The Past 24 Hours or So – Coronavirus/COVID-19 Update

Read Time: 5 Minutes

Coronavirus/COVID 19 Update

  • 75,821 new cases were reported in the U.S. on Friday – another new single day record.
  • President Trump says he will not issue a national mandate requiring Americans to wear masks in order to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“I want people to have a certain freedom and I don’t believe in that, no,” Trump said in a new Fox News interview. “I don’t agree with the statement that if everyone wore a mask, everything disappears,” he added referencing the CDC director saying the virus could be under control in 4-6 weeks if everyone wore masks.

  • The Business Roundtable, a top corporate lobbying group renewed calls for a “consistent federal and state guidelines on safety measures, including face coverings.”  

The group, chaired by Walmart CEO Doug McMillon which represents the CEOs of America’s biggest companies, said it has been lobbying for those mandates since April. 

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci said the U.S.needs to concentrate on what’s happening right now with coronavirus cases instead of a possible second wave in the fall.

“People keep talking about the possibility of a second wave in the fall — that’s a historic terminology related to another time and another outbreak. I think we need to concentrate on where we are right now.”

Fauci said the US is “essentially still in the first wave.”

  • Lagging test results are hampering US efforts to battle Covid-19. Many labs’ test backlog are causing delays of seven to twelve days. 
  • The White House is blocking CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield and other officials from the agency from testifying before a House Education and Labor Committee hearing on reopening schools next week.
  • A new forecast published by the CDC projects more than 157,000 coronavirus deaths in the United States by August 8.
  • Former Trump administration economist Tomas Philipson said that his team alerted the White House about the dangers of a looming pandemic about three months before Covid-19 is believed to have made its way into the United States.
  • Lowes and Home Depot will require customers to wear masks in their stores. The mask order begins on Monday at Lowes and Wednesday at Home Depot.
  • A new daily record of  237,743 new Covid-19 cases were reported to the World Health Organization. 
  • An unpublished document prepared for the White House coronavirus task force and obtained by the Center for Public Integrity recommends that 18 states in the coronavirus “red zone” for cases should roll back reopening measures amid surging cases.

The following states are in the red zone for cases:

Alabama, Arkansas. Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Utah.

  • The top three per capita states, based on the 7-day average of new cases, are:

Florida – 55.24 cases per 100,000 people

Louisiana – 44.30 cases per 100,000 people

Arizona – 43.06 cases per 100,000 people

  • Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said that he supports local municipalities creating additional restrictions as long as they don’t negate the guidance issued by the state.
  • In Ohio, more than 1,600 new cases were reported on Friday, a single-day record.
  • A coronavirus outbreak has spread through a federal law enforcement training facility in South Carolina, prompting the national employees union to call for a halt to training.

At least 23 students and faculty have tested positive at Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Charleston

  • Georgia Public Health Commissioner Dr. Kathleen Toomey reported an increase of coronavirus cases across Georgia, “not just in urban Atlanta, but also suburban and rural areas.”

The test positivity rate in the state is on average 13.6% and hospitalizations have increased 39% over the past week.

  • The Georgia Department of Public Health reported 3,908 new confirmed casesm 28 new coronavirus-related deaths, and 301 additional hospitalizations.
  • Florida reported 11,466 new cases and 128 new deaths  The state has reported more than 100 deaths for four straight days.
  • Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said he won’t close the state’s gyms, claiming a healthy lifestyle will put people at lower risk for developing severe cases of coronavirus.

“If you are good shape you have a very, very low likelihood of ending up in significant condition as a result of the coronavirus,” DeSantis said

  • Miami Dade Mayor Carlos Giménez (R) said that the county has not exceeded the ICU capacity, although the county’s dashboard showed that the capacity is at 107%.

He explained that hospitals have the ability to add hundreds of ICU beds by converting recovery rooms into ICU rooms.

  • People in Miami, Florida, will no longer get a warning when they fail to wear a mask in public starting Monday. 

Mayor Francis Suarez (R) said the new order will require a fine for the first offense of the city’s mask order. The fine starts at $50 and increases with every additional offense.

  • Miami Beach announced a curfew beginning Saturday for most of its entertainment district, running each night from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.
  • Broward County, Florida enacted a curfew for the entire county to help mitigate the spread of Covid-19.

The nightly curfew is from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. and will last through August 1.

  • There are 140 Miami Police employees and 41 Miami Beach Police officers currently under quarantine.
  • Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R)  said that unless coronavirus conditions change dramatically over the weekend, the state may add 11 counties to its mask requirement. 

Thirteen counties are already under the more restrictive order.

  • Chicago proposed reopening schools this fall with a hybrid learning model. About 50% of the student population would attend school in-person on any given day. Most high school juniors and seniors will do at-home learning full time.
  • Missouri plans to spend $15 million in federal coronavirus aid on promoting tourism in the state, Gov. Mike Parson (R) announced. 
  • Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) said that it’s critical to bring Iowa’s children back to the classroom, and schools will not be allowed to provide more than half of instruction through remote learning unless she authorizes it.
  • Texas reported 174 new Covid-19 related deaths on Friday, surpassing Thursday’s record of 129 deaths in a single day.
  • Corpus Christi Nueces County Director of Public Health Annette Rodriguez said Friday that 85 babies under the age of one have tested positive for Covid-19 there.
  • 10,120 new cases were reported in California on Friday – the state’s second highest single day total.
  • People who do not wear face coverings on California’s Manhattan Beach may face citations of up to $350.

Maskless first offenders in the Southern California beach town will be fined $100, followed by $200 and $350 citations for the second and third violations.

  • The majority of schools in California will not be reopening for in-person education this fall, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) announced.

Schools can start in-person instruction if they are in counties that have not been on the state’s monitoring list for 14 days

  • San Francisco has joined more than 30 other counties on California’s “watch list” due to a rise in Covid-19 hospitalizations, Mayor London Breed (D) said.

Sources:  ABC News, Associated Press, The Atlantic, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, Independent, NBC News, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

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