Coronavirus Live Updates: As U.S. Reopens, Some States See Cases Rise

Coronavirus Live Updates: As U.S. Reopens, Some States See Cases Rise

2020-06-10 14:01:46
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The virus is increasing in many states with new virus cases in Arizona, Florida, North Carolina and more.

The number of cases is increasing in parts of the country, as Americans try to return to their normal routines. And at least 15 cases nationally have been linked to protests, including five National Guard members and one police officer in Nebraska. Health officials on Tuesday in Parsons, Kan., and Stevens Point, Wis., also announced new cases involving people who attended protests.

Total case numbers in Yakima County, Wash., surpassed 5,000 on Tuesday, with 1,100 since the beginning of June. And new cases continue to be identified by the hundreds each day in the Phoenix area. More than 4,000 of Maricopa County’s 14,374 total cases are from June alone. Across the state in the past week, there have been more than 7,000 new cases with upticks in Yuma and Santa Cruz Counties.

In Alaska, where new case reports had slowed to a trickle in May, the number of new cases is among the state’s worst since the start of the pandemic. There have been more than 100 new cases in the past week alone, bringing the state’s total since the beginning of March to 620. Recent outbreaks have been reported among seafood workers and ferry crew members. The state reported its first coronavirus death in more than a month on Tuesday.

Some parts of the South are finally showing signs of progress. New case reports have started trending downward in Alabama and have leveled off in Mississippi. But persistent growth continues in Arkansas, North Carolina and Florida. And in South Carolina, there have been nearly 1,000 new cases in the past two days.

Researchers around the world are developing more than 125 vaccines against the coronavirus. Vaccines typically require years of research and testing before reaching the clinic, but scientists are hoping to produce a safe and effective vaccine by next year.

The New York Times is following the status of those that have reached trials in humans.

There are three phases before a vaccine is approved for use, but some projects have combined early phase trials to speed up the process. Some coronavirus vaccines are now in Phase I/II trials, for example, in which they are tested for the first time on hundreds of people.

Additionally, the U.S. government’s Operation Warp Speed program has selected five vaccine projects to receive billions of dollars in federal funding and support before there’s proof that the vaccines work.

The world economy is facing the most severe recession in a century and could experience a halting recovery with a potential second wave of the virus and as countries embrace protectionist policies, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned in a new report.

A grim economic outlook released by the O.E.C.D. on Wednesday depicted a world economy that is walking on a “tightrope” as countries began to reopen after three months of lockdowns. Considerable uncertainty remains, however, as the prospects and timing of a vaccine remain unknown. Health experts fear that the spread of the virus could accelerate again later this year.

“Extraordinary policies will be needed to walk the tightrope towards recovery,” said Laurence Boone, the O.E.C.D.’s chief economist.

The O.E.C.D., which comprises 37 of the world’s leading economies, predicts that the global economy will contract by 6 percent this year if a second wave of the virus is avoided. If a second wave does occur, world economic output will fall 7.6 percent, before rebounding by 2.8 percent in 2021. The two scenarios are viewed as equally plausible.

The report is slightly more ominous than other recent forecasts from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

Republicans are expected to move the convention to Jacksonville from Charlotte.

Republicans expect to move their national convention from Charlotte, N.C., to Jacksonville, Fla., a shift planned after Mr. Trump told officials in North Carolina that he did not want to use social distancing measures aimed at halting the spread of the coronavirus, according to three senior Republicans.

The decision could change, the Republicans cautioned, but as of now, officials are on track to announce the new location as early as Thursday.

Jacksonville has been Republicans’ top choice for days, after Mr. Trump told the governor of North Carolina, Roy Cooper, a Democrat, that he needed an answer about whether Charlotte could accommodate the convention in August with a promise that there would not be social distancing.

Once they decided to uproot the convention, Mr. Trump’s aides and Republican officials had wanted to relocate to a state and city controlled by Republicans. Jacksonville is the most populous city in Florida, where Ron DeSantis, a Republican and an ally of Mr. Trump, is the governor. Jacksonville’s mayor, Lenny Curry, is a longtime Republican official.

New reported cases of the coronavirus are on the rise in both North Carolina and Florida.

What exactly the event will look like remains unclear. Conventions normally last for four days, with thousands of party officials, delegates, donors, members of the news media and others coming together for speeches and votes.

Mr. Cooper had repeatedly told Mr. Trump that it was too early to make any promises about social distancing, and state health officials said the Republican National Committee and the host committee in Charlotte provided a requested plan for safely holding the event.

A Syrian pharmacist shares his story fighting the coronavirus.

Hosam al-Ali is an activist who has supported the democracy protests against Syria’s authoritarian president since they began nine years ago, and he knows a thing or two about battling adversity. But Mr. al-Ali, 35, is more than a little worried about his new adversary: the coronavirus.

A pharmacist in Idlib, the last province still in the hands of Syrian opposition groups, Mr. al-Ali volunteered to be the main virus-response coordinator in his region.

As he set to work, Mr. al-Ali began keeping an audio diary, which he shared day by day with Carlotta Gall, the Istanbul bureau chief for The New York Times.

South Korea on Wednesday began requiring gyms, nightclubs, karaoke bars and concert halls to register visitors through smartphone QR codes, in the country’s latest effort to fight a new wave of coronavirus infections linked to entertainment venues.

Until now, such facilities had mostly asked their customers to write down their identities and contact information in rosters before entering. But when the authorities tried to track down customers after the new infections began cropping up last month, they found that much of the information was fake.

Under the new system, nightclubs and other facilities must install QR scanners, and customers must download a QR code that contains their basic personal information. Any QR codes that the government collects are to be automatically destroyed after four weeks.

South Korea’s project is just the latest effort worldwide to harness common consumer technology to track new cases. But privacy concerns have made the approach slower to catch on in the United States and Britain. And in China, the government’s virus-tracking software has prompted fears that it will randomly collect citizens’ information in the name of disease prevention.

There has not yet been a significant public debate over South Korea’s new tracking system, although that may come as the government rolls it out.

Since last month, South Korea has eased its social-distancing restrictions, saying it was confident in its virus-containment strategy. But it has also urged people to stick to preventive measures and said its goal is to keep the daily caseload below 50 until a vaccine is available.

South Korea’s daily caseload has fluctuated between 38 and 57 over the past week, and the country reported 50 new cases on Wednesday.

Here are other developments from around the world:

Mnuchin plans to paint an optimistic picture of the economy’s trajectory.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will defend the Trump administration’s efforts to prop up the economy on Wednesday, arguing that the extraordinary array of stimulus measures will set the stage for a dramatic recovery in the second half of the year.

Mr. Mnuchin, who will testify before the Senate’s small business committee, is expected to offer an optimistic outlook about the trajectory of the economy. He will highlight the recent employment figures that were better than expected and point to data that show Americans have been building their savings in recent months and will be ready to spend as the economy reopens.

“We remain confident that the overall economy will continue to improve dramatically in the third and fourth quarter,” Mr. Mnuchin will say, according to his prepared testimony.

The Treasury secretary will appear with Jovita Carranza, the administrator of the Small Business Administration, to update lawmakers on the status of the Paycheck Protection Program, a lending initiative that was created by Congress in March as a lifeline for small businesses, allowing them to pay workers and overhead during the shutdown.

The program, initially plagued by glitches and other problems, has approved about $510 billion of loans, and an additional $150 billion is available.

Lawmakers on the committee are expected to question Mr. Mnuchin and Ms. Carranza about what a next phase of the program might look like and what additional changes might be beneficial to small businesses.

They are also likely to face questions about measures to ensure that businesses owned minorities and women have sufficient access to loans. A report by the S.B.A.’s inspector general found last month that the administration failed to prioritize underserved groups in accordance with the legislation.

The study concluded that about 34 percent of the lineages detected had arrived from Spain, 29 percent from France, 14 percent from Italy and 23 percent from other countries.

The authors also estimate that 80 percent of “importation events” — new arrivals of the virus — took place during the one-month period between Feb. 28 and March 29.

Britain advised against nonessential travel to China on Jan. 28. But the government did not advise until March 17 against nonessential travel overseas

The authors note that as a result the volume of incoming arrivals remained high as the global rate of infection was soaring during the first half of that month.

“Notably there was a period in mid-March when inbound travel to the U.K. was still substantial and coincided with high numbers of active cases elsewhere,” the authors of the study wrote.

How the virus compares with 100 years of deadly events.

Only the worst disasters completely upend normal patterns of death, overshadowing, if only briefly, everyday causes like cancer, heart disease and car accidents.

Reporting was contributed by Choe Sang-Hun, Mitch Smith, Eileen Sullivan, Jonathan Corum, Abdi Latif Dahir, Sheri Fink, Josh Katz, David D. Kirkpatrick, Iliana Magra, Allison McCann, Richard C. Paddock, Alan Rappeport, Christopher F. Schuetze, Dera Menra Sijibat, Natasha Singer, Jenna Smialek, Kaly Soto, Jin Wu, Carl Zimmer and Maggie Haberman.


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