Coronavirus USA: news summary for Tuesday 13 October
US coronavirus / Trump updates: live
Trump, coronavirus latest: headlines
- First US covid-19 reinfection case reported in Nevada
- Fauci says Trump campaign took his words out of context in new ad, and never gave campaign consent to use clip
- Donald Trump tests negative for coronavirus on consecutive days
US Covid-19 latest: 14:00 PT / 17:00 ET on Tuesday 13 October (23:00 CEST)
Latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University.
Related coronavirus articles that may be of interest:
Global economy's recovery hinges on stimulus and Covid-19 battle
Global finance leaders say that the world economy had escaped a coronavirus-triggered collapse so far, but warned that failure to conquer the pandemic, maintain stimulus and tackle mounting debt among poor nations could crush a fragile recovery. At the start of the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, the IMF issued slightly improved growth forecasts spurred by unexpectedly stronger rebounds from coronavirus lockdowns in the wealthiest countries and China.
The IMF said it now expected global gross domestic product to shrink 4.4% in 2020, compared to the 5.2% contraction it predicted in June, when business closures were at their peak. Some $12 trillion in stimulus supplied largely by advanced economies limited the damage, but poor countries and other emerging market economies faced a worsening picture, the global lender said. "The story is less dire than we thought three months ago, but dire nonetheless," IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said during a panel discussion that was held virtually.
Georgieva said governments needed to stay focused on their healthcare responses to coronavirus and must not withdraw stimulus prematurely. "If we cut these lifelines that have been extended to families and businesses before we are out of the health crisis, this could be catastrophic in terms of bankruptcies, unemployment and undoing all that has been done so far," she added.
CDC reports 214,446 deaths from coronavirus
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday reported 7,787,548 cases of coronavirus, an increase of 46,614 from its previous count, and said that the number of deaths had risen by 338 to 214,446. The CDC reported its tally of cases of the respiratory illness known as Covid-19, caused by a new coronavirus, as of 4 pm ET on 12 October versus its previous report a day earlier. The CDC figures do not necessarily reflect cases reported by individual states.
Trump takes bid to shield his tax returns back to U.S. Supreme Court
(Reuters) On Tuesday, President Donald Trump asked the U.S. Supreme Court to freeze a lower court's ruling allowing a prosecutor in New York City to enforce a subpoena seeking Trump's tax returns and other financial records for a criminal probe into him and his businesses. Trump's personal lawyers sought to put on hold a federal judge's decision that rejected the Republican president's claims that the subpoena was overly broad and amounted to political harassment by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, a Democrat.
The Supreme Court already has ruled once in the dispute, rejecting in July Trump's argument that he was immune from criminal probes as a sitting president. Trump's team said a temporary stay would allow him 'a fair chance to develop' his arguments against the subpoena. A spokesman for Vance declined to comment.
Vance's probe, which began more than two years ago, had focused on hush money payments that the president's former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen paid before the 2016 election to two women - an adult-film star and a former Playboy model - who said they had sexual encounters with Trump. The district attorney has suggested in recent court filings that the probe is now broader and could focus on potential bank, tax and insurance fraud, as well as falsification of business records.
The New York Times reported on Sept. 28 that Trump had paid $750 in federal income taxes in both 2016 and 2017, and no income taxes in 10 of the prior 15 years, reflecting chronic business losses that he used to avoid paying taxes. Trump has disputed the Times report. Trump, seeking re-election on Nov. 3, has refused to make his tax returns public, unlike his six immediate predecessors occupying the White House.
Countries turn to rapid antigen tests to contain second Covid-19 wave
Countries straining to contain a second wave of Covid-19 are turning to faster, cheaper but less accurate tests to avoid the delays and shortages that have plagued efforts to diagnose and trace those infected quickly. Germany, where infections jumped by 4,122 on Tuesday to 329,453 total, has secured 9 million so-called antigen tests per month that can deliver a result in minutes and cost about 5 euros ($5.90) each. That would, in theory, cover more than 10% of the population.
The United States and Canada are also buying millions of tests, as is Italy, whose recent tender for 5 million tests attracted offers from 35 companies. Germany's Robert Koch Institute (RKI) now recommends antigen tests to complement existing molecular PCR tests, which have become the standard for assessing active infections but which have also suffered shortages as the pandemic overwhelmed laboratories and outstripped manufacturers' production capacity.
PCR tests detect genetic material in the virus while antigen tests detect proteins on the virus's surface, though both are meant to pick up active infections. Another type of test, for antibodies the body produces in response to an infection, can help tell if somebody has had Covid-19 in the past. Like PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests, antigen tests require an uncomfortable nasal swab. They can also produce more 'false negatives', prompting some experts to recommend they only be used in a pinch. Still, the alarming rise in new infections globally has health officials desperately pursuing more options as the winter influenza season looms.
Facebook will ban ads which discourage people from getting vaccinated
Facebook Inc will start banning ads that explicitly discourage people from getting vaccinated, the world's largest social media company said on Tuesday, as it also announced a new flu vaccine information campaign.
Ads advocating for or against legislation or government policies around vaccines, including a Covid-19 vaccine, will still be allowed, the company said in a blog post. It will begin to enforce the new global policy in the next few days. Facebook, with 2.7 billion monthly active users, has been under pressure from lawmakers and public health groups to crack down on anti-vaccine content and misinformation on its platform. The company said that although a Covid-19 vaccine would not be available for some time, the pandemic had highlighted the importance of preventative health behaviors.
Facebook's previous rules prohibited ads containing vaccine misinformation or hoaxes identified by leading health organizations, but allowed ads opposing vaccines if they did not contain false claims. Facebook will also start directing U.S. users this week to information about the flu vaccine and how to get it, according to the company's Head of Health Kang-Xing Jin and Director of Product Management Rob Leathern in the blog post.
London mayor says tougher restrictions are “inevitable”
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has waned that tougher restrictions in the English capital are “inevitable” in the coming days as coronavirus cases continuue to rise.
"All the indicators I have – hospital admissions, ICU occupancy, the numbers of older people with cases, the prevalence of the disease, the positivity – are all going the wrong direction," he told Sky News.
“Which means, I'm afraid, it's inevitable over the course of the next few days London will have passed a trigger point to be in the second tier."
US Army chief returns to Pentagon after self-quarantine
The Army's chief of staff returned to the Pentagon on Tuesday, in a sign that the US military's Joint Chiefs of Staff were starting to move towards ending their self-quarantine following a coronavirus scare at a recent top-level meeting.
Two senior military officials who attended the meeting earlier this month tested positive for Covid-19, leading to almost all of the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff to go into self-quarantine last week.
"I was tested this morning and all negative and I've been cleared by the docs (doctors) to come back in," US Army Chief of Staff General James McConville said during a press conference at the Pentagon. (Reuters)
Mexico aims to vaccinate 116 million against coronavirus by end of 2021
Mexico plans to vaccinate more than 116 million people, or roughly 90% of its population, against the novel coronavirus by the end of 2021 after reaching accords with pharmaceutical companies and the World Health Organization-backed COVAX plan, the government said on Tuesday.
In a presentation led by Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, the government said it planned to start providing two of the four different types of vaccines being developed beginning in December.
Under the accords, U.S.-based Pfizer is expected to provide up to 34.4 million vaccines, Britain's AstraZeneca 77.4 million and China's CanSino 35 million.
The COVAX plan is expected to provide 51.57 million, the presentation showed. The vaccines by Pfizer, AstraZeneca and the COVAX plan require two doses, whereas the CanSino product works with a single dose, according to the plan, which was presented at President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's regular news briefing.
Mexican Finance Minister Arturo Herrera added that the country had allocated $1.659 billion for the purchases of the vaccines, which will be free for Mexicans. (Reuters)
Pelosi: “Significant changes must be made" to Trump's stimulus proposal
In a letter to house Democrats, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has outlined a series a major differences between Democrats and the Trump Administration in relation to stimulus negotiations - higlighting that the two sides are still very far from an agreement.
“Significant changes must be made to remedy the Trump proposal’s deficiencies,” Pelosi wrote after the White House unveiled a new coronavirus bill worth $1.8 trillion.
World Food Programme says needs $6.8 billion over next 6 months to avert famine
The United Nations World food programme (WFP) will need to raise $6.8 billion over the next six months to avert famine amid the current Covid-19 crisis, the agency said on Tuesday.
The WFP, which was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last week for its efforts to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict, said it has so far raised $1.6 billion.
"We've got a lot more money to raise to make certain we avert famine," David Beasley, executive director of the WFP, said at a conference organised by the U.N's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
Beaseley also noted that 7 million people have died from hunger this year as the Covid-19 pandemic, which could double hunger worldwide, claimed a further 1 million lives.
First confirmed case of coronavirus re-infection in US
A 25-year-old man in Nevada is the first person confirmed to have been infected with coronavirus twice in the US, a new study reveals.
"The second infection was symptomatically more severe than the first," write the authors of the study.
They said the man had no history of "clinically significant underlying conditions, and no indications of compromised immunity were identified."
Swedish confirmed Covid-19 cases during pandemic rise above 100,000
Sweden registered 2,203 new coronavirus cases in the last four days, Health Agency statistics showed on Tuesday, taking the total to 100,654 since the start of the pandemic.
Sweden has shunned lockdowns, leaving most schools, restaurants and businesses open throughout the pandemic. Sweden registered 5 new deaths since Friday, taking the total to 5,899 deaths.
Sweden's death rate per capita is several times higher than Nordic neighbours but lower than countries like Spain, Italy and the UK that opted for lockdowns.
US urged to rebuild with green focus
As attention increases on rebuilding economies after the coronavirus crisis, the United States should join the European Union and China in setting ambitious goals to become carbon neutral, the head of the U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said on Tuesday, via Reuters.
President Xi Jinping announced at the UN General Assembly last month that China aimed to become carbon neutral by 2060, while the European Union has pledged to achieve such status by 2050.
'All in all I think that this announcement is great, since at least European Union countries and China are now sharing common reason, that's very good news. And I hope that also the U.S. will join that club in the near future,' Petteri Taalas, WMO Secretary-General, told a briefing in Geneva.
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Congress taking chances for SCOTUS vote
The Republican-controlled Senate returns this month in a high-stakes gamble: three members tested positive for coronavirus as it's moving full-steam ahead to confirm a new justice to the Supreme Court.
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., one of the GOP senators to test positive, recently underscored his party's determination to wrap up the confirmation process for Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President Trump's nominee for the Supreme Court.
Johnson says he's ready to vote on the Senate floor for Barrett - infected or not.
J&J pauses vaccine trials due to unexplained illness
Johnson & Johnson said on Monday it has temporarily paused its covid-19 vaccine candidate clinical trials due to an unexplained illness in a study participant. The participant's illness is being reviewed and evaluated by an independent data and safety monitoring board as well as the company's clinical and safety physicians, it said in a statement.
Stat News reported the pause earlier in the day citing a document sent to outside researchers running the 60,000-patient clinical trial, which stated that a 'pausing rule' had been met, the online system used to enroll patients in the study had been closed and the data and safety monitoring board would be convened.
Roche plans to sell covid-19 antigen lab tests by end-2020
Roche plans to start selling a higher-volume covid-19 antigen test for laboratories by the end of the year as the Swiss drugmaker expands diagnostics for the pandemic.
'These fully automated systems can provide test results in 18 minutes for a single test (excluding time for sample collection, transport, and preparation), with a throughput of up to 300 tests per hour from a single analyser, depending on the analyser,' the group said in a statement.
The company did not immediately provide details on the accuracy of the antigen test compared to the more-common molecular tests that are now the industry standard in determining whether somebody has an active covid-19 infection.
"I feel so powerful, I'll walk into that audience. I'll walk in there, I'll kiss everyone in that audience.
"I'll kiss the guys and the beautiful women and the... everybody. I'll just give everybody a big, fat kiss."
First US covid-19 reinfection
With over three million Americans having tested positive for the novel coronavirus, we have now had our first confirmed case of reinfection. And authors of The Lancet's study say the second infection "was symptomatically more severe than the first."
The cases underscore the importance of social distancing and wearing masks even if you were previously infected with the virus, and they raise questions about how the human immune system reacts to the virus.
Full story from NPR below.
Mainland China reports first local covid-19 infections in nearly 2 months
Across in mainland China, the first locally transmitted covid-19 infections in nearly two months have been reported, as Qingdao launched a city-wide testing drive after discovering new cases linked to a hospital designated to treat imported infections, via Reuters.
The National Health Commission said in a statement that a total of 13 covid-19 infections were reported in mainland China on 12 October, down from 21 a day earlier. Seven of the new cases were imported infections that originated from overseas, while all six local cases were reported in the eastern province of Shandong, where Qingdao is located.
The last time China reported local covid-19 transmissions was on 15 August, when a total of four confirmed cases were reported in Xinjiang. The total number of covid-19 infections for mainland China now stands at 85,591, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4,634.
Attempts to keep covid-19 in check
China rushed on Tuesday, October 13, to test an entire city of 9 million within days after a minor coronavirus outbreak, as the WHO warned that letting the pathogen run free to achieve herd immunity was "scientifically and ethically problematic".
The virus is still spreading rapidly around the world, with well over 37 million infections, and nations that had suppressed their first outbreaks are now struggling with fresh surges – especially in some parts of Europe.
The following is a roundup of some of the latest scientific studies on the novel coronavirus and efforts to find treatments and vaccines for covid-19, the illness caused by the virus.
Rapping for change
Rapper Kanye West on Monday released his first official campaign video in his long-shot bid to be elected US president on 3 November, focusing on religion and families. How would he handle the covid-19 pandemic?
The Takeda Pharmaceutical Co-led group that is developing a blood plasma treatment for COVID-19 has started manufacturing while the late-stage trial to determine whether it works is ongoing, Takeda Chief Executive Christophe Weber said on Monday.
Two private groups focused on U.S. government ethics on Monday accused Attorney General William Barr of misusing his office to support President Donald Trump’s political goals and called on the House of Representatives to begin impeachment proceedings against him.
Democratic senators including vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris on Monday painted President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett as a threat to the Obamacare healthcare law during a deadly pandemic and denounced the Republican drive to approve her before the Nov. 3 U.S. election.
Travellers across Europe could avoid quarantine under plans to introduce a comprehensive COVID-19 testing regime, The Telegraph reported on Monday.
Covid-19 antibodies last at least three months
Reuters - People infected with Covid-19 develop antibodies targeting the new coronavirus that last for at least three months, according to two reports published on Thursday in Science Immunology. The two studies, together involving nearly 750 patients, both point to immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies, which start showing up well after an infection begins, as the longest-lasting. Researchers found IgG antibodies with two targets - a spike protein on the virus that helps it infect cells, and a part of the spike called the receptor binding domain (RBD) - lasted more than 100 days.
Three months after becoming ill, many Covid-19 patients still have symptoms, two studies confirm, and the more severe the initial infections, the higher the odds of persistent problems. In Spain, doctors checked back with 108 patients, including 44 who had been severely ill.
New US Covid-19 cases rise 11% last week
Reuters - The number of new Covid-19 cases rose 11% in the United States last week compared to the previous seven days, with infections spreading rapidly in the Midwest, which reported some of the highest positive test rates.
Deaths fell 3% to about 4,800 people for the week ended Oct. 11, according to the analysis of state and county reports. Since the pandemic started, nearly 215,000 people have died in the United States and over 7.7 million have become infected with the novel coronavirus.
Covid-19 reinfection in Nevada adds to questions on virus immunity
The case of man reinfected with the coronavirus, reported in a Lancet medical journal, joins a number of Covid-19 second-cases world-wide.
A Nevada man became the first published case of Covid-19 reinfection in the US, adding to a growing number of examples world-wide signaling that patients who have recovered from the viral disease might still be at risk of getting it again.
Donald Trump has tested negative for coronavirus on consecutive days
White House physician Sean Conley said on Monday that President Donald Trump has tested negative for Covid-19 on consecutive days, as the President heads to a crowded campaign rally in Florida.
"In response to your inquiry regarding the President's most recent Covid-19 tests, I can share with you that he has tested NEGATIVE, on consecutive days, using the Abbott BinaxNOW antigen card," Conley wrote, noting that those tests were taken "in context with additional clinical and laboratory data."
Joe Biden negative for Covid-19 - campaign
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden on Monday tested negative for Covid-19, his campaign said in a brief statement.
The former vice president was campaigning in Ohio ahead of the 3 November election.
President Donald Trump, who announced 10 days ago that he had tested positive for coronavirus, was set to hold his first rally since his diagnosis on Monday after saying he was no longer infectious.
North Dakota has less than 20 hospital beds available
As coronavirus cases continue to rise in North Dakota, concerns have been raised about the health system's ability to handle the influx of patients, with one official claiming there are now less than 20 beds available in the state.
“Right now, the hospitals have less than 20 beds available across the state,” said Renae Mock, director of Bismark-Burleigh Public Health (via CNN).
“We have some hospitals in very rural areas that are having difficulty meeting the demand, and having to send patients to different areas across the state of North Dakota, and even had to send out of state at some point to Sioux Falls [South Dakota] and also Billings, Montana.”
Donald Trump tests negative for Covid-19
Dr. Sean Conley has issued a statement confirming that president Donald Trump has tested negative for Covid-19 on consecutive days.
Coronavirus live US updates: welcome
Hello and welcome to our live, US-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which as of 19:30 ET on Monday had registered over 37.7 million cases and 1.07 million deaths worldwide.
In the US, the world's worst-affected country, there have been more than 7.8 million confirmed cases, leading to approximately 214,000 fatalities.