’ll be the oversight,' Trump declared as lawmakers were finalizing the rescue plan. 4,782 COVID-19 cases reported in Ohio Update 2:15 p.m. EDT April 7: Officials in Ohio reported a total of 4,782 coronavirus infections statewide Tuesday, WHIO-TV reported. 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Statewide, 5,489 people have died of COVID-19, Cuomo said. 604 new fatal coronavirus cases reported in Italy Update 12:55 p.m. EDT April 7: Officials in Italy reported 604 new fatal coronavirus cases Tuesday, bringing the country’s total number of COVID-19 deaths to 17,127. The number is slightly lower than the 636 new fatal cases reported Monday. Officials said that as of Tuesday, 135,586 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Italy. The cases included 28,718 which were serious enough to require hospitalization. On Tuesday, officials said 3,792 people were in intensive care units. More than 61,000 people had been placed under isolation. US House makes adjustments to stymie spread of coronavirus Update 12:45 p.m. EDT April 7: With most lawmakers back in their home districts, the U.S. House met on Tuesday in a quick pro forma session to fulfill a requirement, enshrined in the Constitution, to meet every three days. But in these times of COVID-19, the session was anything but normal. The lawmaker presiding in the speaker’s chair wore a black mask, the House reading clerk performed her duties from the table usually used by Republicans members of the House and the House Chaplain delivered his prayer from the House floor. Pennsylvania officials report 1,579 new coronavirus infections Update 12:30 p.m. EDT April 7: Health officials in Pennsylvania reported 1,579 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday, raising the total number of cases in the state to 14,559, WPXI reported. Authorities also reported 78 new fatal coronavirus cases Tuesday. Statewide, 240 have died of COVID-19, according to WPXI. FDNY: Over 1,300 EMTs, paramedics, firefighters return to work Update 12:20 p.m. EDT April 7: More than 1,300 members of the New York City Fire Department have returned to duty after being exposed to COVID-19 or after recovering from coronavirus infections, officials said Tuesday. “FDNY members are responding to a record number of medical calls, and they continue to meet this unprecedented challenge head on,” Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro said Tuesday in a statement posted on Twitter. 'I am incredibly proud of the men and women of this Department who are demonstrating every single day throughout this pandemic why they are known as the best and the bravest.” 1,260 new COVID-19 cases reported in Georgia Update 12:10 p.m. EDT April 7: Officials in Georgia reported 1,260 new coronavirus cases Tuesday, raising the state’s total number of cases to 8,818, WSB-TV reported. Health officials also confirmed a total of 329 deaths in the state attributed to COVID-19. The number was up 35 from those reported Monday night, according to WSB-TV. UK officials report 786 new fatal coronavirus cases Update 11:45 a.m. EDT April 7: Officials in the United Kingdom recorded 786 new fatal COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, raising the country’s coronavirus death toll to 6,159. Authorities with the British Department of Health and Social Care also announced a total of 55,242 people have been diagnosed with coronavirus infections in the U.K. 875 new coronavirus cases reported in Florida Update 11:35 a.m. EDT April 7: Health officials in Florida said Tuesday that 875 new COVID-19 cases have been identified, raising the total number of cases in the state to 14,504, WJAX-TV reported. Officials said 1,777 of the COVID-19 cases were serious enough to require hospitalization. The Florida Department of Health also reported 29 more fatal cases Tuesday, bringing the state’s total number of deaths to 283. Over 11,000 people have died of COVID-19 in the US Update 11:25 a.m. EDT April 7: More than 11,000 people have died of coronavirus in the United States, according to numbers compiled by Johns Hopkins University. The deaths include 5,489 reported in New York state and 1,005 reported in New Jersey. Officials in Michigan have also reported 727 deaths while 512 fatal cases have been reported in Louisiana. As of Tuesday morning, more than 369,000 Americans have tested positive for COVID-19. Largest single-day increase in fatal coronavirus cases reported in New York Update 11:15 a.m. EDT April 7: Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York said Tuesday that health officials in the state have recorded the highest single-day number of fatal coronavirus cases in the state. Cuomo said Tuesday that 731 new fatal cases were identified in the state, bringing the total number of deaths attributed to the coronavirus in New York to 5,489. In the last four days, the highest single-day number of reported deaths had been 630. Cuomo also said the number of people admitted to hospitals in New York state with COVID-19 complications appears to be stabilizing. As of Tuesday, 138,836 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the state, which is the hardest hit by the new coronavirus. In New Jersey, the state with the second-most number of cases in the country, 41,090 people have tested positive and 1,005 people have died. U.N. estimates loss of 195M full-time jobs globally Update 11 a.m. EDT April 7: The U.N.’s labor organization estimates the equivalent of 195 million full-time jobs could be lost in the second quarter alone from the COVID-19 outbreak, with businesses and plants shuttered worldwide. The projection from the International Labor Organization is based on an emerging impact of the virus, and it amounts to a big increase from its March 18 prediction for an extra 25 million jobs losses for all of 2020. “These figures speak powerfully for themselves: That the world of work is suffering an absolutely extraordinary fall,' ILO Director-General Guy Ryder said. The agency said full or partial lockdown measures now affect nearly 2.7 billion workers or about 81 percent of the global workforce. Some 1.25 billion are in hard-hit sectors such as hotel and food services, manufacturing and retail. US surgeon general optimistic continued social distancing will slow coronavirus spread Update 10:30 a.m. EDT April 7: U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams said Tuesday that he’s optimistic that continued social distancing efforts will allow for businesses to begin reopening in the coming weeks. “I want the American people to know, there is a light at the end of this tunnel,” Adams said during an appearance on ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Tuesday. “We feel confident that if we keep doing the right thing for the rest of this month that we can start to slowly reopen in some places.” He echoed comments made by other public health officials in recent weeks urging Americans to continue social distancing and to avoid being in public if at all possible. “It’s going to be a hard and a tough week but the American people have the power to change the trajectory of this epidemic if we come together like we have after past tragedies in this country,” Adams said. Treasury secretary says Trump looking at how to reopen parts of US economy Update 10 a.m. EDT April 7: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Tuesday that President Donald Trump is looking at how to open parts of the U.S. economy that have been shuttered by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. “The president is very much looking at how we can reopen parts of the economy,” Mnuchin said Tuesday in an appearance on Fox Business News. “There are parts of the country, like New York, where obviously this is very, very concerning. There are other parts of the country where it’s not.” The U.S. economy has suffered nearly 10 million layoffs in just the past few weeks — far exceeding the figure for any corresponding period on record. Still, health officials have cautioned governments not to rush to reopen businesses. “The last thing any country needs is to open schools and businesses only to be forced to close them again because of a resurgence,” World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said last month. Mnuchin said Tuesday that he’s heard from health professionals who have indicated that “in many places where we’re quite close to the worst point.' 'They’re beginning to peak and I think then things are going to get better,” he said. US stocks open higher on hopes virus peak could be closer Update 9:50 am. EDT April 7: Stocks climbed in early trading on Wall Street on Tuesday as markets around the world piled on even more big gains following their huge rally a day earlier. The S&P 500 index rose 3% in the first few minutes of trading and added on to Monday’s 7% surge, following encouraging signs that the coronavirus pandemic may be close to leveling off in some of the hardest hit areas of the world. The stock market is looking ahead to when economies will reopen after authorities shut down businesses and travel and issued stay-at-home orders in hopes of slowing the spread of the virus. Queen Elizabeth wishes prime minister a 'full and speedy recovery’ Update 9:45 a.m. EDT April 7: Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom shared well wishes for Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his family after he was admitted Monday to intensive care with COVID-19 symptoms. Johnson had been quarantined in his Downing Street residence since being diagnosed March 26 with COVID-19. His fiancee, Carrie Symonds, who is pregnant, is also recovering from coronavirus symptoms. “Earlier today The Queen sent a message to Carrie Symonds and to the Johnson family,” representatives of the British royal family said Tuesday in a statement on Twitter. “Her Majesty said they were in her thoughts and that she wished the Prime Minister a full and speedy recovery.” The queen’s son, 71-year-old Prince Charles, went into self-isolation last month after testing positive for COVID-19, according to BBC News. He has since recovered. US surgeon general: We are going to be at 2 million tests this week Update 9:35 a.m. EDT April 7: U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams said Tuesday that 2 million coronavirus tests will have been administered in the United States by the end of the week. “Testing is a concern,” Adams said during an appearance on “CBS This Morning” on Tuesday. “We are going to be at two million test this week and it’s rapidly ramping up with the commercial industry coming on board.” Adams said he’s been in touch with Assistant Secretary for Health Adm. Brett Giroir, who was tasked last month with coordinating COVID-19 diagnostic testing efforts. “I speak with him every day,” Adams said. “He assures me that by the end of this month, we should be not only doing just diagnostic testing but also having good surveillance testing across the country.' Walgreens to expand drive-thru testing Update 9:20 a.m. EDT April 7: Officials with Walgreens announced Tuesday that the pharmacy chain is working to open 15 new drive-thru testing locations in seven states: Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee and Texas. The testing sites will use Abbott Laboratory’s ID NOW COVID-19 test, which can deliver results in as little as five minutes, according to Walgreens. The company expects to be able to test up to 3,000 people per day at each location. “We’re continuing to do everything we can, both with our own resources and also by partnering with others, to serve as an access point within the community for COVID-19 testing,' company president Richard Ashworth said Tuesday in a statement. 'Opening our first drive-thru testing location last month has allowed us to quickly learn and develop an efficient and scalable process, and we’re pleased to be working with Abbott to help accelerate our efforts, and to enable quick results for those being tested.” The testing sites are expected to open beginning later this week. Navy crewman on hospital ship in New York tests positive for COVID-19 Update 9:05 a.m. EDT April 7: U.S. Navy officials said a crew member on board the hospital ship USNS Comfort in New York harbor tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday. The crew member has been isolated from patients and other crew members, and Navy officials said the illness will not affect the Comfort’s mission of receiving and treating patients. The Navy had recently announced that the Comfort, which initially was taking only non-COVID patients, is now accepting trauma, emergency and urgent care patients regardless of their COVID status. British prime minister receiving oxygen but not on ventilator, spokesman says Update 8:25 a.m. EDT April 7: A spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom told reporters Tuesday that he remained in good spirits after being admitted to intensive care Monday with worsening symptoms of COVID-19, Reuters reported. “The prime minister has been stable overnight and remains in good spirits,' the spokesman said, according to Reuters. 'He is receiving standard oxygen treatment and breathing without any other assistance. He has not required mechanical ventilation, or non-invasive respiratory support.” Johnson had been quarantined in his Downing Street residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26. Global coronavirus deaths near 76K, worldwide cases approach 1.4 million Updated 7:45 a.m. EDT April 7: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus hit 75,973 early Tuesday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally. In the four months since the virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, it has infected at least 1,360,039 people worldwide. Five countries – the United States, Spain, Italy, Germany and France – have now confirmed total infection counts well above China’s 82,718 cases. • The United States has reported 368,449 cases, resulting in 10,993 deaths. • Spain has confirmed 140,510 cases, resulting in 13,798 deaths. • Italy has reported 132,547 infections, resulting in 16,523 deaths. • Germany has reported 103,375 cases, resulting in 1,810 deaths. • France has confirmed 98,984 infections, resulting in 8,926 deaths. • China has recorded 82,718 cases, resulting in 3,335 deaths. • Iran has recorded 62,589 cases, resulting in 3,872 deaths. • The United Kingdom has reported 52,301 cases, resulting in 5,385 deaths. • Turkey has recorded 30,217 cases, resulting in 649 deaths. • Belgium has confirmed 22,194 cases, resulting in 2,035 deaths. Nissan furloughs roughly 10K US factory workers Updated 6:35 a.m. EDT April 7: In a move to conserve cash amid, Nissan said it has furloughed about 10,000 U.S. factory workers as the automaker combats a sharp drop in sales fueled by the novel coronavirus pandemic, The Wall Street Journal reported. The cuts, which represent the majority of Nissan’s US workforce, will affect workers at Nissan plants in Tennessee and Mississippi, the Journal reported. Japan officially declares state of emergency amid spiking coronavirus cases Updated 5:14 a.m. EDT April 7: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe formally declared a one-month state of emergency during a coronavirus task force meeting moments ago. The measure, effective immediately, is slated to last through May 6 across seven virus-stricken prefectures. Per the declaration, public transport and supermarkets will remain open in a bid to maintain “basic economic activity,” but residents are asked to stay home and avoid unnecessary trips. According to a tally maintained by researchers at Johns Hopkins University, Japan has confirmed 3,906 coronavirus cases to date, resulting in at least 92 deaths. Coronavirus takes toll on NYPD with 12 dead, nearly 20 percent unable to work Updated 5:03 a.m. EDT April 7: A 12th member of the New York City Police Department died Sunday of a suspected coronavirus infection, while nearly 20 percent of the department’s uniformed workforce is out sick, CNN reported. NYPD Auxiliary Police Officer Ramon Roman became the department’s 12th virus-related fatality since the pandemic began. According to the department, 6,974 NYPD members were out sick on Monday, accounting for slightly more than 19 percent of its entire uniformed workforce. That figure has increased more than seven percentage points in 10 days, CNN reported. Toyota to make face shields to help combat coronavirus pandemic Updated 4:21 a.m. EDT April 7: Toyota announced plans early Tuesday to produce between 500 and 600 medical face shields per week to help front-line medical workers more effectively battle the novel coronavirus pandemic. “Toyota will do what it can to help efforts on the front lines of treatment and in limiting the further spread of COVID-19, which has become society’s biggest priority,” the company said in a prepared statement. Specifically, the Japanese automaker will use injection molds and 3-D printing to mass produce the protective equipment. The statement also notes Toyota plans to leverage its supply chain to distribute thermometers and other protective gear. Although the company statement focuses primarily on production in its Japanese facilities, multiple U.S. based Toyota manufacturing facilities have announced similar plans. White House trade adviser warned of coronavirus in January, report says Updated 3:07 a.m. EDT April 7: Peter Navarro, U.S. President Donald Trump’s trade adviser, warned administration colleagues in late January that the novel coronavirus could kill more than 500,000 Americans and cost the nation trillions of dollars, The New York Times reported early Tuesday. “The lack of immune protection or an existing cure or vaccine would leave Americans defenseless in the case of a full-blown coronavirus outbreak on U.S. soil,” a Jan. 29 Navarro memo to the National Security Council said, adding, “This lack of protection elevates the risk of the coronavirus evolving into a full-blown pandemic, imperiling the lives of millions of Americans.” Read more here. CDC study: US children less likely than adults to fall seriously ill from coronavirus Updated 2:33 a.m. EDT April 7: Preliminary data appears to support early-stage inklings that children in the United States have fared far better than adults in both coronavirus infection rates and severity of symptoms once diagnosed. According to The Washington Post, the CDC’s first report analyzing the coronavirus’ effects on children determined slightly less than 2% of confirmed U.S. cases have occurred in pediatric patients. The agency’s research also suggests that while some serious virus-induced illnesses have occurred in young patients, those younger than 18 have been typically less likely to require hospitalization and less likely to develop fevers or coughs than older patients. Tyson Foods suspends Iowa production after coronavirus sweeps plant Updated 2:10 a.m. EDT April 7: More than two dozen employees of a Tyson Foods plant in Iowa have tested positive for the coronavirus, prompting the company to idle its Columbus Junction production facility. In a statement released Monday, Chief Executive Officer Noel White called the suspension a cautious step to address “varying levels of production impact. 'In an effort to minimize the impact on our overall production, we’re diverting the livestock supply originally scheduled for delivery to Columbus Junction to some of our other pork plants in the region,” White said. Elsewhere, he said, workers at all locations will now have their temperatures taken before being allowed to enter their respective facilities; deep cleaning protocols have been adopted; and the company is working to acquire protective face coverings for workers. US coronavirus deaths hit 10,986, total cases near 370K Published 12:45 a.m. EDT April 7: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States surpassed 368,000 early Tuesday morning across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 368,196 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 10,986 deaths. U.S. cases now more than double the 136,675 reported in Spain and the 132,547 confirmed in Italy. Of the confirmed U.S. deaths, 4,758 – or roughly 43% of the nationwide total – have occurred in New York, 1,003 in New Jersey and 727 in Michigan. In terms of diagnosed cases, New York remains the hardest hit with at least 131,815 confirmed cases – more than three times the next-closest state – followed by New Jersey with 41,090 and Michigan with 17,221. Six other states have now confirmed at least 12,000 novel coronavirus cases each, including: • California: 16,334, including 388 deaths • Louisiana: 14,867, including 512 deaths • Massachusetts: 13,837, including 260 deaths • Florida: 13,629, including 254 deaths • Pennsylvania: 13,206, including 179 deaths • Illinois: 12,262, including 308 deaths Meanwhile, Washington state and Texas each has confirmed at least 8,000 novel coronavirus infections, followed closely by Georgia with 7,558 cases; Connecticut, Colorado, Indiana, Ohio and Maryland each has confirmed at least 4,000 cases; Tennessee and North Carolina each has confirmed at least 3,000 cases; and Virginia, Missouri, Arizona, Wisconsin, South Carolina and Alabama each has confirmed at least 2,000 cases. Click here to see CNN’s state-by-state breakdown. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Washington Insider

  • With the scope of the economic downturn from the Coronavirus growing each day, the Trump Administration has asked top leaders in Congress to approve another $250 billion this week for a new small business emergency loan program, as GOP leaders in the Senate said they would vote on the plan as early as Thursday. 'I urged them at the President's request that they get us another $250 billion approved,' said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, telling reporters the $349 billion emergency loan program had received an 'incredible response' so far. 'Jobs are literally being saved as we speak,' said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. 'But it is quickly becoming clear that Congress will need to provide more funding or this crucial program may run dry.' McConnell said he would press the Senate to approve extra money on Thursday - even though most Senators will not be on Capitol Hill because of the Coronavirus threat. 'Congress needs to act with speed and total focus to provide more money for this uncontroversial bipartisan program,' McConnell said in a written statement. At a White House photo op with President Trump on Tuesday afternoon, Mnuchin repeated his request, saying he wants the money approved Thursday in the Senate, and on Friday in the House. 'We want to assure the workers that if you don't get the loan this week, there will be plenty of money next week,' Mnuchin said, sitting at a table with the President and his daughter Ivanka. Mr. Trump heartily endorsed the move, saying it was proof that his economic rescue plan was working. 'We'll be running out of money pretty quickly,' President Trump said on Tuesday - about a program which only started handing out money last Friday. During a conference call with leaders of major financial institutions, the President urged banks to funnel as much loan relief to U.S. businesses as possible - as fast as possible - to help offset the virus outbreak.