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Coronavirus live USA: total cases, deaths and latest, breaking news

Coronavirus USA live: latest Covid-19 news - 17 April

We've closed this USA Covid-19 live feed down but you can keep up to date with the latest information and news relating to the pandemic here.

What Florida beaches have reopened?

A decision was taken on Friday to open a small selection of Florida's beaches in the north of the state again but certain restrictions still remain in place.

US professional sports to initially return without fans claims Trump

The US president outlined the plan for professional sport leagues to return during the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S.

White House statement

US President Donald Trump has announced the "next front in our war" against Covid-19

"America wants to be open and Americans want to be open"

Donald Trump's three-phase plan to restart the economy and lift some lockdown restrictions has been issued but the US president has left the reopening of states down to individual governors. 

Watching sport in the time of Covid-19

With live sport somewhat hard to come by during the coronavirus pandemic, AS' honorary president Alfredo Relaño has discussed his experiences watching the many reruns of classic matches and events being shown on TV at the moment:

"Very little was done"

Speaking recently, Microsoft founder Bill Gates explained that the world could have got itself ready for a global pandemic, but failed to do so.

Full video:

How H1N1 cases and deaths compare to Covid-19

A decade ago, the H1N1 virus infected an estimated 24% of the global population during a pandemic that lasted 19 months. So how much deadlier is Covid-19?

Full story:

Did stray dogs cause the spread of the virus?

A new study published in Molecular Biology Evolution suggests a dog might have eaten bat meat contaminated with Covid-19 and passed it on to humans.

Full story: 

Global markets up as Trump lays out plans to reopen US economy

World stock markets made a super-charged sprint towards an 11% weekly gain on Friday - their second best of all time - after US President Donald Trump laid out plans to gradually reopen the coronavirus-hit American economy following similar moves elsewhere.

Additional reports that patients with severe Covid-19 symptoms had responded positively to a drug made by US company Gilead Sciences had helped Tokyo and Seoul both surge 3% as Asia took a widely-expected slump in Chinese GDP data in its stride.

Europe's main markets and Wall Street futures made 3% gains in early European trading too, putting the pan-regional STOXX 600 up more than 7% for the week and MSCI's 49-country world index up 10.5% already.

"The market continues to look through terrible data... on anticipation of economies reopening," said Steen Jakobsen, Chief Investment Officer at Saxo Bank. "And hopes that a new drug treatment will help lift longer term uncertainty about the Covid-19 pandemic."

(Text: Reuters)

China denies Covid-19 cover-up

China has refuted cover-up claims over its coronavirus figures after Wuhan, the city where the Covid-19 pandemic began, suddenly increased its death toll by 50% to 3,869 on Friday (see post below).

There has never been any concealment, and we'll never allow any concealment,” foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said.

Wuhan ups Covid-19 death toll by 50%

The Chinese city of Wuhan hiked its death toll from the novel coronavirus by 50% on Friday, bringing the total to 3,869, state-run TV reported, confirming residents' worst fears amid rising international doubts about Beijing's handling of the outbreak.

The central city where the virus first appeared in humans late last year added another 1,290 victims on top of the 2,579 previously counted as of Thursday, reflecting incorrect reporting, delays and omissions, CCTV reported.

The revisions follow widespread speculation that Wuhan's death toll was significantly higher than reported, rumours fuelled by images of long queues of family members waiting to collect ashes of victims and reports of thousands of empty urns stacked at a single funeral home.

"In the early stage, due to limited hospital capacity and the shortage of medical staff, a few medical institutions failed to connect with local disease control and prevention systems in a timely manner, which resulted in delayed reporting of confirmed cases and some failures to count patients accurately," state broadcaster CGTN quoted an unidentified Wuhan official as saying.

Suspicion that China has not been transparent about the outbreak has risen in recent days, with US President Donald Trump on Wednesday expressing scepticism about the country's previously declared death toll of about 3,000.

Do you really believe those numbers in this vast country called China, and that they have a certain number of cases and a certain number of deaths; does anybody really believe that?” he said.

(Text: Reuters)

Who is Robert Kraft, the only man allowed to run at Miami Beach?

A tradition that started nearly half a century ago could not be halted with a coronavirus lockdown, although the sand is less touched than usual.

Full story:

How to make, where to buy cloth mask as NY issues face-covering order

The governor of New York State, Andrew Cuomo, has announced that all people must cover their faces in public if unable to maintain social distancing. The order comes in at 20:00 EDT on Friday.

Here are some tips on making or buying a cloth mask:

Cathay Pacific lays off hundreds of US cabin crew

Hong Kong-based Pacific Airways has announced the lay off of hundreds of cabin crew in the United States after plummetting demand due to the coronavirus crisis. 

“As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic which has virtually halted global travel, Cathay Pacific has made the difficult decision to close its US cabin crew bases,” the company said in a statement.

Astronauts return from ISS to very different planet Earth

Three astronauts have returned to a home planet where things are very different to the day they left…

NASA's Jessica Meir and Andrew Morgan landed in Kazakhstan on Friday, together with Soyuz commander Oleg Skripochka of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, after spending over 200 days at the International Space Station.

Morgan’s 272-day flight began on 20 July 2019, while Meir and Skripochka spent 205 days in space after lifting off on 25 September.

70 coronavirus vaccines in development: 18 in US

The World Health Organization says 70 vaccines against the coronavirus are currently in the works, with three now being tested on humans. The United States is by far the most active country in these efforts, with no fewer than 18 research projects underway.

Full story:

Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic

All the information you need to understand the coronavirus and ways to stay safe during the Covid-19 pandemic:

Trump has told governors to 'call their own shots' regarding the re-opening of their various states.

Foreign state hackers target U.S. coronavirus treatment research

A senior FBI cybersecurity official said on Thursday that foreign government hackers have broken into institutions conducting research into treatments for COVID-19, the sometimes fatal respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus.

Federal Bureau of Investigation Deputy Assistant Director Tonya Ugoretz told participants in an online panel discussion hosted by the Aspen Institute that the bureau had seen state-backed hackers poking around the U.S. healthcare sector as well.

"We certainly have seen reconnaissance activity, and some intrusions, into some of those institutions, especially those that have publicly identified themselves as working on COVID-related research," she said.

Trump also says 29 states could open 'relatively soon'.

Which US states have extended lockdown dates?

After the District of Columbia and California confirmed lockdown extensions through to 15 May, this evening seven states from the Northwest of the country confirmed that they would also maintain their period of lockdown through to mid May.

Andrew Cuomo (Governor of the state) has extended the New York state shutdown to 15 May. He said the unknown tally of infections is what is stopping him from reopening the economy because if people who don't know they are infected return to work, they risk infecting countless others and wiping out all the progress that has been made. 

Donald Trump says governors can decide when to open up again

“We are not opening all at once, but one careful step at a time,” Trump said. “Some states will be able to open up sooner than others. Some states are not in the kind of trouble that others are in. Now that we have passed the peak in new cases, we are starting our life again. We are starting rejuvenation of our economy again in a safe and structured and very responsible fashion.“

“Every state is very different,” he continued. “They are all beautiful. We love them all but they are very, very different. If they need to remain closed, we will allow them to do that. And if they believe it's time to reopen, we will provide them the freedom and guidance to accomplish that task and very, very quickly, depending on what they want to do.“

US unemployment figures: latest jobless claims

The economic impact that the United States has suffered with the ongoing pandemic has resulted in 22 million American citizens file for unemployment benefits over the space of just four weeks.

Backing Trump, U.S. Republicans call for WHO chief to resign

Republican U.S. lawmakers echoed President Donald Trump's criticism of the World Health Organization on Thursday, with some suggesting he withhold aid until the U.N. agency's director general resigns while others called for an international investigation of its handling of the coronavirus. Trump called WHO very 'China-centric' during his press conference yesterday. 

Coronavirus vaccines

70 coronavirus vaccines in development, two in Spain

The World Health Organization says 70 vaccines against the coronavirus are currently in the works, with three now being tested on humans.

Several countries have announced stimulus packages

The coronavirus has caused countries to close down, business to close their doors and employees away from their offices and places of work. The global economy has taken a battering too with the sudden halt as oil prices have plummeted due to lack of demand. Workers have been laid off in various countries at a staggering rate and the governments in those countries are trying to respond with packages to stimulate the economy until life returns to normal. Here is a list of some of the world's largest nations and their plans to keep the economy and their citizens afloat in these unpredictable times.

Hello and welcome to our live blog with all the latest news on the developing coronavirus situation in the USA and around the world.

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