The virus has killed more than 23,000 people worldwide and continues to spread at a rapid pace. Efforts to curb the outbreak have led to the global disruption of daily life and the economy, as schools and workplaces shutter in hopes of slowing transmission.
HuffPost reporters around the world are tracking the pandemic and the measures being taken to flatten the curve of transmission.
Read the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic below. (To see the latest updates, you may need to refresh the page. All times are Eastern. For earlier updates on the pandemic, go here.)
President Donald Trump said Monday that he believes New York, the state with the highest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 by far, should be “fine” and has “more than enough supplies” to handle the outbreak. His statement came just days after New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said his state needed 30,000 ventilators based on projections.
“New York is really in trouble, but I think it’s going to end up being fine,” Trump said during a nearly hourlong phone interview with “Fox & Friends.” “We’re giving them a lot of things that they never thought they’d be getting.”
The president complained that the federal government had shipped 4,000 ventilators to New York but the state hasn’t used them yet. Cuomo has said repeatedly that New York is creating a stockpile of ventilators based on what could be needed during the potential apex of the outbreak expected to occur in the next few weeks.
“We’re planning for that worst-case scenario, which the models predict,” Cuomo said during a news conference Saturday.
― Hayley Miller
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will quarantine himself after an aide tested positive for COVID-19, his office said Monday.
The 70-year-old took a test for the coronavirus and plans to remain isolated until either the results come back negative or he is cleared by medical doctors. Advisers that he had been in contact with are also voluntarily quarantining themselves, his office said.
— Nina Golgowski
The 2020 Olympic Games are now set to take place an entire year later, with the opening ceremony scheduled for July 23, 2021, and the closing ceremony on August 8, organizers in Tokyo announced.
— Marina Fang
The daily infection rate in Spain has slowed since the introduction of lockdown measures, with new cases now rising at roughly 12% a day, compared with around 20% before March 25.
The country’s total number of coronavirus cases rose today to 85,195 from 78,797 on Sunday, becoming the third country to surpass China after the U.S. and Italy, according to the latest data.
HuffPost Spain reports (in Spanish) that the death toll rose by 812 in the past 24 hours to 7,340, 26 fewer than recorded the day before.
It was also revealed today that Fernando Simon, the health emergency official who leads Spain’s response to COVID-19, has tested positive for the virus.
— James Martin
Up to 200 Amazon employees at the e-commerce giant’s Staten Island, New York, warehouse are planning to walk off the job Monday after at least one worker at the facility tested positive for COVID-19.
Organizers said workers would remain on strike until the company agrees to shutter the warehouse — where some 2,500 full-time employees work — and sanitize it.
“People are scared … We’re unsafe. There are thousands of employees at risk,” Chris Smalls, a manager assistant who is leading the walkout, told the New York Post.
Workers in at least 13 of Amazon’s U.S. warehouses have tested positive for COVID-19 since mid-March.
— Dominique Mosbergen
Cabin crew in the U.K. will help staff the new hospitals built to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. Staff at Virgin Atlantic and EasyJet have been invited to volunteer at the new 4,000-bed clinic being built at the Excel center in east London, and those planned in Birmingham and Manchester in England.
The news came as EasyJet announced it was grounding its entire fleet due to “unprecedented travel restrictions” caused by the Covid-19 outbreak, with bosses saying “there can be no certainty of the date for restarting commercial flights.”
— James Martin
New York state’s death toll from the coronavirus pandemic surpassed 1,000 on Sunday, less than a month after the state’s first confirmed infection.
New York City reported Sunday evening that its death toll had risen to 776. The state’s total coronavirus fatalities aren’t expected to be officially released until Monday, but the at least 250 additional deaths recorded outside the city as of Sunday morning makes New York’s total at least 1,026.
The first known case in New York state was confirmed March 1 in a health care worker who had recently returned from Iran. By March 20 ― when Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a stay-at-home order for the state ― 35 New Yorkers had been killed by COVID-19. Nine days later, that number has exceeded 1,000.
Coronavirus has ripped through New York at lightning speed, making it the epicenter of the outbreak in the United States. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Sunday that the city had just one week’s worth of medical supplies to care for infected residents, and that area hospitals are in desperate need for ventilators.
— Sanjana Karanth
Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, the wife of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, said she has recovered from COVID-19 after falling ill earlier this month. The former TV host revealed the news on her social media accounts on Saturday evening. “The good news is I have a clear bill of health now,” Grégoire Trudeau said in an Instagram video. “So I’m super happy. So it’s all good.”
It’s unclear exactly how Grégoire Trudeau contracted the highly contagious virus. She participated in an arena event in London earlier this month. Actor Idris Elba also attended the function and later tested positive for COVID-19.
Maria Mercader, the veteran CBS News journalist who for decades helped the network deliver breaking news around the world, died from coronavirus on Sunday at age 54.
Mercader had been on medical leave for an unrelated issue since late February, and died from COVID-19 in a New York hospital. According to CBS, she had been fighting cancer and related illnesses for over 20 years, “and was an inspiration each time she returned to work after a setback threatened to end her life.”
Mercader started at CBS News in 1987 in the network’s Page Program before helping produce several high-profile stories while working on the foreign and national desks. Her most recent role was director of talent strategy, helping lead the network’s efforts in pushing workplace diversity for the past four years.
“Even more than her talents as a journalist, we will miss her indomitable spirit,” Susan Zirinsky, the president of CBS News, said in a statement. “Maria was part of all of our lives.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said health authorities will not cut any corners when it comes to ensuring masks provided by China meet the necessary standards for protecting Canadian health care workers from COVID-19.The comment follows reports that the Dutch government is recalling around 600,000 defective masks that were recently shipped from China and had been distributed to various hospitals in the Netherlands.
China has donated medical supplies to help Canada fight the coronavirus, according to a tweet from the Chinese embassy on Saturday.
New York City is setting up an emergency field hospital in Central Park to help treat coronavirus patients, giving another sobering look at the severity of the crisis in the city.
Volunteer workers with international Christian relief organization Samaritan’s Purse could be seen assembling tents in the East Meadow to help with overflow from the Mount Sinai health system, according to the Gothamist. The organization is the same one that opened an emergency field hospital in northern Italy earlier this month.
The field hospital will have 68 beds specially equipped with generator-powered respiratory care and ICU capability. The first patients will likely come from Mount Sinai Brooklyn and Mount Sinai Queens, according to a press release from Samaritan’s Purse. The hospital is expected to be fully operational by Tuesday.
“People are dying from the coronavirus, hospitals are out of beds, and the medical staff are overwhelmed,” Samaritan’s Purse President Franklin Graham said in a statement. “We are deploying our Emergency Field Hospital in New York to help carry this burden.”
New York City currently has more than 32,300 confirmed coronavirus cases and 678 deaths, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Sunday.
― Sanjana Karanth
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said his office was flooded with calls from nervous New Yorkers after President Trump said he was considering an “enforceable quarantine” of New York and surrounding areas. A few hours after sharing this idea with reporters, Trump announced his support of a travel advisory instead.
“I can’t tell you how many people called all night long about the mandatory quarantine comment that the president made as he was getting into a helicopter,” Cuomo said at a press conference Sunday. “People are so on edge, it really panicked people.”
— Nina Golgowski
The coronavirus could infect millions of Americans and potentially kill hundreds of thousands of people nationwide, Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CNN’s “State Of The Union” on Sunday.
He noted, however, that the estimate isn’t a “firm idea” but is based off of scientific models.
“The model is only as accurate as your assumptions,” Fauci said. “Looking at what we’re seeing now, I would say between 100 and 200,000 ... deaths. We’re going to have millions of cases. I just don’t think that we really need to make a projection when it’s such a moving target, that you could so easily be wrong and mislead people.”
— Hayley Miller
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Sunday tore into President Donald Trump’s delayed response to the novel coronavirus, saying his decision to initially downplay its severity cost lives.
“His denial at the beginning was deadly,” Pelosi told CNN’s “State of the Union.” “His delaying ... of getting equipment to where it’s needed is deadly. And now I think the best thing to do is to prevent more loss of life.”
“As the president fiddles, people are dying,” she added. “We just have to take every precaution.”
As the virus spread across China, Europe and the U.S., Trump falsely claimed in late February that concerns over its potential effects were part of a “new hoax” pushed by the Democrats. About two weeks later, the president claimed he has “always” viewed the pandemic as “very serious.”
― Hayley Miller
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) said Sunday that the New Orleans area could run out of ventilators next week.
“We’re on the trajectory currently to exceed our capacity in the New Orleans area on ventilators by about April the 4th,” he told NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
New Orleans is considered to be one of the country’s virus hotspots. There are more than 1,200 confirmed cases of the virus there and at least 70 people have died.
“We obviously have a spread that is growing faster than we would like to see,” Edwards told ABC’s “This Week” during a subsequent interview. “We need people to practice the mitigation measures we have in place ... so that we can slow the spread.”
― Hayley Miller
Deborah Birx, a medical doctor and the White House coronavirus task force’s response coordinator, warned Sunday that “no metro area will be spared” during the pandemic.
“The sooner we react and the sooner the states and the metro areas react and ensure that they have put in full mitigation ... then we’ll be able to move forward,” Birx told NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “Every metro area should assume that they will have an outbreak equivalent to New York.”
The U.S. has over 124,000 confirmed cases of the virus, with more than 30,000 of them in New York City, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. At least 2,100 people nationwide have died from COVID-19.
― Hayley Miller
At least 66 residents of a Maryland nursing home have tested positive for COVID-19, Gov. Larry Hogan said on Saturday night, noting that state and local officials have taken “urgent steps” to protect other residents and staff who may have been exposed to the virus.
The outbreak at Pleasant View Nursing Home in Carroll County has pushed the number of positive coronavirus cases in Maryland to over 1,000, The Baltimore Sun reported. At least 10 people in the state have died from the disease to date.
— Dominique Mosbergen
President Donald Trump asked the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to issue a “strong” travel advisory on New York, New Jersey and Connecticut on Saturday night after suggesting a federal quarantine on those states earlier in the day.
“A quarantine will not be necessary,” Trump said, walking back his earlier statements.
Two hours after Trump’s announcement, the CDC officially issued the travel advisory, urging residents to refrain from “domestic travel” for at least 14 days.
Workers who are considered “employees of critical infrastructure industries,” including truckers, public health professionals, financial service employees and food supply workers, are exempt from the advisory.
— Carla H. Russo
The death toll of the coronavirus outbreak has reached 2,000 victims in the U.S., doubling within the span of two days, The Washington Post reported, citing state health departments.
The first 1,000 deaths were over the course of a month, after the first death was recorded in Washington state on Feb. 29.
New York accounts for more than a third of the national death toll with at least 728 victims.
— Carla H. Russo
A child under the age of 1 who tested positive for the coronavirus has died in Chicago, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) said Saturday. A state public health official said a full investigation was underway to conclusively determine whether the infant’s death came as a direct result of COVID-19.
If confirmed, the child would appear to be the youngest individual to die from COVID-19 worldwide. Although the virus is generally mild in children, infants are much more susceptible to the most serious of its symptoms. That’s in part because their immune systems are still being trained to identify and respond to threats.
— Sara Boboltz
President Donald Trump is considering a quarantine of New York and the surrounding areas as part of a short-term plan to combat the coronavirus.
“We’d like to see New York quarantined because it’s a hotspot — New York, New Jersey, maybe one or two other places, certain parts of Connecticut,” Trump told reporters outside the White House.
Shortly after he made those comments, Trump tweeted that a decision about whether to quarantine the region would be made shortly.
“A decision will be made, one way or another, shortly,” he wrote.
In response, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said he doesn’t know how such an action would be “legally enforceable.”
“I can tell you, I don’t even like the sound of it. Not even understanding what it is, I don’t like the sound of it,” Cuomo added.
— Carla Russo
More than 10,000 people have died of the coronavirus in Italy, according to Johns Hopkins data. The country has more than 92,000 confirmed cases, but was overtaken in total number of cases this week by the United States, which has tracked more than 112,000.
While the World Health Organization estimated on March 3 that the COVID-19 mortality rate is about 3.4% — many, many times higher than the seasonal flu — certain countries, such as Italy, have seen an even higher mortality rate.
— Sara Boboltz
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) announced Saturday that the state would be moving its presidential primary, originally scheduled for April 28, to June 23.
“Public health is our number one priority and we will carry out this vital democratic process at a safer date,” Cuomo said.
A number of other states ― Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island ― along with U.S. territory Puerto Rico have pushed back their primaries due to the coronavirus crisis. Alaska, Hawaii and Wyoming are holding their April elections by mail only, and Wisconsin is planning a similar measure.
― Sara Boboltz
President Donald Trump approved Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s (D) emergency declaration request on Friday, amid his repeated criticisms on Twitter and Sean Hannity’s Fox News program. The emergency declaration makes federal aid available to the state, which currently has 3,657 confirmed COVID-19 cases, according to Johns Hopkins data.
Whitmer announced Saturday morning that Michigan had received 112,800 N95 masks from the national stockpile, with 8,000 more masks on their way.
“We’ll keep working hard along with FEMA and the White House to get more of the PPE we need to keep Michiganders safe,” she said.
Earlier in the week, the governor had made a plea for personal protective equipment, which has been in short supply nationally, saying that it appeared the federal government had been blocking the supplies from reaching her state. Trump characteristically lashed out in response, tweeting late Friday that Whitmer “doesn’t have a clue.”
Trump revealed Friday at a press conference that Vice President Mike Pence has been quietly calling governors who criticize the federal response to the coronavirus crisis. Referring to Whitmer as “the woman in Michigan,” Trump said he told Pence, “If they don’t treat you right, don’t call.”
― Sara Boboltz
Spain’s coronavirus death toll rose by 832 cases overnight to 5,690, the health ministry said on Saturday, marking a new high in the daily rise in fatalities. The total number of those infected rose to 72,248 from 64,059 on Friday.
Democratic Rep. Ayanna Pressley (Mass.) announced that she has tested negative for coronavirus after experiencing flu-like symptoms.
“As an asthmatic and as someone who had been in contact with a colleague who tested positive for COVID-19, it was determined that I fell into a high risk category,” the congresswoman said in a statement. “I am, however still recovering from the flu, but feeling much better and continuing to work remotely with my team on COVID-19 response.”
Several members of Congress have tested positive for the virus, including Rep. Joe Cunningham (D-S.C.) earlier Friday. Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) said Friday that she had tested negative. Dozens more lawmakers are self-isolating due to possible exposure.
The House voted Friday to pass an economic stimulus package to help Americans survive the broad economic shutdown meant to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.
— Sarah Ruiz-Grossman
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) issued a statewide moratorium on evictions Friday, barring landlords from removing tenants who can’t pay their rent during the coronavirus crisis. The moratorium, issued via executive order, will be in effect through May 31.
“Many Californians are experiencing or will experience substantial losses of income as a result of business closures, the loss of hours or wages, or layoffs related to COVID-19, hindering their ability to keep up with their rent, and leaving them vulnerable to eviction,” reads the order. “Minimizing evictions during this period is critical to reducing the spread of COVID-19 in vulnerable populations by allowing all residents to stay home.”
Previously, Newsom had authorized local governments to temporarily stop evictions in their cities and/or counties. While many of the state’s major cities, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, did stop evictions, the policy will now protect all California renters.
— Mollie Reilly
Rep. Joe Cunningham (D-S.C.) announced Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19 after entering self-quarantine on March 19 due to contact with another infected member of Congress.
“While I otherwise feel fine, since March 17 I have been unable to smell or taste, which I learned this week is a potential symptom of COVID-19,” Cunningham said in a statement. He sought testing on Thursday on advice from a doctor. “I was set to come out of quarantine tonight at midnight, and potentially go to DC tomorrow to vote for the stimulus bill,” he said in a video posted to Twitter.
Cunningham will now remain in quarantine until next week. “If anyone has any more recommendations besides ‘Tiger King’ on Netflix, send them my way,” added the congressman.
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) became the first member of Congress to test positive for the virus on March 18, followed by Rep. Ben McAdams (D-Utah) later that day and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on March 22.
— Sara Boboltz
Infections in Italy have yet to reach their peak, officials said on Friday, as Italians were warned that lockdown restrictions would have to be extended beyond April 3. The death toll today surged by 919 to 9,134, easily the highest daily tally since the coronavirus epidemic emerged on Feb. 21.
Prior to Friday’s figure, Italy’s largest daily toll was registered on March 21, when 793 people died. The country now has 86,498 cases, surpassing China to record the grim distinction of having the second-most infections in the world (behind the U.S.), with the latest data showing no let-up in new infections and stifling hopes of a possible turnaround.
“We haven’t reached the peak and we haven’t passed it,” the chief of the Superior Health Institute, Silvio Brusaferro, told reporters, adding that there were, however, “signs of a slowdown” in the numbers of people becoming infected. “When the descent begins, how steep it is will depend on our behaviour,” Brusaferro said.
Italy was the first Western country to introduce restrictions on movement after uncovering the outbreak five weeks ago. It has progressively tightened the curbs, banning all nonessential activities until at least next Friday.
— James Martin
After President Donald Trump suggested New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) was lying about the number of ventilators the state needs to combat a pending wave of hospitalizations as the coronavirus pandemic worsens, Cuomo responded by saying the numbers were based on facts.
“I don’t operate on opinion. I operate on facts, data, projections,” Cuomo said at his daily press conference, explaining that the numbers are based on projections from public health experts. “All the projections say you could have an apex of 40,000 ventilators. Make the decisions based on the data and the science.”
“I hope we don’t need the 30,000 ventilators,” Cuomo added, saying he hoped for “some natural weather change” that could potentially wipe out the virus, appearing to refer to Trump’s spurious suggestion last month that the virus would simply disappear as the weather gets warmer.
“But that’s my hope. That’s my emotion,” Cuomo said. “The numbers say you may need 30,000.”
Trump said Thursday night that he had “a feeling” the numbers were wrong and didn’t “believe” them.
“I have a feeling that a lot of the numbers that are being said in some areas are just bigger than they’re going to be,” he told Fox News’ Sean Hannity. “I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators. You know, you go into major hospitals sometimes, they’ll have two ventilators. And now all of a sudden, they’re saying can we order 30,000 ventilators?”
— Marina Fang
U.S. Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) is the latest member of Congress to report the results of a COVID-19 test, saying she tested negative after experiencing possible symptoms beginning last week.
Porter said she will continue to self-quarantine in her home in Southern California and conduct congressional business remotely. The representative has been self-quarantining since last week, when she started to experience possible symptoms including a fever and fatigue, and received a test earlier this week.
“I have to assume this is (the coronavirus),” she told the Orange County Register Wednesday. “If it’s not, that would be really welcome news. But I can’t take any chances, and none of us can take any chances.”
Several members of Congress have tested positive for the virus, and dozens more are self-isolating due to possible exposure. The House is expected to vote Friday on the economic stimulus package that was passed by the Senate on Wednesday.
— Marina Fang
More alarming figures are emerging from Spain where officials have announced another 769 deaths overnight, a new record in the number of fatalities recorded in 24 hours.
HuffPost Spain reports (in Spanish) that the death toll in the country now stands at 4,858. The total number of those infected rose to 64,059 from 56,188 on Thursday.
— James Martin
“Over the last 24 hours I have developed mild symptoms and tested positive for coronavirus,” Johnson wrote on Twitter. “I am now self-isolating, but I will continue to lead the government’s response via video-conference as we fight this virus. Together we will beat this. #StayHomeSaveLives.”
— James Martin
Delhi has begun placing quarantine stickers on the houses of people suspected of being infected with coronavirus, leading to harassment and vilification of the city’s residents, HuffPost India reports.
A photo of a sticker placed on a flight attendant’s house with her personal details has been circulated on WhatsApp, and a video in which she is identified by her name and falsely called COVID-19 positive has been shared on social media.
“My safety and my image are under attack. People are saying that I’m corona-positive and humiliating me. One can’t live like this. Society will boycott you if they think you are corona-positive,” she said.
HuffPost India reports that the flight attendant is among many victims of public shaming and ostracising occurring in the country as the number of coronavirus cases rises.
— James Martin
Hundreds have died and more than 1,000 have been sickened in Iran by ingesting methanol in the mistaken belief that it protects against the new coronavirus, AP reports.
“Other countries have only one problem, which is the new coronavirus pandemic. But we are fighting on two fronts here,” said Dr. Hossein Hassanian, an adviser to Iran’s Health Ministry. “We have to both cure the people with alcohol poisoning and also fight the coronavirus.”
The Islamic Republic has reported over 32,300 cases and more than 2,300 deaths from the virus.
— Liza Hearon
New York City public health officials said Thursday that nearly half of all coronavirus infections in the city were in residents 44 and younger.
According to data up until 5 p.m., officials said 44% of infections were in the 18-to-44 age bracket, a total of 10,145 cases. And 34% percent were in people ages 45 to 64, with 19% among those 65 and older. The report adds to growing concern that the coronavirus doesn’t primarily affect older people and those with underlying health conditions.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data released last week showed nearly 40% of people sick enough to be hospitalized were ages 20 to 54.
The risk of dying, however, remains significantly higher in older people and those with underlying conditions.
— Nick Visser
For earlier updates on the pandemic, go here.
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