Coronavirus US summary of news for 1 June

Coronavirus US live updates: cases, deaths and stimulus checks today

Coronavirus live USA: latest Covid-19 news - Monday 1 June

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US coronavirus latest: 14:00 PST / 17:00 EST Monday 1 June (23:00 CEST)

According to the latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University, 6,229,408 cases have been detected worldwide, with 373,973 deaths and 2,672,161 people now recovered.

In the USA, there have been 1,799,747 confirmed cases and 104,702 deaths with 444,758 people recovering from the virus.

Mental health experts expecting a post-Covid-19 "mental health tsunami"

Feeling of isolation, despair —suicides, drug abuse, domestic violence and depression—will unfold over the next few months and could stretch on for years as a result of the coronavirus crisis, mental health experts predict.

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Senate leader hopes for quick passage of coronavirus small business bill

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that he hopes the Senate will soon pass legislation already passed by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives easing terms of the coronavirus small-business loan program. "I hope and anticipate the Senate will soon take up and pass legislation that just passed the House, by an overwhelming vote of 417 to one, to further strengthen the Paycheck Protection Program so it continues working for small businesses that need our help," McConnell, a Republican, said.

Under the House-passed bill, businesses receiving forgivable loans under this new program would have 24 weeks, instead of the current eight weeks, to utilize the loans intended to help keep businesses operating and retain employees.

The legislation also contains other changes to provide more flexibility to the program as small businesses try to reopen following months of closures. Restaurants and hotels are among the largest beneficiaries of the Paycheck Protection Program created in late March.

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WHO and other experts say there is no evidence that Covid-19 is weakening

World Health Organization experts and a range of other scientists warn that there is no evidence to support an assertion by a high profile Italian doctor that the coronavirus causing the Covid-19 pandemic has been losing potency.

On Sunday, Professor Alberto Zangrillo, head of intensive care at Italy's San Raffaele Hospital in Lombardy told state television that the new coronavirus "clinically no longer exists". But WHO epidemiologist Maria Van Kerkhove, as well as several other experts on viruses and infectious diseases, said Zangrillo's comments were not supported by scientific evidence.

There is no data to show the new coronavirus is changing significantly, either in its form of transmission or in the severity of the disease it causes, they said. "In terms of transmission, that has not changed, in terms of severity, that has not changed," Van Kerkhove told reporters.

Oscar MacLean, an expert at the University of Glasgow's Centre for Virus Research, said suggestions that the virus was weakening were 'not supported by anything in the scientific literature and also seem fairly implausible on genetic grounds.'

WHO chief bids to save ties with US, praises country's "generous" contribution

The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday praised the United States' "immense" and "generous" contribution to global health in a push to salvage relations after President Donald Trump said he was severing ties with the UN agency.

Accusing it of pandering to China and overlooking an initially secretive response to the Covid-19 outbreak, Trump said on Friday he was ending Washington's relationship with the WHO.

But WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told an online media briefing he hoped his organisation could continue its longstanding collaboration with the United States.

"The United States' contribution and generosity towards global health over many decades has been immense, and it has made a great difference in public health all around the world," he said. (Reuters)

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:

George Floyd fallout

If you are looking for information in the US on the situation regarding the George Floyd protests, we have a separate feed.

Vaccine news: remdesivir

Gilead Sciences Inc said on Monday that results from a study showed its antiviral drug remdesivir demonstrated significantly greater clinical improvement in patients with moderate Covid-19.

Remdesivir is being closely watched after the US Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorisation on 1 May, citing results from another study run by the National Institutes of Health that showed the drug reduced hospitalization stays by 31%, or about four days, compared to a placebo.

The new results announced by Gilead are from a study designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of 5- and 10-day treatment with remdesivir in addition to standard of care for patients with moderate Covid-19, compared with standard care alone. (Reuters)

Assange locked down

The pandemic is part of the reason that Julian Assange has not yet been extradited to the US.

Disclaimers and waivers

As US businesses reopen after weeks of pandemic lockdowns, many have been posting coronavirus disclaimers or requiring employees and patrons to sign waivers before entering. From hair salons and recreation centres to stock exchanges and wedding photographers, the notices have sprung up across the country, asking guests to acknowledge they might contract a disease that has so far killed over 100,000 Americans.

Companies are using signs, forms and website postings as a shield against lawsuits, but the measures do not prevent people from seeking damages due to negligence, the same way someone might sue after falling on a slippery floor or getting sick from walls covered in lead paint, experts said.

Wall Street and Fed fly blind as coronavirus upends annual stress tests

US financial regulators, banks and their investors will get their first glimpse into the health of the nation's banking system as it confronts soaring corporate and consumer defaults in the economic crisis sparked by the novel coronavirus, reports Reuters. And no-one, including the US Federal Reserve which sets the annual bank 'stress test' exams, has a clue what to expect.

“That is the $100,000 question. Actually, it’s much bigger than that and I am sure the Fed is working hard to get it right. We’re curious, and we don’t have clarity,' said Kevin Fromer, CEO of the Financial Services Forum, which represents the biggest banks in the U.S.

That could mean banks may be on the hook for billions more in capital than they had anticipated, which could ultimately force them to slash dividends, slim down their balance sheets or reduce lending.

Since the 2009 financial crisis, the Fed has tested annually a snapshot of big bank balance sheets against an extreme hypothetical economic shock. The results ultimately dictate how much capital banks can dish out to shareholders.

New Jersey support for restart

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy is under increasing partisan pressure to speed up the pace of reopening the state’s economy as the number of daily Covid-19 deaths there continues to shrink.

China report highest number of new cases in nearly 3 weeks

President Trump has been highly vocal over the figures coming out of China. Today they have reported the highest daily increase in coronavirus cases in nearly three weeks, with 16 new infections discovered on 31 May, as the number of so-called imported cases jumped in southwestern Sichuan province.

The National Health Commission (NHC) said in a statement on Monday that all the new cases involved travellers from overseas, 11 of which were reported in Sichuan. China reported two confirmed cases on 29 May, both of which were imported. Chinese state television reported that the Sichuan cases came on a flight from Egypt, and another six asymptomatic cases were found on the same flight. China does not count asymptomatic cases as confirmed Covid-19 infections.

The total number of confirmed cases in mainland China now stands at 83,017, while the death toll remains at 4,634.

Getting rich off pandemic

Coronavirus has added another $6bn to the fortune of Qin Yinglin.

Reopening the economy

Watch an explanation of why some are concerned about the second wave.

Stay safe

As usual a lot of the scams offer the promise of money. Fake refunds, texts about stimulus checks... think before clicking on anything and never give your credit card details to someone who phoned you unexpectedly. A classic indication something is a scam is if it's urgent - the scammer doesn't want you to have time to think and realise there's something fishy going on.

Good news in England

In case you missed this story...

US confirms it has sent hydroxychloroquine to Brazil

The US, led by President Donald Trump, continues to tout the benefits of anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine in the war against Covid-19, despite studies showing it is not effective and the WHO halting investigations into it due to safety concerns.

The United States has now confirmed it has sent 2 million doses of hydroxychloroquine to Brazil, where it will be used as a "prophylactic to help defend Brazil’s nurses, doctors, and healthcare professionals against the virus. It will also be used as a therapeutic to treat Brazilians who become infected," according to a joint statement from the two countries. 

The American FDA does not allow the the use of the drug for the prevention of Covid-19, and The American Medical Association, American Pharmacists Association and American Society of Health-System Pharmacists have issued a joint statement opposing the use of hydroxychloroquine for the prevention of Covid-19.

The drug has number of potentially serious side-effects.

Trump, who has promoted the drug ceaselessly, said he had taken it to prevent infection with the coronavirus. 
 

Fear over protests causing spike in coronavirus cases

Despite many protesters wearing masks it's expected case numbers will rise after this weekend's demonstrations.

Coronavirus deaths continue to fall in New York state

56 people died in New York State yesterday said Governor Cuomo, down from 67 on Friday. Total hospitalisations, new hospitalisations and intubations all also fell. "All good news", said Cuomo. In total 29,784 people in New York state have died from Covid-19. 

Latest US coronavirus figures

In total 1,786,030 people have been confirmed to have the coronavirus in the United States, of those 104,232 have died, while 444,758 have recovered, leaving over a million still with the active disease.

Live updates of the Covid-19 situation

Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the coronavirus situation for Sunday 31 May and Monday 1 June. We'll keep you up to date with the latest news as it breaks. 

You can also follow rolling news of the protests over the death of George Floyd.

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