Coronavirus USA news summary: cases and deaths - 13 September

Coronavirus live: USA: 13 September

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WHO reports record one-day increase in global coronavirus cases, up over 307,000

The World Health Organization reported a record one-day increase in global coronavirus cases on Sunday, with the total rising by 307,930 in 24 hours.

The biggest increases were from India, the United States and Brazil, according to the agency's website. Deaths rose by 5,537 to a total of 917,417. (Reuters)

Michael Bloomberg to spend $100 million in Florida to help elect Joe Biden

(Reuters) Billionaire Michael Bloomberg, who spent $1 billion on his 2020 Democratic presidential bid before dropping out, plans to inject at least $100 million to help Democrat Joe Biden's effort against Republican President Donald Trump in the important swing state of Florida.

The decision comes as Trump's initial financial supremacy over former Vice President Biden earlier this year has largely evaporated after high spending from the campaign and a surge in fundraising by Democrats.

Florida is one of the biggest prizes on Election Day, and it is also the most expensive of the expected battlegrounds in which to campaign. But polls there show a race that is effectively tied.

The Republican president, who trails Biden in national opinion polls before the Nov. 3 election, told reporters last week that he would spend his own money if needed.

"I thought Mini Mike was through with Democrat politics," Trump said on Twitter in reaction to the news. "Save NYC instead."

Trump signs new executive order to lower drug prices

President Donald Trump said on Sunday he had signed a new executive order aimed at lowering drug prices in the United States by linking them to those of other nations.

"My Most Favored Nation order will ensure that our Country gets the same low price Big Pharma gives to other countries. The days of global freeriding at America’s expense are over," Trump said in a Twitter post, adding: "Also just ended all rebates to middlemen, further reducing prices."


No fans, mo Mo

The Baltimore Ravens filled a stand with 575 cutouts of superfan Mo Gamba before their game against the Cleveland Browns at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland on Sunday. Fans were not permitted to attend the game due to the coronavirus pandemic. Scott Taetsch/Getty Images/AFP

Climate change crisis blamed for US wild fires

"This is America fast forward. California, the West Coast...are experiencing what people predicted would happen in 2040, 2050 - but we're experiencing it today," says California Governor Gavin Newsom

The Russian Health Ministry confirmed the first deliveries of Sputnik V have been sent out to test logistical issues ahead of a planned mass vaccination at the end of November or the beginning of December. 

US colleges causing concern

In the past week, a New York Times survey found American colleges and universities recorded more than 36,000 additional coronavirus cases. The rising number underscores an emerging reality: College campuses have become hot spots for virus transmission.


Oregon blazes a "once-in-a-generation event"

(Reuters) Crews were to resume searching for the dead on Sunday among blackened ruins left by massive wildfires raging in three western US states, where millions of acres have burned in weeks and "mass fatality" incidents are feared in Oregon.

A blitz of wildfires across Oregon, California and Washington has destroyed thousands of homes and a half dozen small towns this summer, scorching a landscape the size of New Jersey and killing more than two dozen people since early August.

After four days of brutally hot, windy weather, the weekend brought calmer winds blowing inland from the Pacific Ocean, and cooler, moister conditions that helped crews make headway against blazes that had burned unchecked earlier in the week.

Still, emergency officials worried that the shifting weather might not bring much relief to southern Oregon, where an apocalyptic scene of charred residential subdivisions and trailer parks stretched for miles along Highway 99 south of Medford through the neighboring communities of Phoenix and Talent.

"We're concerned that the incoming front is not going to provide a lot of rain here in the Medford region and it's going to bring increased winds," Bureau of Land Management spokesman Kyle Sullivan told Reuters in a telephone interview on Sunday.

Oregon Governor Kate Brown called the perilous blazes a "once-in-a-generation event," and the director of Oregon's office of emergency management, Andrew Phelps, said authorities were bracing for the possibility of "mass fatality" incidents. 

(Photo by Robyn Beck / AFP)


Trump suggests he will seek third term as president

(Reuters) Republican President Donald Trump rallied his backers in Nevada on Saturday in a bid to drum up support in a state where polls show his Democratic rival Joe Biden is ahead.

Going through a list of grievances about Democrats, the media, and mail-in voting, Trump spoke to a crowd of thousands at an airport outside of Reno where people stood close to one another and, in many cases, did not wear masks despite the coronavirus pandemic.

The president mused about staying in office 12 years, despite constitutional limits that prohibit US presidents from serving more than two, four-year terms.

"We are going to win four more years in the White House and then after that we’ll negotiate, right, because we’re probably, based on the way we were treated, we’re probably entitled to another four after that," he said.

Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Li-Meng Yan to "provide proof" Covid-19 is a lab-based virus

Li-Meng Yan, who is in hiding in the US, has said she will soon provide evidence of her claims that the coronavirus was developed in a Chinese lab.

Full story:

US cases going down, but will fall and winter bring resurgence?

Noting that coronavirus cases in the US are dropping, former Food and Drug Administration commissioner Dr Scott Gottlieb has warned that there could be a renewed uptick in infections during fall and winter - a statement that is in line with recent remarks by Dr Anthony Fauci, the country's top infectious disease expert.

"Overall U.S. Covid cases and hospitalizations continue to fall, driven by sharp declines in the sunbelt states", Dr Gottlieb tweeted on Sunday. "Key question: Is this the nadir before we see a fall and winter resurgence of a pathogen that typically spreads in the winter; or can we hopefully hold onto these gains".

Speaking during a panel discussion with Havard Medical School this week, Dr Fauci told Americans: "We need to hunker down and get through this fall and winter, because it’s not going to be easy."

Hospital security guard inspires healthcare workers' 'cheer squad'

A security guard at a hospital in Downey, California, has come to the attention of the US media for his attempts to raise the spirits of medical workers fighting the spread of the coronavirus.

According to CNN, Robert Johnson, 58, has been cheering on healthcare staff at Kaiser Permanente Downey Medical Center after the end of their 12-hour night shift, inspiring the workers to form what they call a ‘cheer squad’.

"Sometimes we have up to, like, 10 to sometimes 18 nurses walk out and we just kind of wait for each other," said Kelly Wilson, a nurse at the hospital.

Johnson told CNN: "These are individuals who are taking time away from their life, coming here, putting a majority of their time to work here, and I show a lot of appreciation for that. That's why I try to bring out a smile. Look what you have done!"

McConnell pessimistic over relief bill

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell does not share House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s optimism over a deal being struck for a coronavirus aid package.

Full story:

Dr. Fauci: Covid-19 figures are disturbing

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, Dr. Anthony Fauci said he disagrees with president Trump's view that the US has "turned the corner" in the coronavirus crisis.

Fauci says the statistics are worrying - especially with the cooler weather expected. "I'm sorry but I have to disagree with that because if you look at the statistics, they are disturbing. We are plateauing at around 40,000 cases a day. And the deaths are around a 1,000. As we turn the corner after the Labor Day week and I am hoping that we do not see a surge in cases like we saw following the 4th of July and Memorial Day," he told MNSBC

"When you have a baseline of infections, of 40,000 per day and you have threats of increased test positivity in certain regions of the country - such as Dakotas, Montana and places like that, what we don't want to see is going into the fall season, when people will be spending more time indoors - and that's not good for a respiratory-borne virus. You don't want to start off with a baseline that is already so high, so, the things that we have all been talking about, I have been stressing over the past month is that we have to try as best as possible to get that level down so you won't have a situation going into a more precarious situation, like the fall and the winter, you won't have a situation where you really are at a disadvantage right from the beginning

Air industry innovation during the Covid-19 pandemic

Delta Airlines is working hard to convince passengers that it's safe to fly during the coronavirus pandemic. It started off with the plane itself, by blocking middle seats and spraying disinfectant on a regular basis. Last week it announced two new safety and sanitisation initiatives at airports. Delta said it would replace the air filtering systems on the jet bridges that passengers use to walk from the gate onto their planes, and announced new anti-microbial bins at security checkpoints at five of its hubs.

Almost all aircraft are outfitted with HEPA filters, which are highly effective at removing the SARS-CoV-2 virus and other microbes from the air. But air is not filtered when a plane is parked on stand. parked planes, air typically isn't filtered. Delta said that it would add MERV-14 filters to those air systems at 31 airports by mid-September, and at more airports in the coming months.

Pharmaceutical advances in the fight against Covid-19

Remdesivir, dexamethasone, favipiravir, blood plasma therapy, antibody therapy... numerous treatments have been tried and tested in the fight to control, cure and possibly prevent Covid-19 infection. More than 300 vaccine projects have been set up around the world with at least eight candidates at the Phase III trial stage. Bloomberg takes a look at how far science and medicine have reached in the battle against coronavirus.

Oral health suffering during Covid-19 crisis

Dentists say they are seeing evidence our oral health is suffering as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Some clinics were closed during the pandemic and the ones which remained open only treated emergency cases. Dentists say that their clinics are safe to visit although they now treat fewer patients during to extended time cleaning and sanitising equipment.

Over 50% of residents in big US cities are struggling financially

More than half of families in the United States' largest cities are struggling to pay their credit card bills and access medical care, CBS reports.

According a survey conducted last month by Harvard University, NPR and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, more than half of residents in Chicago (50%), Houston (63%), Los Angeles (56%) and New York (53%) say they have lost their jobs during the coronavirus pandemic, which in turn has put a strain on their budget. The hardest hit are those where the main breadwinner has been furloughed, laid off or had their work hours reduced, the survey shows.

Pensioner attacked after asking man to follow Covid-19 safety rules

A 70-year-old man was punched, spat on and dragged by his hair in Orlando, Florida after asking a maskless customer to social distance and put on a face mask, CNN reports.

The incident took place at a Citgo gas station in Winter Park. Police arrested 24-year-old Rovester Ingram and charged him with aggravated battery on a person older than 65, as well as kidnapping.

Los Angeles County Sheriffs shot in unprovoked attack

Two Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputies were shot while in the city of Compton on Saturday night,  the department confirmed on Twitter.

"One male deputy and one female deputy were ambushed as they sat in their patrol vehicle. "Both sustained multiple gunshot wounds and are in critical condition. They are both currently undergoing surgery. The suspect is still at large."

President Donald Trump reacted to the video which showed a lone gunman walk up to a sheriif's car and fire shots through the window before running off.

US lawmakers quiz Disney CEO over Xinjiang connection to 'Mulan'

A group of bipartisan US lawmakers urged Walt Disney Co CEO Bob Chapek to explain the company's connection with "security and propaganda" authorities of China's Xinjiang region during the production of live-action war epic "Mulan". 

Disney's $200 million live-action remake of its animated classic about a female warrior in ancient China has run into controversy for being partly filmed in the Xinjiang region, where China's clampdown on ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims has been criticized by some governments, including the United States, and human rights groups.

"Disney's apparent cooperation with officials of the People's Republic of China (PRC) who are most responsible for committing atrocities - or for covering up those crimes - is  profoundly disturbing," the Republican senators and representatives wrote in Friday's letter.

Trump officials influenced CDC reports on Covid-19

Trump administration officials interfered with and changed the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s weekly scientific reports on Covid-19.

Trump tweets

As he makes for Nevada, the US President generated his usual number of tweets on a wide range of topics with this picture from Idaho being a standout

Trump's Covid measures see 8,800 unaccompanied children deported from US

Border Patrol Deputy Chief Raul Ortiz said more than eight thousand unaccompanied children were deported at the United States border due to Covid-19 rules.

US Open 2020: Osaka champion as battling Azarenka misses out

Naomi Osaka showed exceptional fight to triumph at the US Open again, two years after her first victory was overshadowed.

Fauci predicts complicated winter

Dr. Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases stated “We need to hunker down and get through this fall and winter, because it’s not going to be easy,” during a panel of doctors from Harvard Medical School.


Oregon's wildfires force mass evacuations, but shifting weather offers some hope

Deadly wildfires raging across Oregon kept half a million people under evacuation alert on Saturday even as weary firefighters took advantage of improved weather to go on the offensive against the blazes.

The fires have destroyed thousands of homes in days, making Oregon the latest epicenter in a larger summer outbreak of fires sweeping the western United States, collectively scorching a landscape the size of New Jersey and killing at least 25 people.

At least five people died in Oregon this week. Governor Kate Brown has warned the death toll could grow far higher and said on Friday that dozens of people had been reported missing in three counties.

New possible date to approve the second relief package

While Republicans already resumed work in Congress, the House is expected to return to work next week and start discussing the fifth stimulus relief package amid the pandemic.


Astrazeneca says trials of Covid vaccine resuming: updated

British clinical trials for the AstraZeneca and Oxford University coronavirus vaccine have resumed following confirmation by the Medicines Health Regulatory Authority (MHRA) that it was safe to do so, the company said on Saturday.

The late-stage trials of the experimental vaccine, one of the most advanced in development, were suspended this week after an illness in a study subject in Britain.

"The standard review process triggered a voluntary pause to vaccination across all global trials to allow review of safety data by independent committees, and international regulators,"

AstraZeneca said. "The UK committee has concluded its investigations and recommended to the MHRA that trials in the UK are safe to resume."


Trump heads to Nevada on campaign trip to woo supporters

Republican President Donald Trump on Saturday headed to Nevada, trying to drum up more support in a state where polls show Democratic rival Joe Biden leading, and to raise money for a campaign that is facing a possible cash crunch.

Trump is trailing Biden, a former vice president, in national polls and in Nevada, which the former real estate developer and reality television star lost narrowly to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Trump plans to attend campaign events in Nevada and Arizona during a three-day Western swing that will also include a stop in California on Monday to be briefed about devastating fires that are ravaging the West Coast.

Tropical storm nineteen could reach hurricane strength by Monday warn NHC

A weather disturbance off the tip of Florida could strengthen into a hurricane by Monday, bringing wind, heavy seas and flash flooding to the U.S. Gulf Coast, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

Coronavirus live US updates: welcome

Hello and welcome to our live, United States-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which as of 19:00 ET on Saturday had registered nearly 28.5 million cases and just over 917,000 deaths worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University.

In the US, the globe's worst-hit country, there have been almost 6.5 million cases and more than 193,000 deaths.