By Ciara Linnane, MarketWatch
The U.S. counted yet another a daily record number of COVID-19 cases on Saturday, while the number of cases globally climbed above 14 million and some countries resumed restrictions on movement to contain the pandemic.
The U.S. counted more than 76,000 cases overnight to set a new world record for most in a single day.
Florida, the new U.S. hot spot, added another 11,000 new cases overnight, and now has 327,233 with 4,804 deaths, or 387 a week per 100,000, according to a New York Times tracker. Miami-Dade Country, the state’s epicenter, has 77,866 cases, 2,866 deaths and a mortality rate of 719 per 100,000 people on a weekly basis.
Texas added more than 10,000 new cases for a fourth straight day. In Georgia, Gov. Brian Kemp sued Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and the city council to block the city from enforcing its mandate to wear a mask in public and other rules related to the pandemic, the Associated Press reported.
Kemp is out of step with other states that are struggling with rising cases and are moving to mandating face masks. The latest to take the step include Colorado and Arkansas. Companies, including Walmart, Kroger Co., Target Co. and Best Buy have announced new policies that oblige shoppers to wear face masks, which public health experts say is a vital step in stopping the spread of the virus, along with regular hand washing and social distancing.
A new Washington Post-ABC Poll found most Americans are unhappy with President Donald Trump’s handling of the pandemic and their attitude is hardening as cases climb across the country. A full 66% of those polled said they disapprove of his management of the outbreak, up from 53% in May and 45% in March.
More than half of those polled, or 52%, said they disapprove “strongly,” about double the number counted in March.
Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel of the University of Pennsylvania, an oncologist, bioethicist and senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, said the U.S. has squandered the last four months, with the possible exceptions of finding dexamethasone works and that Gilead Science Holdings Inc.’ /zigman2/quotes/210293917/composite GILD -0.32% remdesivir can shorten hospital-stay durations.
In an interview with MSNBC, Emanuel said he does not expect the U.S. to be back to normal until November of 2021, “in an optimistic scenario.”
Emanuel is one of the signatories of an open letter to America’s leaders saying it’s time to shut down, start over and do it right this time. The letter was also signed by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s William Hanage, Ph.D., Northwestern University’s Seth Trueger, MD, MPH and Yale School of Medicine’s Reshma Ramachandran, MD, MPP.
“Our decision makers need to hit the reset button,” said Matt Wellington, U.S. PIRG’s (Public Interest Research Groups) Public Health Campaigns Director. “Continuing on the path we’re on now will result in widespread suffering and death. And for what? Health experts laid out criteria for how to reopen safely. It’s time to listen to them.”
U.S. PIRG is planning to garner more signatures in the coming week before delivering the letter to a set of governors, leadership in Congress and the Trump administration.
A document prepared for the White House Task Force created to manage the crisis that was obtained by the nonprofit Center for Public Integrity is recommending that 18 states with rising cases roll back their reopening measures. The states have been determined to be in a red zone, defined as “those core-based statistical areas (CBSAs) and counties that during the last week reported both new cases above 100 per 100,000 population, and a diagnostic test positivity result above 10%.”
The states referred to are Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah.
The document does not match the rhetoric from the White House, with Trump mostly focused on pushing for schools to reopen in the fall, against the advice of his own health experts.
Brazil’s case tally continued its rise above 2 million, while India climbed to 1.04 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University. In Spain, an early hot spot in the pandemic, residents of Barcelona were being asked to stay at home and avoid gathering after a rise in new cases.
Israel reimposed lockdown measures and ordered shops, hairdressers and gyms to close, as the Guardian reported. Hong Kong recorded a record of 63 new cases, Bloomberg reported, and the government moved ahead with shutdowns of bars and beaches.
There are now 14.1 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 world-wide and at least 597,361 people have died, according to the Johns Hopkins data. At least 7.9 million people have recovered.
The U.S. accounts for about a quarter of the case tally at 3.65 million and has the highest death toll of 139,302. Brazil is second with 2.05 million cases and 77,851 deaths.
India is third measured by cases at 1.03 million, followed by Russia with 764,215 and Peru with 345,537. The U.K. has 45,318 fatalities, the highest in Europe and third highest in the world. China, where the illness was first reported late last year, has 85,314 cases and 4,644 fatalities.
South Korea’s Key Weapon to Stop the Pandemic? Smartphones
South Korea reported one of the first major coronavirus outbreaks outside China, yet has kept infections low compared to the U.S. WSJ’s Dasl Yoon shows how smartphones have become one of the country’s most effective weapons against the pandemic. Photo: Denis Bosnic for The Wall Street Journal
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The National Governors Association is asking the Trump administration to delay a rapidly implemented rule that changes how hospitals report COVID-19 data to the federal government for 30 days, MarketWatch’s Jaimy Lee reported.