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Coronavirus USA live updates: news, cases, deaths and stimulus checks today

Update:
Oversight and Reform Subcommittee Chairman James E. Clyburn speaks during a House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on the Trump administration's response the the Coronavirus crisis.

Coronavirus USA live updates: Wednesday 2 September

US coronavirus latest: 13:15 PT / 16:15 ET on 2 September  (22:15 CEST )

Latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University.

Worldwide

Cases: 25,842,561
Deaths: 858,552
Recoveries: 17,125,165

US

Cases: 6,094,562
Deaths: 184,914
Recoveries: 2,202,682

Coronavirus-related stories you might be interested in:

US Republicans criticize Pelosi over hair appointment

U.S. Republicans criticized House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday for going to a hair salon in San Francisco in an apparent violation of the city's coronavirus pandemic regulations, but the Democratic leader said she had been told by the salon the appointment was allowed.

Pelosi briefly addressed the issue to reporters in San Francisco, saying, "I take responsibility for falling for a set-up." 

Under strict rules to combat the coronavirus pandemic, hair salons in San Francisco were still prohibited from admitting customers on Monday, when Pelosi had her appointment, although salons elsewhere in the state and across much of the country were already open.

President Donald Trump and other Republicans seized on a brief video of Pelosi's appointment, which first aired on the Fox News channel, to accuse Pelosi, the most senior elected Democrat in Washington, of hypocrisy.

Trump - who took months to embrace mask-wearing as a way to slow the spread of Covid-19 - used the incident to attack Pelosi, saying on Twitter that she is "constantly lecturing" others.

"The Beauty Parlor owner must really dislike Crazy Nancy Pelosi. Turning her in, on tape, is a really big deal," the president wrote. 

Stimulus Checks: what has been agreed and what remains to be resolved for a second payment?

STIMULUS CHECKS

Stimulus Checks: what has been agreed and what remains to be resolved for a second payment?

While Republicans and Democrats remain some way off a deal on a coronavirus relief package, there has been significant progress made of late. Read our latest piece on the negotiations...

Trump administration calls for greater transparency in WHO

“The position of the White House is that the WHO needs to reform and that is starting with demonstrating its independence from the Chinese Communist Party,” explained Nerissa Cook, deputy assistant secretary of state for international organization affairs (via CNBC)

“We are advocating for greater transparency and greater accountability and we want to see speedier and higher quality of communications,” Cook said, adding that the administration wants “to see very strong management and focus on the prevention and detection and response to pandemics.”

Debunking the "conspiracy theory" about the 6% coronavirus death toll 

The coronavirus death toll in the US officially stands at close to 185,000. However, there has been a theory circulating online, and supported by Donald Trump, that only 6% of those deaths were attributed to the virus, while the other 94% were caused by other serious illnesses. (Trump's tweet on the theory was removed by Twitter).

But CNN reporter and self-proclaimed Trump fact-checker, Daniel Dale has followed Dr. Anthony Fauci by futher refuting the so-called conspiracy theory.

"A key thing about the 94% of Covid-19 victims who also have something else listed on the death certificate: that 94% not only includes long-term conditions like obesity, with which they lived before getting Covid and dying, but *things caused by Covid,* like respiratory failure," he tweeted.

"In other words, this conspiracy theory would have you believe that people whose death certificate lists both Covid-19 and respiratory failure did not actually die of Covid-19, since LOOK! SEE! RESPIRATORY FAILURE, even if the respiratory failure was directly caused by Covid-19."

Photo by EFE

In Pictures: New York City Schools Opening Delayed, Outside Classes

Students and parents attend informal and introductory classes at New York City Public School 15 for incoming pre-kindergarten students on the street in front of the school during a registration session in the Red Hook neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, USA, 02 September 2020.

New York City announced a day ealier it was delaying the opening of the city's public school system, the largest In the country, by 10 days as a way to give teachers more time to prepare for remote and in-school class protocols to deal with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic (EFE/EPA/JUSTIN LANE)

White Advisor Dr. Scott Atlas "not qualified" to be on taskforce

In an interview with CNN, Dr. Celine Gounder has stated that the White House should not be listening to Dr. Scott Altas -- who has increasingly had President's Trump ear on coronavirus management while experts such as Dr. Fauci have been cast aside -- as he is not qualified to be on the Coronavirus Taskforce. 

"Dr. Scott Atlas is a neuroradiologist. Does the White House Coronavirus Taskforce need him reading a bunch of brain MRIs read? If not, what's he doing on the taskforce?" -- tweeted Dr. Gounder. See interview below..

	FILE PHOTO: Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, attends a news conference as efforts continue to help slow the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada March 23, 2020. REUTERS/Blair Gable/File Photo

Wear a mask while having sex, Canada's top doctor suggests

Skip kissing and consider wearing a mask when having sex to protect yourself from catching the coronavirus, Canada's chief medical officer said on Wednesday, adding that going solo remains the lowest risk sexual option in a pandemic.

Dr Theresa Tam said in a statement there is little chance of catching Covid-19 from semen or vaginal fluid, but sexual activity with new partners does increase the risk of contracting the virus, particularly if there is close contact like kissing.

"Like other activities during Covid-19 that involve physical closeness, there are some things you can do to minimize the risk of getting infected and spreading the virus," she said.

Skip kissing, avoid face-to-face closeness, wear a mask that covers your mouth and nose, and monitor yourself and your partner for symptoms ahead of any sexual activity, Tam said. "The lowest risk sexual activity during Covid-19 involves yourself alone," she added.

Sexual health is an important part of overall health, Tam said, and by taking precautions, "Canadians can find ways to enjoy physical intimacy while safeguarding the progress we have all made containing COVID-19." 

Canada has reported 129,425 cases of COVID-19 and 9,132 deaths, as of 1 September. New daily cases are far below peak volumes, but there has been a recent uptick, driven by more infections in certain western Canadian provinces. (Reuters)

US CDC reports 184,083 deaths from coronavirus

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Wednesday said the number of deaths due to the new coronavirus had risen by 1,033 to 184,083 and reported 6,047,692 cases, an increase of 43,249 cases from its previous count.

The CDC reported its tally of cases of the respiratory illness known as Covid-19, caused by a new coronavirus, as of 4 p.m. ET on 1 September compared with its previous report a day earlier. The CDC figures do not necessarily reflect cases reported by individual states.

US will not take part in global vaccine initiative

The US Food and Drug Administration will organise meetings with independent groups of experts to review data on coronavirus vaccine candidates and advise the agency, FDA commissioner Stephen Hahn said on Wednesday.

 

Covid-19 cases in US children have increased 17% in two weeks - report

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic up to 27 August, there have been over 476,000 positive cases in children, according to an updated report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association. The report looks at publicly reported data from 49 states, New York City, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam, CNN reports. 

Children represented 9.5% of all cases, and there is an overall rate of 631 cases per 100,000 children in the population. Both of these numbers have increased since the previous report on 20 August, when children represented 9.3% of all cases and the overall rate with 583 cases per 100,000 children in the population.  There were 70,330 new child cases reported during the fortnight after 13 August - a 17% increase. 

Of the nine states that reported testing, children make up between 4% and 13.3% of all tests. Between 2.8% and 17.4% of tested children were positive for Covid-19.  For the 22 states and New York City that reported hospitalizations, children made up 0.6% to 4.1% of total reported hospitalizations. Between 0.3% and 8.5% of all child cases resulted in hospitalization. In the states that reported, 0% to 0.7% of all child cases resulted in death. 

Trump speaks on Pelosi's beauty salon visit

Donald Trump posted a tweet referring to the media reaction to Nancy Pelosi's visit to a beauty salon in San Francisco which had been closed by state order due to the Covid-19 pandelic. Pelosi was also criticised for not wearing a face mask in pictures taken by Fox News. 

"Crazy Nancy Pelosi is being decimated for having a beauty parlor opened, when all others are closed, and for not wearing a Mask - despite constantly lecturing everyone else. We will almost certainly take back the House, and send Nancy packing!

The Beauty Parlor owner must really dislike Crazy Nancy Pelosi. Turning her in, on tape, is a really big deal. She probably treats him like she treats everyone else...And she strongly supported a Kennedy who just lost in, of all places, Massachusetts!"

 

Trump administration targets hospitals for not reporting accurate Covid-19 data

The Trump administration is training its sights on hospitals, charging that many have been contributing uneven data about Covid-19 cases in the federal effort to gauge the pandemic, the Wall Street Journal reports.

In a move expected as early as next week, the administration is planning to publicize the names of hospitals with data missing from the federal pandemic reporting system, according to people familiar with the discussions.

Top Russian official calls out U.S. hypocrisy for considering fast-tracking coronavirus vaccine

Russia has accused the West of hypocrisy amid discussions of fast-tracking the roll-out of potential coronavirus vaccines, Newsweek reports.

Kirill Dmitriev, the head of Russia's sovereign wealth fund, said the organization "notes the desire of the U.S. and British authorities to follow the fast-track registration procedure for coronavirus vaccines that has been applied in the Russian Federation."

Russia approved its coronavirus vaccine in mid-August, prompting concern that it had not passed efficacy and safety tests. Among those to express worry was top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci who said he "seriously doubts" Russia's vaccine is ready to be widely used.

Dmitriev said the West was "shocked by Russia's success and had to go through four stages of accepting the inevitable: denial, anger, depression, and ultimately acceptance".

Martin Luther King III discusses Trump visit to Kenosha

I thought that his visit was strictly a political visit to drum up support for his base. It’s so unfortunate that the leadership to bring people together is not reflected.”

The United Arab Emirates recorded over 500 new COVID-19 infections for the second successive day on Tuesday after a rise in cases in the Middle East financial hub.

Healthcare workers and first responders who are at the highest risk of contracting COVID-19 should be at the front of the line for vaccines when they become available, an independent expert panel tapped by top U.S. health officials said on Tuesday.

Antibody levels against the novel coronavirus rose and then held steady for up to four months in more than 90% of recovered COVID-19 patients in Iceland, according to a study published on Tuesday.

Clyburn

Oversight and Reform Subcommittee Chairman James E. Clyburn speaks during a House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on the administration's response the the Coronavirus crisis, on Capitol Hill, Washington, DC, USA, 01 September 2020. EFE/EPA/Graeme Jennings / POOL

Getting a coronavirus vaccine from manufacturing sites to parts of the developing world supply will be an immense challenge, given the need to store some vials at temperatures as low as minus 80 Celsius (-112 Fahrenheit), Deutsche Post warned on Tuesday.

U.S. employment is projected to increase by 6 million jobs this decade, with the annual growth rate sharply slower than during the economy’s recovery from the Great Recession, according to a government report on Tuesday.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Tuesday he would telephone House Speaker Nancy Pelosi about stalled coronavirus aid negotiations later on Tuesday, once a congressional hearing where he was testifying finished.

Serena

Serena service resumes

One of the overwhelming favourites for the US Open title this year in a field weakened by a raft of Covid-19 related withdrawals among top 10 WTA players, Serena Williams eased into the second round at Flushing Meadows with a straight sets victory (7-5, 6-3) over compatriot Kristie Ahn.  

Brazil cases surge

(Reuters) Brazil reported 42,659 new cases of the novel coronavirus and 1,215 deaths from the disease caused by the virus in the past 24 hours, the health ministry said on Tuesday.

Brazil has registered 3,950,931 cases of the virus since the pandemic began, while the official death toll from Covid-19 has risen to 122,596, according to ministry data, in the world's worst coronavirus outbreak outside the United States.

Vaccine to be in circulation by January - White House

Meanwhile, the White House has announced that it anticipates producing 300 million does of a vaccine that could be ready for an inital roll-out by January 2021. 

Trump administration to shun WHO vaccine effort

The race for an effective vaccine is on but the US has announced its intention to go it alone rather than join the WHO-led global effort to develop a vaccine and ensure equitable global distribution. Observers have called it a disastrous decision that could shape the future course of the pandemic. Epidemiologist & Health Economist Eric Feigl-Ding said the decision would "hurt us in the long run." 

FDA may approve vaccine earlier than expected

CORONAVIRUS

FDA may approve vaccine earlier than expected

FDA chief Stephen Hahn says there will be no bowing to political pressure but the Emergency Use Authorization program could produce a vaccine by November.

US panel says health workers, first responders should be first to get Covid-19 vaccines

(Reuters) A panel of experts set up to advise the United States on how best to allocate Covid-19 vaccines said on Tuesday that high risk workers in healthcare facilities and first responders should get them first as part of a recommended four-phase rollout plan.

The plan was suggested by a special committee of experts from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and the National Academy of Medicine, an independent advisory body. The directors of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health charged the panel with devising the plan in late June.

Donald Trump in Kenosha

The US president visited Kenosha, Wisconsin, to meet community leaders and speak to law enforcement officials in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake on 23 August. Blake, 29, was hit four times in the back from seven shots fired as he attempted to enter the driver's side door of his car, sparking protests across the city. 

White House slams WHO over criticism of push for Covid-19 vaccine

(Reuters) The White House on Tuesday pushed back on concerns expressed by the World Health Organization after a US health official said a coronavirus vaccine might be approved without completing full trials.

"The United States will continue to engage our international partners to ensure we defeat this virus, but we will not be constrained by multilateral organizations influenced by the corrupt World Health Organization and China," White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement.

"This President will spare no expense to ensure that any new vaccine maintains our own FDA's gold standard for safety and efficacy, is thoroughly tested, and saves lives," he said.

Hello and welcome

We begin our new round of US coronavirus coverage on Wednesday 2 September, as the total caseload in the country stands at 6,062,162, while deaths have surpassed 184,270 as of 00:00 CEST.

We'll be bringing you all the lastest US-focued news and reaction as it breaks throughout the day. 

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