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Daily Pandemic Brief for Monday November 16th.
As of Monday evening, there are over 54.8 million coronavirus cases and over 1.3 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 11.2 million cases and over 246,000 deaths. Yesterday, the US surpassed 11 million cases and the country is averaging over 150,000 cases a day over the past week and that number continues to climb. California Governor Gavin Newsom announced today the state is "pulling the emergency brake" on its reopening, reinstating broad restrictions across the state. Daily cases are rising in 48 states. New Mexico is under a two-week lockdown. New Jersey has announced new limits on gatherings. President-elect Biden announced today that "more people may die" from coronavirus as a result of President's Trump refusal to begin the transfer of power. In positive news, vaccine maker Moderna announced very positive results from their vaccine candidate today. Health experts are cautiously optimistic about this news, coupled with Pfizer's vaccine results from last week, even though it will still be several months before widespread vaccine distribution. We hope you had a good weekend and the rest of today's important coronavirus news is below.
- Philadelphia will enact new restrictions in an attempt to stem rapidly rising case numbers, including banning indoor gatherings and shifting high schools and colleges to remote learning for the remainder of the year, Mayor Jim Kenney announced at a news conference on Monday.
- Representative Don Young of Alaska, the longest-serving member of the House and its oldest member, said on Monday that he had been hospitalized over the weekend with the coronavirus but had since been discharged, as two other lawmakers also announced they had contracted the virus.
- The Navajo Nation on Monday reinstated a stay-at-home order for the next three weeks after health officials warned of “uncontrolled spread” of Covid-19 in dozens of communities across the vast reservation. The move on the country’s largest tribal reservation points to one of the most aggressive efforts anywhere in the United States to fight the coronavirus.
- The drugmaker Moderna announced on Monday that its coronavirus vaccine was 94.5 percent effective, based on an early look at the results from its large, continuing study. Researchers said the results were better than they had dared to imagine. But the vaccine will not be widely available for months, probably not until spring.
- The N.C.A.A. will consolidate its usually sprawling men’s college basketball tournament to a single city in 2021 instead of holding the games at 13 sites across the United States, in hopes of limiting travel during the pandemic.
- The European Union on Monday signed a contract with CureVac, a pharmaceutical company headquartered in Germany, enabling 27 countries of the bloc to order up to 405 million doses of the future Covid-19 vaccine. “If the vaccine proves to be safe and effective, every member state will receive it at the same time and under the same conditions,” said Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm.
- President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. warned that a “very dark winter” was ahead and called on Congress to pass an economic stimulus package immediately to help workers struggling to cope with the coronavirus pandemic. In his first economic address since winning the election this month, Mr. Biden said he supported a national mask mandate to help curb the rise of the virus and that Congress should provide trillions of dollars in fiscal support to workers, businesses and state and local governments.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Friday November 13th.
As of Friday evening, there are over 53.1 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 10.7 million cases and over 243,000 deaths. It was a mixed week in Covid news but overall the skyrocketing case count is extremely alarming. We did an important weekly recap here on the rising case count. This includes answers to why is this happening now, what can you do to stay safe, and what is the government doing. 46 states are now reporting increases in infections. There were over 163,000 detected cases yesterday, and over 165,000 today. New Mexico and Oregon announce new lockdowns. Earlier in this week, positive vaccine news prompted the stock market to rise all week, but health officials warn that it is still several months (at least) before there is mass adoption of any vaccine. They continue to stress the importance of the basics: Mask wearing, social distancing, and hand washing. The rest of today's important news is below and we hope you have a good and safe weekend.
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- In Oregon, Gov. Kate Brown of Oregon issued orders to place the state in a partial lockdown for two weeks starting Wednesday, shuttering gyms, halting restaurant dining and mandating that social gatherings have no more than six people.
- In New Mexico, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham issued a “stay at home” order to begin Monday and lasting two weeks, asking people to shelter in place except for essential trips. She said non-essential businesses and nonprofits must cease in-person activities. That is the nation’s most sweeping statewide order of the fall season, as the virus has spread in record numbers across the nation and placed a strain on hospitals.
- Facing a second wave of the coronavirus, New York City stands on the precipice of once again closing its classrooms. On Friday, Mayor Bill de Blasio warned that the public schools system could close as early as Monday as the citywide seven-day average rate of positive test results increased to 2.83 percent. He has committed to closing the system if the rate reaches 3 percent.
- The Secret Service’s uniformed officer division has sustained a coronavirus outbreak, according to four people briefed on the matter, the latest blow to a beleaguered agency that has struggled to perform its duties during the pandemic. The outbreak is at least the fourth to strike the agency since the pandemic began, further hobbling its staffing as it is being called on to provide full protection to President Trump and President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.
- Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, pleaded with Americans on Friday to take seriously the skyrocketing coronavirus case numbers across the country, warning the danger is elevated as families prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving. In an appearance on “CBS This Morning,” he noted that the baseline number of infections never decreased to controllable levels, allowing the virus to spread like wildfire as the weather cooled and life moved indoors. The host, Gayle King, observed that many people “are letting their guards down.” “It’s understandable, I don’t want to be critical of that,” Dr. Fauci said. “But we want to just plead with them to understand the dynamics of this outbreak.”
- Microsoft said Friday that it had found more evidence that hacking groups backed by Russia and some now by North Korea were continuing their attempts to steal information from pharmaceutical companies and researchers involved in developing treatments and vaccines for Covid-19.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Thursday November 12th.
As of Thursday evening, there are over 52.5 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 10.5 million cases and over 242,000 deaths. Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the United States, urged Americans on Thursday to “double down” on basic precautions as coronavirus cases soared across the country and more Covid-19 patients were hospitalized than ever before. The daily case and death numbers are grim and likely to worsen. Top Congressional Democrats renewed calls for a large relief package to be passed as soon as possible — holding firm to the $2.4 trillion proposal put forth before the Election. California passes 1 million cases; Texas passed that milestone earlier in the week. Trump Campaign Advisor, Corey Lewandowski, tested positive, as did Representative Don Young of Alaska, the oldest member of the House of Representatives. New York City schools are likely to close again around Thanksgiving and go back to online only. Across the country, other school districts are doing the same. The rest of today's important news is below.
- Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California and Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the minority leader in the Senate, cited record-breaking infections across the country, along with the presidential election results, to justify their position that any package must be much larger than what Republicans had been suggesting. By holding firm to keeping $2.4 trillion in new spending as their starting point, Democrats appeared to be closing the door on the possibility of a year-end compromise with Republicans, who have proposed spending a fraction of that amount.
- Vermont’s largest hospital has been working for more than two weeks to break free from a cyberattack that has debilitated many of the health center’s functions just as the state is seeing its coronavirus hospitalization and case numbers spike.
- With the coronavirus raging unchecked and hospitals overflowing in many parts of the U.S., medical workers are beseeching governors, mayors and city councils to impose mask mandates and other stricter measures, often to no avail — and are growing impatient with official inaction. In South Dakota, which has the highest rate of Covid-19 hospitalizations in the country but no statewide mask mandate, one doctor after another spoke out at a City Council meeting in Sioux Falls on Tuesday, calling for the city to impose its own.
- Corey Lewandowski, a Trump campaign adviser who has been working on efforts to bring lawsuits contesting the election outcome in several states, tested positive for the coronavirus on Wednesday, a person briefed on the diagnosis said Thursday. He attended a crowded election night party at the White House that several other people who later tested positive also attended. The latest figure to join their ranks was Jeff Miller, a Republican strategist, according to a person with knowledge of the situation on Thursday.
- Since Election Day, more than a third of the governors across the United States, Republicans and Democrats, have issued public appeals for people to take coronavirus prevention measures seriously, as the latest surge — the biggest so far — washes across the nation. Many also imposed new limits on public and private gatherings.
- Need a break from COVID news? On our Skip Instagram we're doing our best to focus on positive stories and silver linings - follow our Instagram here.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Tuesday November 10th.
As of Tuesday evening, there are over 51.2 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 10.2 million cases and over 239,000 deaths. First, some positive news: Lawmakers are back to discussing a stimulus package in Congress, here's our brief video update from today. Second, Pfizer's vaccine news from yesterday is more promising than people expected. In the late stage trial the vaccine was over 90% effective, and we explained this positive vaccine news in our latest post. Infections, however, continue to skyrocket. In the US, there were 130,00 new cases yesterday and hospitalizations have reached a record-high of 61,964. Iowa's governor announces a mask mandate for the first time. Italy locks down more regions as a second wave swamps hospitals there. Texas prisons are the highest in the nation for coronavirus deaths. The rest of today's important news is below.
- The Philadelphia public school district has again put off plans to bring students back to classrooms for at least some in-person instruction. Now, as coronavirus cases multiply in the city and across the state, remote learning will continue “until further notice.” “We have decide to remain 100 percent virtual at this time,” the superintendent, William R. Hite Jr., said Tuesday afternoon.
- Officials in Newark announced on Tuesday a nightly curfew in three ZIP codes with high rates of positive coronavirus test results, effective at 9 p.m. The move comes a day after Gov. Philip D. Murphy of New Jersey ordered all restaurants and bars statewide to close for indoor dining at 10 p.m., starting Thursday.
- It’s been a big puzzle of the pandemic: Why are children so much less likely than adults to become infected with the coronavirus and, if infected, less likely to become ill? A possible reason may be that many children already have antibodies to other coronaviruses, according to researchers at the Francis Crick Institute in London. About one in five of the colds that plague children are caused by viruses in this family. Antibodies to those viruses may also block SARS-CoV-2, the new coronavirus causing the pandemic.
- Restaurants, gyms, cafes and other crowded indoor venues accounted for some 8 in 10 new coronavirus infections in the early months of the U.S. epidemic, according to a new analysis that could help officials around the world now considering curfews, partial lockdowns and other measures in response to renewed outbreaks.
- Gov. Pete Ricketts of Nebraska said on Tuesday that he would go into quarantine after dining with someone who tested positive, just a day after announcing new measures to halt an alarming spike in virus cases and hospitalizations.
- Brazil said on Monday that it had halted a late-stage trial of a Chinese vaccine, which had been considered a global front-runner in the race to develop a protective shot for the coronavirus, after a “serious adverse” reaction in a participant.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Monday November 9th.
As of Monday evening, there are over 50.2 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 10.1 million cases and over 238,000 deaths. There's promising vaccine news and some stimulus news. In the Senate, Mitch McConnell said Congress should pass a limited stimulus bill by year end, but Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said this Republicans plan is "completely inadequate". Pfizer announced positive early results from its coronavirus vaccine trial, cementing the lead in a frenzied global race that has unfolded at record-breaking speed. Early data shows the vaccine is more than 90% effective. At least 3 people at the White House election party last week have tested positive, including Ben Carson, the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. President-elect Biden announced his virus advisory board today. What is the future of the airline industry? In today's Skip post we talked to a leading expert in the airline industry to help answer that question. The rest of today's important news is below and we hope you've had a good Monday.
- New York City is seeing a spike in cases, and, according to the Mayor, is dangerously close to a second wave. There have been over 1,000 cases identified 5 days in a row now (compared to the national average of over 100,000 per day).
- The Food and Drug Administration has granted emergency authorization of a Covid-19 treatment made by Eli Lilly that was given to Chris Christie, the former New Jersey governor, when he was infected with the coronavirus. The decision, announced on Monday by the agency, applies only to people newly infected with the virus, and came with a warning that it should not be used in hospitalized patients. The treatment is approved for people 12 and older, who have tested positive, and who are at risk for developing a severe form of Covid-19 or being hospitalized for the condition. That includes people who are over 65 and obese, the agency said — a key group that early studies have shown can benefit the most from the treatment.
- President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. named Dr. Rick Bright, a former top vaccine official in the Trump administration who submitted a whistle-blower complaint to Congress, as a member of a Covid-19 panel to advise him during the transition, officials announced Monday.
- As coronavirus cases have surged to records across the United States, Gov. Philip D. Murphy of New Jersey laid out new restrictions for the state on Monday, calling for restaurants and nightclubs to shut down indoor service at 10 p.m. starting Thursday, and saying that no one may be seated directly at the bar.
- The drug maker Pfizer announced on Monday that an early analysis of its coronavirus vaccine trial suggested the vaccine was robustly effective in preventing Covid-19, a promising development as the world has waited anxiously for any positive news about a pandemic that has killed more than 1.2 million people. Pfizer, which developed the vaccine with the German drug maker BioNTech, released only sparse details from its clinical trial, based on the first formal review of the data by an outside panel of experts.
- Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, said Monday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus, becoming the latest leader to contract the virus despite the extensive protective measures available to a head of state.
- Hungary and Portugal are the latest European countries to adopt new measures like curfews and limits on gatherings to curb rapid rises in new coronavirus cases.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Friday November 6th.
As of Friday evening, there are over 49.1 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 9.7 million cases and over 235,000 deaths. An astonishing 121,500 cases were recorded in the US yesterday, and cases continue to skyrocket with no clear plateau in site. The stock market had its best week since April, in large part due to positive election news (split control of the House and Senate). There's also positive stimulus news, as Mitch McConnell and Nancy Pelosi both want to push for a stimulus deal in the coming weeks. We covered this in today's video update. Biden continues to increase his lead in Pennsylvania. Two minor news outlets, Business Insider and VOX, have already announced Biden as a winner but no major news networks have yet and they will wait until they are "99.5%" sure of a winner. The counting continues. Arizona expects to announce tens of thousands of new ballots within the next hour which may help networks declare a winner in that state. We're continuing to do real-time election updates on our app so you don't miss any important state announcements. You've already been very patient. The very important COVID news below and we hope you have a safe and healthy weekend.
- Surges in the United States and Europe have driven the daily global case count to an ominous high: New cases surpassed 600,000 for the first time on Thursday. More than 49 million people have been infected since the pandemic began, with a harrowing total of 50 million cases expected in the coming days, according to a New York Times database.
- With a surge of coronavirus patients straining hospitals in El Paso, the Department of Defense on Friday sent three military medical teams to the Texas border city to assist with the care of patients. Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement that he welcomed the deployment of the teams — each made up of approximately 20 Air Force personnel — and said they would be “crucial to our efforts in reducing Covid-19 hospitalizations in El Paso.”
- More Europeans are seriously ill with the coronavirus than ever before, new hospital data for 21 countries shows, surpassing the worst days in the spring and threatening to overwhelm stretched hospitals and exhausted medical workers. In the Czech Republic, the worst-hit nation in recent weeks, one in 1,300 people is currently hospitalized with Covid-19. And in Belgium, France, Italy and other countries in Western Europe, a new swell of patients has packed hospitals to levels last seen in March and April.
- A quarter of a million coronavirus infections have been reported at colleges and universities across the United States, according to a New York Times survey, as schools across the nation struggle to keep outbreaks in check. The bulk of the cases have occurred since students returned for the fall semester, with more than 38,000 new cases reported in the past two weeks alone.
- A spike in cases in recent weeks has left New Jersey on the cusp of new restrictions meant to keep the coronavirus at bay, officials said on Friday, as the state surpassed 2,000 new cases on a third consecutive day for the first time since early May.
- A study of grocery store employees in Boston found an alarmingly high rate of asymptomatic infection among workers, suggesting that grocery workers should be regularly tested and scrutinized more closely for the public health implications of their role. In a study of 104 workers from one unnamed store, all of whom were required to be tested after one co-worker was infected, 20 percent of the staff tested positive. Of those, three-quarters had no symptoms, according to the study, which was published last week in the journal Occupational & Environmental Medicine.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Thursday November 5th.
As of Thursday evening, there are over 48.5 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 9.6 million cases and over 234,000 deaths. For the first time ever, the US surpassed the 100,000 daily infection mark, with over 107,000 new infections yesterday. 23 states have set weekly records in total cases and hospitals are feeling the strain of surging caseloads. A nasal spray blocked infection in lab animals, raising hopes for a new weapon against the virus. Lawmakers are discussing the possibility of finally passing a new stimulus bill. Stocks continue to rise this week in part because it looks as though a split House (Democrat-controlled) and Senate (Republican-controlled) will be good for a new stimulus bill. Speaking of the election: If you're curious about how the vote counting is going tonight, tomorrow and through Friday evening, follow our real-time election updates on our app. We're updating at every significant news juncture. For example, Georgia expects to count all their remaining ballots tonight. Or if you want something a bit lighter, read our latest post about the 5 countries that have stopped COVID and how they've done it. The rest of today's important COVID news is below.
- A nasal spray that blocks the absorption of the coronavirus completely protected ferrets it was tested on, according to a small study released Thursday by an international team of scientists. The study, which was limited to animals and has not yet been peer-reviewed, was assessed by several health experts at the request of The New York Times. If the spray, which the scientists described as nontoxic and stable, is proved to work in humans, it could provide a new way to fight the pandemic, with a daily spritz up the nose acting like a vaccine.
- Children who become infected with the coronavirus produced weaker antibodies and fewer types of them than adults do, according to a new study published Thursday in the journal Nature Immunology. The findings suggest that children, who have powerful innate immunity, tend to vanquish the virus more rapidly, before it gains a foothold in the body. That hints at why most children are spared from Covid-19’s more severe symptoms, and may also explain why they are less likely than adults to spread the virus to others.
- Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City announced on Thursday that local officials were deploying case investigators and setting up more than 10 new testing sites in response to a concerning rise in virus positivity rates on Staten Island. Two ZIP codes in the borough, 10305 and 10314, have reported positivity rates of over 3 percent, the mayor’s office said, though local officials said the uptick was caught in its early stages and was ultimately a “narrow problem.”
- The slow resolution of the presidential election, and the growing chance that Democrats and Republicans will divide power in Washington next year, has revived the possibility that lawmakers could reach agreement on a new economic rescue package before Christmas. Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the majority leader, said on Wednesday that reaching a deal on a stimulus bill would be “Job 1” when lawmakers return for the lame-duck congressional session following the elections. It is possible that such a deal could be attached to a bill that would fund the federal government past Dec. 11 — legislation that will be necessary to avoid a government shutdown.
- England began a four-week national lockdown on Thursday, and Greece announced new restrictions nationwide starting this weekend, as Europe confronts a growing wave of coronavirus infections. Under the new measures in England, which replace more localized restrictions, people may leave home only for essential reasons, including exercise and seeking medical care, and retail stores and other nonessential businesses have been ordered to close. Pubs and restaurants can remain open only for food takeout and delivery, but schools and universities will remain open.
- The Labor Department reported on Thursday that 738,000 workers filed new claims for state unemployment benefits last week, virtually unchanged from the previous week as the U.S. economic recovery struggles to keep its footing.
- China on Thursday halted the entry of almost anyone traveling from Bangladesh, Belgium, Britain, India or the Philippines except for Chinese citizens, in the latest move by Beijing to keep out anyone with even a slight chance of being infected with the coronavirus.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Tuesday November 3rd.
As of Tuesday evening, there are over 47.3 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 9.4 million cases and over 232,000 deaths. Yesterday there were over half a million global cases and over 930,000 in the US, the second highest daily total in the US. Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus coordinator, urged officials in a private memo to pursue a more aggressive approach, contradicting President Trump. Battleground states for the US election is also where the virus is currently raging across the US. Speaking of the US election, we're doing hour-by-hour coverage as state polls close tonight. 27 people test positive on the University of Wisconsin football team, and former NFL quarterback John Elway tests positive. The rest of today's important COVID news is below.
- As Americans vote on Tuesday, they do so in the midst of a rapidly escalating coronavirus outbreak that is concentrated in some of the very states that are likely to decide the presidential race. One of the most alarming periods of the virus has arrived just as voters pick a president, and reflects one of the most significant challenges that whoever wins the election will face: More than 93,000 cases were announced across the country on Monday, a higher total than every day of the pandemic except Friday. More than 20 states have set weekly case records, and more than 40 states are seeing a pattern of growing known infections.
- Dr. Deborah L. Birx, who has carefully straddled the line between science and politics as she helps lead the Trump administration’s coronavirus response, delivered a stark private warning on Monday, telling White House officials that the pandemic is entering a new and “deadly phase” that demands a more aggressive approach.
- With the approach of Thanksgiving in the United States and the December holidays during a surge in coronavirus cases, the increased risks presented by travel — either contracting or spreading the virus — are challenging the industry during what is normally one of its busiest seasons. The market research firm Destination Analysts found in a recent Coronavirus Travel Sentiment Index Study, a weekly survey of 1,200 Americans, that 28 percent expected to travel for the holidays. In the same survey, 53 percent said they had traveled for the holidays last year.
- A small liberal arts school in upstate New York, Skidmore College, suspended 46 students over the weekend, the majority of whom had violated rules meant to protect against the coronavirus, a college spokeswoman said.
- Peru’s government reopened Machu Picchu this week after seven months of closure because of the pandemic. The Incan citadel is the country’s biggest tourist attraction, nestled in the mountains near Cusco, and its shuttering has hampered the local economy.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Monday November 2nd.
As of Monday evening, there are over 46.8 million coronavirus cases and over 1.2 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 9.3 million cases and over 231,000 deaths. Friday the case count reached an all-time high in the US at just under 100,000 new cases. A new CDC study say pregnant women face a higher risk of severe illness. Europe has entered a new lockdown phase in the pandemic. An eighth grader has died of Covid-19 complications in Missouri. Massachusetts issues new restrictions and a stay-at-home order advisory. There are 24 hours left in the 2020 US Presidential Election and we give important updates today on the final battleground polls as well as on how to track tomorrow (video). We cover the US election in a special section below as well as the rest of today's important coronavirus news.
We cover the 13 battleground states many which remain close. Trump and Biden continue to campaign this evening in their final push before election day. Over 100 million votes have already been counted, over 2/3rds the total vote in the 2016 election.
Here are 3 states to focus on tomorrow: Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina. The NYTimes data team will give "needle" updates for these states — who's in the lead, Trump or Biden. If Trump loses any of these 3 states, it's likely that he will lose out to Biden. These contests are close and are states that Trump won in 2016. Plus, whoever has won Florida has won the past 6 presidential elections. Here's a video update we did about tracking the election results tomorrow (and stimulus news).
Daily Pandemic Brief for Friday October 30th.
The United States recorded over 99,000 coronavirus cases on Friday, a level reached for the first time since the pandemic began. After eight months battling the virus, nearly two dozen states are reporting their worst weeks for new cases — and none are recording improvements.
Sixteen states reported single-day records for new cases on Friday: Iowa, Kentucky, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Montana, Illinois, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Oregon, Kansas, Ohio, Colorado and Maine. And three states hit record deaths: Tennessee, Montana and New Mexico.
The outbreaks look different across the country, with states close in proximity sharing phases of the pandemic. Some, like North Dakota and South Dakota, have endured an extremely high number of cases for weeks — the Dakotas are ranked first and second nationally in recent cases per capita. Officials in North Dakota reported a single-day record Friday for the second day in a row. Nearby Montana and Wyoming also hit single-day records for new cases on Friday.
In the Midwest, Illinois, Ohio and Michigan are experiencing swift, alarming rises in case counts. In Illinois, new cases have increased nearly 70 percent in two weeks, with more than 8,010 new cases on Friday, the second single-day record in a row. Ohio reported 3,845 new cases on Friday, the second single-day record in a row. And Michigan has been averaging more than 3,000 cases per day for the past week — an increase of 88 percent from the average two weeks ago.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Thursday October 29th.
As of Thursday evening, there are over 44.8 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 9 million cases and over 228,000 deaths. Cases are continuing to surge in the US and in Europe. The US 7-day daily case average is over 75,000. Biden's call for a "national mask mandate" gains traction in public health circles. It almost seems certain that we will cross the 100,000 daily case count within the next week, especially as tens of millions head to polling stations. Speaking of the US election, here's our latest battleground states polling summary, which shows Biden gaining in several key states. Yesterday, the SBA inspector general released a scathing report about potentially tens of billions in fraud in the small business EIDL grant and loan program. Here's our look at the audacious fraud that has allegedly taken place in that program. And as we reported yesterday, here are the 5 states people are leaving and where they're moving during the pandemic. The rest of today's important news is below.
- With daily reports of coronavirus cases in the United States surging to previously unseen heights, averaging more than 75,000 a day over the last week, the country on Thursday crossed the threshold of nine million known infections since the pandemic began. More total cases have been identified in the United States than in any other country, though some nations have had more cases in proportion to their populations.
- Over the past week, a string of prominent public health experts — notably Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease specialist, and Dr. Scott Gottlieb, a former commissioner of food and drugs under President Trump — have said it is time to seriously consider a national mandate to curb the spread of the virus.
- In Belgium, all nonessential hospital work has been postponed to deal with an influx of new Covid-19 patients, whose numbers have nearly doubled in the past week, matching levels seen in the first wave of the pandemic in the spring. Croatia has asked former doctors to come out of retirement to help in hospitals, while National Guard troops have flown from the United States to the Czech Republic to assist overwhelmed health care professionals there.
- The virus is spreading at a swift pace across Montana, one of the Great Plains and Mountain West states that have been reporting major surges in new virus cases. The state ranks fourth in the country for the number of new cases relative to its population — about 70 cases per 100,000 residents — based on a seven-day average, compared to about 23 per 100,000 nationwide, according to a Times database.
- A ninth-grade student who received a false negative result to a required coronavirus test triggered a super-spreading event that infected three-quarters of the 152 students, counselors and staff who attended a faith-based overnight summer school retreat in Wisconsin in July and August.
- The United States reached a milestone, of sorts, when last week the Food and Drug Administration approved the first treatment for Covid-19: Veklury, better known by its scientific name, remdesivir. But the F.D.A.’s decision to grant the drug full approval — which means its manufacturer, Gilead Sciences, can begin marketing it broadly to doctors and patients — has puzzled several outside experts. They say that it may not deserve the agency’s stamp of approval because it is, at best, a mediocre treatment for the disease caused by the coronavirus.
- Hundreds of American hospitals are being targeted in cyberattacks by the same Russian hackers who American officials and researchers fear could sow mayhem around next week’s election. The attacks on American hospitals, clinics and medical complexes are intended to take those facilities offline and hold their data hostage in exchange for multimillion-dollar ransom payments, just as coronavirus cases spike across the United States.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Wednesday October 28th.
As of Wednesday evening, there are over 44.3 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.8 million cases and over 227,000 deaths. France announced it will reimpose a nationwide lockdown. Germany will close bars and restaurants. Cases continue to climb in Europe as well as in the US. The US is at the highest 7-day infection average and has recorded over 500,000 infections in the past week, while Trump continues to say we're rounding the corner. Hospitals in many parts of the US are reaching capacity. Meanwhile, the US election is 6 days away although over 60 million votes have already been cast. Some poll workers are testing positive and voting sites are closed. We continue to track the 13 battleground states and the latest polls. Plus, we wrote about the 5 most common states people are leaving, and the 5 states people are moving to since the pandemic started. The rest of today's important coronavirus news is below.
- Hospitals around the United States are reeling from the spread of the coronavirus, many of them in parts of the country that initially had been spared the worst. Approaching the eve of the election, President Trump has downplayed the steep rise in cases, attributing much of it to increased testing. But the number of people hospitalized for the virus tells a different story, climbing an estimated 46 percent from a month ago and raising fears about the capacity of regional health care systems to respond to overwhelming demand.
- The United States reported a record of more than 500,000 new coronavirus cases over the past week, as states and cities resorted to stricter new measures to contain the virus that is raging across the country, especially the American heartland. The record was broken Tuesday, even as the Trump administration announced what it called its first-term scientific accomplishments, in a news release that included “ENDING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC,” written in bold, capital letters.
- The University of Wisconsin brought its ninth-ranked football team to a halt on Wednesday — and canceled Saturday’s game at the University of Nebraska — after at least a dozen players and staff members tested positive for coronavirus. The university, a member of the Big Ten Conference, said the football program would “pause” for at least seven days.
- The coronavirus has upended the 2020 election season at nearly every turn, emerging as the dominant issue among candidates up and down the ballot, and complicating the way votes are cast across the country, which reported a record number of new cases in the past week. And though more people around the country are casting early ballots to avoid possible exposure on Election Day, election officials have had to temporarily close some early-voting sites after workers at the sites were found to be infected.
- In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio on Wednesday said the city was starting a new program to encourage people to shop safely by allowing small businesses to use the space outside of their stores to display merchandise and conduct transactions.
- Moments after the Los Angeles Dodgers clinched the World Series title on Tuesday night, as their players and coaches mingled excitedly on the field before receiving their trophy, a Fox broadcaster delivered some shocking news: Justin Turner, the Dodgers’ longtime third baseman, had been taken out of the game because he had received a positive result on a coronavirus test.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Tuesday October 27th.
As of Tuesday evening, there are over 43.7 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.8 million cases and over 226,000 deaths. Washington, Oregon, and Nevada join California's vaccine-review plan. Pfizer all but ruled out vaccine results before election day. With exactly 1 week before the US Presidential Election, more than half of 2016 vote is already in. We're tracking the 13 battleground states updating the latest poll numbers on a daily basis. Congress has adjourned until after the election, so any new stimulus deal will most likely have to wait until the end of November or into December, at the earliest. The governor of Illinois orders indoor dining shut down in Chicago. The US virus outlook continues to worsen as more records fall. The rest of today's important news is below.
- A week after Gov. Gavin Newsom of California announced that a panel of experts from his state would independently review any federally approved coronavirus vaccines before they were administered to residents, the governors of Washington, Oregon and Nevada announced they’d join California’s effort. The move comes as leaders across the country face a vaccine-development process that many have said they fear is becoming overly politicized.
- After weeks of dangling the possibility of early coronavirus vaccine results by October, Pfizer’s chief executive said Tuesday that would now be nearly impossible. The announcement, by Dr. Albert Bourla, came on the same day that Pfizer announced third-quarter earnings, and all but ruled out the possibility of early results before the presidential election next Tuesday. President Trump had long sought to tie the possibility of positive vaccine news to his own prospects for re-election.
- Because of the coronavirus surge in Chicago, Gov. J.B. Pritzker of Illinois announced on Tuesday that he was ordering a halt to indoor restaurant dining and bar service in the city, effective at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Oct. 30. Chicago is now averaging more than twice as many coronavirus-related hospital admissions per day as it was a month ago, the governor’s office said, and the share of tests that are coming back positive has almost doubled since the beginning of October.
- Despite President Trump’s very public resistance to mask-wearing for much of this year, a newly released survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that a vast majority of Americans of all ages have been wearing face coverings since April. The data, released in the agency’s weekly Morbidity and Mortality Report, is roughly in line with other polls showing that most Americans report wearing masks, at least when they are inside stores.
- The United States reported more than 74,300 new cases of the coronavirus on Monday, pushing the country’s daily average over the past week above 71,000, the most in any seven-day stretch of the pandemic. Across the country, the outlook continues to worsen. More than 20 states are reporting case numbers at or near record levels. Bars and restaurants are facing new limits. In a handful of places, business curfews have been ordered or field hospitals have opened.
- The Italian government approved a series of measures Tuesday to assist businesses hardest hit by the new restrictions introduced by the government as it sought to control a sharp rise in coronavirus infections in the country.
- We're tracking polling in the 13 battleground states ahead of the Election Day on November 3rd - see which way these battleground states are leaning.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Monday October 26th.
As of Monday evening, there are over 43.2 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.7 million cases and over 225,000 deaths. The US daily infections is up 32% over the past 2 week period. Second stimulus talks between Pelosi and Mnuchin did not go anywhere, and with 8 days until the election, it's almost certain no agreement will be reached by then. El Paso orders a curfew to stem their surge as local hospitals overflow. Idaho puts in place new restrictions as well as cases surge. Newark's mayor orders a curfew for non-essential businesses. Only a quarter of NYC's students have attended in-person classes. Meanwhile, Europe continues to struggle with their surge in cases. We hope you had a good weekend and the rest of today's important news is below
- The drug maker Eli Lilly said on Monday that its antibody treatment was ineffective on patients hospitalized with advanced Covid-19 and that a government-sponsored trial would not administer the drug to new participants. The company said that other trials of the treatment, in people who are not as sick or who have been exposed to the virus, would continue, and that it remained optimistic that the treatment could work if given early in the course of the disease.
- The United States and much of Europe barreled into the new week scrambling to confront surges in new cases that threaten to overwhelm hospitals, with just eight days until the American presidential election. Stock and oil prices dropped Monday in response to a continued stalemate in the United States over additional virus aid and new restrictions to halt a third surge in cases.
- About 6 percent of adults hospitalized from March through May were health care workers, according to the researchers, with more than a third either nurses or nursing assistants. Twenty-seven percent of those hospitalized workers were admitted to the intensive care unit, and 4 percent died during their hospital stay.
- A new study by economists at the University of Kansas has found that counties in the state where residents are obliged to wear masks in public have seen about half as many new coronavirus infections as counties that do not have a mask mandate in force.
- With the coronavirus spreading out of control in many parts of the United States and daily case counts setting records, health experts say it is only a matter of time before hospitals start to reach the breaking point. In some places, it is already happening. There are more than 41,000 Covid-19 patients hospitalized in the United States, a 40 percent rise in the past month. And unlike during the earlier months of the pandemic, more of those patients are being cared for not in metropolitan regions but in more sparsely populated parts of the country, where the medical infrastructure is less robust.
- As it resurges across the United States, the coronavirus is forcing universities large and small to make deep and possibly lasting cuts to close widening budget shortfalls.
Daily Pandemic Brief for Saturday October 24th.
As of Saturday evening, there are over 42.2 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.5 million cases and over 224,000 deaths. 85,000 new cases were recorded yesterday, nearly 10,000 more than the previous daily record set in July — and there are no signs of an approaching plateau. Below we show the latest map of infections, including the Midwest and Mountain West States that are facing the largest surges. Europe is also bracing for a dark winter as cases surges across the continent there, too. President Andrzej Duda of Poland tests positive for Covid-19. The rest of today's important news is below.
- As of Saturday, 15 states have added more cases in the past week than in any other seven-day stretch of the pandemic: Wisconsin, a battleground in the presidential election, Colorado, Kentucky, Illinois, Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, South Dakota, Montana, Arkansas, Alaska, Tennessee, Ohio, Indiana and North Dakota. And four states have added more deaths this week than in previous weeks: Wisconsin, Kentucky, South Dakota and Oklahoma.
- Deaths from the coronavirus in Germany surpassed 10,000 on Saturday, a disconcerting milestone in a country that has been widely admired for its ability to manage the pandemic. The number of new infections in a 24-hour period also reached a record level — 14,714 — although the country’s public health authority said that some of those cases should have been factored in earlier in the week but had not been because of technical issues.
- Late-stage coronavirus vaccine trials run by AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson have resumed in the United States after the companies said Friday that serious illnesses in a few volunteers appeared not to be related to the vaccines. Federal health regulators gave AstraZeneca the green light after a six-week pause, concluding there was no evidence the experimental vaccine had directly caused neurological side effects reported in two participants. The AstraZeneca news was first reported by The Wall Street Journal.
- With early voting underway and the election days away, many U.S. cities and states have imposed safety measures to protect voters and poll workers from exposure to the coronavirus. But polling places could still become “mass gathering events,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned in an advisory released on Friday, adding that measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19 could be improved.
Evening Pandemic Brief for Friday October 23rd.
As of Friday evening, there are over 41.9 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.4 million cases and over 224,000 deaths. Yesterday, the US recorded over 75,000 new infections, the second highest daily total since the pandemic started, and the trend is not looking good. US hospitalizations are up 40% since last month and more details on this alarming trend below. US stimulus talks remain stalled. Vaccine trials were resumed by two major vaccine makers. On college campuses, virus cases keep rising. Meanwhile, cases in Poland skyrocket and the country comes close to a national lockdown. Nepal suspends access to Mount Everest after a local virus case is detected. The rest of today's important news is below and we hope you had a good weekend.
- The number of people hospitalized with the coronavirus in the United States has risen 40 percent in the past month, while the number of new cases approaches record levels and deaths continue to creep up in several heartland states. More than 75,000 cases of the coronavirus were announced in the United States on Thursday, the second-highest daily total nationwide since the pandemic began.
- July 16 was arguably the worst of the pandemic in the United States to that point, set records nationwide. By the end of that 24-hour period, a staggering 75,687 new cases had been reported around the country, the highest count on a single day over the past seven months. Now the nation is approaching that record once more. Thursday ended with 75,064 new cases, the second-highest number of cases on a single day, and the cases continued to mount on Friday, nearing the record amid a new surge of outbreaks as cold weather sets in.
- Late-stage coronavirus vaccine trials run by AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson have resumed in the United States after the companies said Friday that serious illnesses in a few volunteers appeared not to be related to the vaccines. Federal health regulators gave AstraZeneca the green light after a six-week pause, concluding there was no evidence the experimental vaccine had directly caused neurological side effects reported in two participants. The AstraZeneca news was first reported by The Wall Street Journal.
- More than 200,000 coronavirus cases have been identified at U.S. colleges this year, according to a New York Times survey that showed universities continuing to struggle to control major outbreaks. More than 35,000 cases of those cases have been identified since early October. At least 75 virus-related deaths have also been reported from the time the pandemic began.
- More than 170 Australians stranded in Britain will return home on Friday on a government-chartered repatriation flight.
- In Spain, the regional authorities in Madrid will reintroduce lockdowns on Monday around 32 specific areas of the city where the rate of infections has been spiraling.
Evening Pandemic Brief for Thursday October 22nd.
As of Thursday evening, there are over 41.5 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.4 million cases and over 223,000 deaths. Yesterday, the US recorded over 64,000 new infections and the 2-week infection average has increased by 33%. It's nearly certain that in the next couple days the US will reach a new high point for infections. This time smaller cities and rural areas are being affected the most. In good news, the FDA approved remdesivir as the first drug to treat Covid-19, a sign that the FDA feels confident in its safe and effective use for hospitalized patients. After a summer spike, California's cases have fallen and stayed relatively low. The rest of today's important news is below.
- The Food and Drug Administration said Thursday that it had formally approved remdesivir as the first drug to treat Covid-19, a move that indicated the government’s confidence in its safe and effective use for hospitalized patients. The F.D.A. said the antiviral drug had been approved for adults and pediatric patients 12 years of age and older and weighing at least 40 kilograms (about 88 pounds) who require hospitalization for Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, which has killed more than 220,000 people in the United States.
- Just three days after classrooms reopened for in-person learning, teachers in the Houston Independent School District, the seventh-largest public school system in the nation, staged a sickout to protest what they view as lax Covid-19 safety procedures.
- A hospital in Idaho is 99 percent full, and warning that it may have to transfer coronavirus patients to hospitals as far away as Seattle and Portland, Ore. Medical centers in Kansas City, Mo., have turned away ambulances recently because they had no room for more patients. And just outside Milwaukee, a new emergency field hospital set up on the Wisconsin State Fairgrounds admitted its first virus patient this week.
- As parts of Europe have been hit with a second wave of the coronavirus in recent weeks, hospitals are scrambling to prepare for an onrush of Covid-19 patients at a time when bed and intensive care capacity will already be under strain during the winter flu season. Poland has turned its largest stadium into an emergency field hospital. In Belgium and Britain the numbers of Covid-19 patients have doubled in two weeks. And in the Czech Republic, doctors and nurses are falling ill at an alarming rate.
- A senior scientist from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has acknowledged that the agency’s guidance on schools does not reflect the latest science showing that children can become infected with the coronavirus and transmit the virus to others. According to a statement released Thursday by the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, the scientist told the committee on Wednesday that the agency’s guidance on schools is outdated and that three of the documents on school reopening are being updated.
Evening Pandemic Brief for Wednesday October 21st.
As of Wednesday evening, there are over 41 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.3 million cases and over 221,000 deaths. The stock market continued to decline as hopes for a new stimulus bill before the election faded. The Senate Republicans tried to pass a $500 billion package today, but it failed to get enough votes. Meanwhile, Speaker Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin still negotiate on the larger $2 trillion relief package, but key differences still remain. New Jersey Governor Philip Murphy is quarantining after two of his staff members test positive. Swamped with new cases, North Dakota suspends contact tracing. Alaska provides a cautionary tale for colder weather as cases their have spiked in the past couple weeks. Meanwhile, TSA reported 1 million air travelers earlier this week for the first time since mid-March. Here are important air travel trends and updates if you are considering pros and cons of air travel. The rest of today's important news is below. There are 13 days left until US Election Day 2020.
- Boston suspended its attempt to resume in-person learning in public schools on Wednesday, citing the city’s rising tide of cases. After starting the school year remotely for all students last month, Boston began a phased reopening on Oct. 1, allowing about 3,000 high-needs students to attend in-person classes at least two days a week. The next phase, which would have brought kindergartners and pre-kindergarteners back into school buildings, had been scheduled for as soon as mid-October, but was recently delayed.
- Thousands of Covid-19 patients have been given a drug that doctors hoped would prevent deadly complications. But three rigorous studies published this week have cast doubt not just on the drug but on the hypothesis underlying its use. The hypothesis that led to the use of the drug, tocilizumab, for those sickened by the coronavirus made so much sense. Tocilizumab is used for rheumatoid arthritis because it suppresses part of the immune response.
- A California appellate court has ordered San Quentin State Prison, California’s oldest penitentiary, to reduce the number of inmates it holds by 50 percent, after the coronavirus tore through the facility this summer, infecting more than 2,200 inmates and killing 28.
- A group of conservative health care advocates, policy experts and economists is pressing President Trump to modernize the nation’s public health data infrastructure so that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can once again be the primary collector of information about Covid-19.
- Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York announced on Wednesday that some lockdowns in New York City neighborhoods with rising coronavirus cases would be eased, allowing the reopening of schools and businesses that had been shuttered.
- Overwhelmed by a flood of new coronavirus cases, North Dakota is halting its contact tracing efforts, and will instead ask people who test positive to put out the word themselves to their close contacts. The office of Gov. Doug Burgum said in announcing the move that the state needed to reassign 50 National Guard soldiers from contact tracing to help clear a three-day backlog of people who have tested positive but have not yet been notified or assigned to a case investigator.
Evening Pandemic Brief for Tuesday October 20th.
As of Tuesday evening, there are over 40.5 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.2 million cases and over 220,000 deaths. The US has averaged over 60,000 daily cases over the past week and the number continues to climb. It is likely we will hit a new daily infection high in the next few days. Meanwhile, while Pelosi and Mnuchin discussed stimulus terms, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell advised the White House not to make a deal before the election. It is exactly 14 days before the US election and record numbers of early votes have already been cast, either by mail in ballots or early voting, due to the pandemic. As a result of increased hospitalizations in New Mexico, the governor is imposing new restrictions on retail businesses. In one Kansas nursing home, all 62 residents became infected with coronavirus. The Midwest of the US continues to face a surge in infections. More people are hospitalized in Ohio than at any point during the pandemic. The rest of today's important news is below.
- President Trump and other politicians have repeatedly warned that lockdowns and similar measures could cause at least as much distress as they prevent, in particular by increasing the risk of overdoses and suicides because of economic hardship. But the evidence for that claim is sparse; on Monday, a study posted on Medrxiv, a prepublication site, found that in Massachusetts, the suicide rate during the state’s lengthy stay-at-home advisory last spring remained steady, neither increasing nor decreasing.
- Despite an uptick of coronavirus cases in New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania, New York officials said on Tuesday that travelers from those three neighboring states would not be required to quarantine, though each state meets the qualifications for the restriction.
- Argentina has become the fifth country in the world to surpass one million confirmed Covid-19 cases. With a population of around 45 million, Argentina is by far the smallest country on the list, which also includes the United States, India, Brazil and Russia, according to worldwide tracking by The Times.
- Mr. McConnell’s counsel, confirmed by three Republicans familiar with his remarks, threw cold water on President Trump’s increasingly urgent push to enact a fresh round of pandemic aid before he faces voters on Nov. 3. It came just before Ms. Pelosi’s spokesman gave an upbeat assessment of talks on Tuesday between her and Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, saying they had found “common ground as they move closer to an agreement.”
- It has becoming increasingly clear that while most people infected with the coronavirus have a relatively mild disease, symptoms can be gravely serious for some, leading to hospitalization, serious complications and death. But how much more dire are its consequences than those of influenza, which infects an estimated 45 million Americans each year and kills an average of 61,000? Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now have some estimates, based on data from the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Evening Pandemic Brief for Monday October 19th.
As of Monday evening, there are over 40.4 million coronavirus cases and over 1.1 million deaths worldwide from the virus. The US has over 8.2 million cases and over 220,000 deaths. Stocks fell today as hope for a stimulus before the election faded. Speaker Nancy Pelosi gave a Tuesday deadline to reach a stimulus agreement and we are covering the negotiations between her and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. CVS said they will hire 15,000 workers to prepare for the flu season. For the first time since mid-March, US airports screened more than 1 million passengers in a day. Donald Trump called Dr Fauci a "disaster" in comments he made today. European countries increase their lockdowns as infections rise, and the US nears a new daily infection record. The rest of today's important news is below.
Late Stimulus News Monday October 19: Speaker Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Mnuchin spoke for close to an hour today and came together on some key areas. They will continue to talk on Tuesday as well in the hopes of reaching an agreement.
- President Trump attacked Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease expert, in a conference call on Monday with campaign aides, calling the doctor a “disaster” and saying, “People are tired of hearing Fauci and these idiots, all these idiots who got it wrong.” He continued his criticism of Dr. Fauci, the overwhelmingly popular director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, after landing in Arizona for the first of two scheduled rallies in the state, which is experiencing a rise in coronavirus cases.
- Countries across Europe announced new restrictions on Monday in an effort to halt a strong second wave of the virus, as the global tally of cases passed 40 million. Cases have been detected in nearly every country around the world, and at least 1.1 million people have died.
- California will have its own independent panel of experts review any federally approved coronavirus vaccines before they are administered to residents, Gov. Gavin Newsom said on Monday. “Of course we won’t take anyone’s word for it,” he said in a news briefing. He emphasized that the “second set of eyes” on potential vaccines is part of California’s broader efforts to make sure that vaccines get equitably distributed to communities that are most vulnerable.
- Poland’s deputy prime minister and de facto leader, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, is going into quarantine after learning that he had been in contact with someone infected with the coronavirus, a government spokesman said, adding that Mr. Kaczynski, who is 71, “feels well and will continue performing his duties from home.”
- More than a million people passed through airport checkpoints on Sunday, the first time the Transportation Security Administration has screened that many people since mid-March. While that represents a symbolic milestone for the travel industry, U.S. airlines are still losing billions of dollars a month as they brace for much weaker demand for tickets this winter. The number of people screened by the T.S.A. on Sunday was down about 60 percent compared with the same day a year ago.
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