USA coronavirus: cases, deaths, stimulus checks and news of 28 October

USA coronavirus live online updates: cases, deaths and latest news

US live: coronavirus updates today

US coronavirus latest: headlines

- US adds nearly 500,000 cases in a week

- White House press release lists "ending the covid-19 pandemic" among first-term Trump achievements

US covid-19 latest: 20:30 PT / 22:30 ET on Wednesday 28 October (03:30 CET Thurs. 29 October) 

Latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University.

Worldwide

Cases: 44,393,629
Deaths: 1,172,745
Recoveries: 29,985,093

US

Cases: 8,855,180
Deaths: 227,673
Recoveries: 3,518,140

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Millions set to lose coronavirus relief funds

As winter closes in so too does economic hardship for millions of Americans as unemployment benefits dry up and covid-19 relief aid programs expire.

State distribution of Covid-19 vaccines could cause confusion

Former Department of Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius believes that when an effective Covid-19 is widely available, distribution should be centralised. "The state-by-state approach is, you know, to put a fine point on it, is pretty nuts as far as I'm concerned,” she said. “It leaves a high possibility of very inequitable distribution and kind of chaotic transportation to get to sites where you vaccinate." 

pfizer

Britain expects verdict on Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine before AstraZeneca

Senior sources in the British government expect a verdict on whether Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE's COVID-19 vaccine works will be available before AstraZeneca Plc's competing vaccine, the Times reported. Britain believes that Pfizer's vaccine could be ready to distribute before Christmas, the report said.

NFL considering reducing Super Bowl capacity due to Covid-19 concerns

The NFL said on Wednesday it was exploring the possibility of reducing seating capacity to 20% at February's Super Bowl in Tampa, Florida, because of Covid-19. The home of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which had been expected to have a capacity crowd of close to 75,000 for the 7 February NFL championship game, would instead host between 13,000 and 15,000 fans, making one of the most sought-after tickets in sport even tougher to find, ESPN reported on Wednesday.

The NFL said it was still refining its plans for the game, a money-making annual media spectacle that attracts thousands of fans to different host cities each year. "There have been 19 teams that have already or have been authorized by public authorities to host regular-season games," a spokesman said. "The average has been around 20% with fans seated in pods and everyone wearing face coverings. Among the scenarios we are exploring is a capacity of around that figure but we anticipate it could grow as we get closer to the game."

 

Child hunger highest in decade due to management of pandemic

According to USA Today, before the pandemic low-income children got half of their calories from school meals.

With many schools closed for in-person learning and high unemployment, covid-19 has driven children's food insecurity (defined as lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life) to the highest level in decades.

Trump administration claims virus defeated amid record breaking new covid-19 cases

The White House's Office of Science and Technology clarified in a press release today that the "decisive actions to engage scientists and health professionals in academia, industry, and government to understand, treat, and defeat the disease” was what was meant by success.

In the past week the US saw almost half a million new coronavirus cases, in record high surges since the last peak in June 2020. 

President Trump mocks treatment of covid-19 in the media, as US cases continue to soar

Trump, speaking one day after the US set a record for new single-day infections continues his rhetoric on minimising the pandemic to benefit his re-election campaign.  

The president seems to be suggesting that the media attention on covid-19 is an attempt at voter suppression.

 

World's most prestigious marathon in Boston postponed beyond April 2021 for covid-19

The Boston Athletic Association said Wednesday that it won’t hold the 124th edition of it's 26.2 mile race as scheduled in April because of the covid-19 pandemic. Organisers say it will be put off “at least until the fall of 2021.”

This year’s marathon was initially postponed until the fall and later canceled outright. 

Pandemic cancels two Conference USA games

Two Conference USA games scheduled for the weekend, including No. 19 Marshall at Florida International, have been postponed because of covid-19 issues.

Marshall was scheduled to play Friday night, but FIU had to call off the game because of a lack of available scholarship players.

North Texas at UTEP on Saturday was called off because a surge in covid-19 cases in El Paso, Texas, has led to a stay-at-home order in the city, reports the AP.

 

Thousands of inmates in US freed since covid-19 pandemic, leads to hopes for justice reform

The covid-19 pandemic prompted U.S. localities to free inmates held on low-level charges. Now, advocates aim to alter long-entrenched judicial policies. 

A total of 170,000 prisoners (11% of the prison population) in jails and state prisons were freed this spring, to attempt to curb the spread of coronavirus. While some are concerned about a rise in crime following the releases, it is also providing the United States with an opportunity to experiment with a big idea: unwinding the country’s signature practice of mass incarceration.

America locks away far more people – 2.1 million – than any other nation. In jails, which largely hold people awaiting trial, thousands have died behind bars without being convicted of the charges they faced, a Reuters investigation found.

Read the full Reuters investigation.

 

Joe Biden coronavirus donald trump

Joe Biden promises not to make "false promises" about pandemic

The Associated Press reports that Joe Biden, challenging President Donald Trump for the White House in less than a week, has said today that he is “not running on the false promises of being able to end this pandemic by flipping a switch” but would prioritise science.

Biden is continuing to focus his messaging on healthcare and the virus, as a Supreme Court vote looms to threaten Obamacare and covid-19 cases surge across the US in a second wave of infections. Biden said that Trump’s handling of the pandemic was an “insult” to its victims, and promised he would "start on day one doing the right things.”

Which states are in the Rust Belt of the US and why are they important for the 2020 presidential election?

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Wall St

Wall Street main indexes slumped on Wednesday as a surge in coronavirus cases in the United States and Europe dashed hopes of a quick global economic recovery.

Shares of hotels, airlines and other companies sensitive to covid-19-related curbs dropped with Wynn Resorts down 2% and the S&P 1500 airlines index declining 3%. The energy index lost about 3% as oil prices fell on fears of lower fuel demand.

New cases and hospitalizations set records in the U.S. Midwest, while concerns over a national lockdown in France and tighter restrictions in Germany sapped investor appetite for risk.

Canada reaches 10,000 covid-19 related death milestone

“What we are living through is a horrific national tragedy. Families have lost loved ones, been devastated by these tragedies, and we need to know that there are more tragedies to come,” prime minister Justin Trudeau said, hours before his public health agency listed 10,001 fatalities.

Dodgers chief defends Turner after World Series celebrations despite positive test

The LA Dodgers’ president of baseball operations, Andrew Friedman, has defended Justin Turner after the player was seen celebrating the franchises’s World Series win with team-mates despite having tested positive for covid-19.

Friedman claimed Turner "was mindful of other people", despite the 35-year-old being seen maskless next to colleagues as the Dodgers posed for photos.

I can't state strongly enough how big a role he's played in the success of this organisation,” Friedman told reporters.

"For him, being a free agent, not knowing how the future's going to play out, I don't think there was anyone that was going to stop him from going out.

"At least from my perspective - not watching it super closely with everything that was going on - I think he was mindful of other people, especially other people he hadn't already been in contact with.”

You'll find Friedman's comments in full here.

Eli Lilly to supply US 300,000 vials of potential covid-19 drug

Eli Lilly and Co said today it has signed a $375m agreement with the US government to supply 300,000 vials of its experimental antibody drug to treat covid-19.

The agreement is for delivery over the two months following an emergency use authorization if granted by US regulators.

The US government also has the provision to purchase up to an additional 650,000 vials through 30 June 2021, the company said.

The company submitted a request to the US Food and Drug Administration in October for emergency use authorization of the drug for treating mild to moderate covid-19 patients.

The US government has committed that patients will have no out-of-pocket costs for the medicine, although healthcare facilities may charge a fee for the product's administration, Lilly said.

(Reuters)

El Paso, Texas - covid-19

Inundated with covid-19 patients

A nurse waits for a patient outside tents set up for an overflow of coronavirus patients at University Medical Center in El Paso, Texas, on Tuesday.

(REUTERS/Paul Ratje)

Callous Trump administration has failed Americans - Biden campaign adviser

Symone Sanders, a senior adviser on the Joe Biden presidential campaign, has hit out at the "callousness" of the Trump administration after a White House news release listed "ending the covid-19 pandemic" among the achievements of the president’s first term in office.

It pains me to think about the callousness of the White House, obviously the pandemic is not over,” Sanders told CNN on Wednesday.

She added: “Frankly, Donald Trump and the Trump administration have failed the American people on this."

Covid-19

Half a million will die if US doesn’t change ways - CNN expert

The US coronavirus death toll will cross the 500,000 mark if the country’s handling of the pandemic doesn’t improve, CNN medical expert Dr Jonathan Reiner says.

"If we continue our current behavior, by the time we start to go down the other side of the curve, a half a million people will be dead," Dr Reiner said on Tuesday.

Twenty-nine of the US’ 50 states have reported at least one record single-day case count in October, CNN also noted, citing data gathered by Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Ashish Jha, the dean of Brown University School of Public Health, told the media outlet that the US is in danger of seeing daily infections rise to six figures

"We're rising quickly," Dr Jha said. "If we just go back about six, seven weeks ago to Labor Day, we were at about 35,000 cases a day. 

“We're above 70,000 and just heading up. I would not be surprised if we end up getting to 100,000."

(Photo: REUTERS/Paul Ratje)

Turner returns to field to celebrate World Series win despite positive test

Third baseman Justin Turner posed for photos with team-mates after LA Dodgers' World Series win on Tuesday, despite being removed from Game Six and told to isolate after it emerged he had contracted covid-19.

"We learned during the game that Justin tested positive, he was immediately isolated to prevent any spread," Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said in the wake of Turner's positive test.

However, after initially being absent from the Dodgers' celebrations, Turner then returned to the field for a team photo, pulling off his mask. Members of the Dodgers were given masks before celebrating.

The team were to receive rapid tests when they returned to their hotel rooms, according to ESPN.

Turner said he felt great and had "no symptoms at all". "Just experienced every emotion you can possibly imagine," he tweeted. "Can't believe I couldn't be out there to celebrate with my guys! So proud of this team & unbelievably happy for the City of LA."

MLB had gone almost two months without a positive test for the new coronavirus, which had threatened to derail the season amid outbreaks on the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals.

(Reuters contributed to this post)

US elections: live

We also have rolling coverage of the run-up to the 2020 US presidential and congressional elections, which are now just six days away. 

Live updates here:

White House lists “ending pandemic” among first-term accomplishments

A White House press release has listed ending the coronavirus pandemic among the achievements of Donald Trump’s first term as US president.

"Highlights include: ENDING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC," a document issued by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy read. 

It added: "From the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Administration has taken decisive actions to engage scientists and health professionals in academia, industry, and government to understand, treat, and defeat the disease."

The claim comes despite the US registering 491,000 new cases in the past week, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, and setting records for daily case counts.

The US registered a record daily count of 83,851 new covid-19 cases on Saturday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

Coronavirus live US updates: welcome

Hello and welcome to our live, US-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which as of 06:00 ET had registered over 44 million cases and nearly 1.17 million deaths worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University.

In the US, the world's worst-affected country, there have been almost 8.8 million cases leading to more than 226,700 fatalities, data compiled by Johns Hopkins said.

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