The US re-register a new record of daily cases of coronavirus

LUBBOCK, USA, 26 jun (Reuters) – the united States has seen at least 40.870 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, the biggest increase of the pandemic in a single day, according to a count by Reuters, that brings the total number of positives in the country to at least 2,475 million.

Archive photo of a health worker at the Texas Medical Center in Houston.
Jun 22, 2020. REUTERS/Callaghan O’hare

The record of positive tests occurs when several states in the center of a new increase in the infection retreated in their efforts to relieve constraints on the business.

Governor Greg Abbott gave to the bars of Texas until Friday afternoon to close and demanded that restaurants limit the seating capacity in the inside 50%, while the Department of Business and Professional Regulation Florida told the bars to stop serving alcohol immediately.

The announcement of Abbott, a republican who is in his second term, surprised the owners of the bars. Mark Martinez is heard when a few friends sent text messages.

“I spent thousands of dollars in inventory getting ready for this weekend. Really could have used that (money) for my rental, which expires next week,” said Martinez, 44 years old.

Florida issued the new measures after registering amazing 8.942 new cases of COVID-19, skip and a jump from the previous record of 5.511 new infections as of June 24.

The governor of California, Gavin Newsom, said Friday that the county of Imperial, east of Los Angeles, he was so overwhelmed that the state was recommending strict orders to stay at home. He also said that, in response to increasing hospitalizations, has made a pause to allow the counties to reopen their economies.

The mayor of Anchorage, in Alaska, Ethan Berkowitz, issued an emergency order that requires residents to wear masks in closed public spaces after the state identified 836 cases up to the Friday, with 387 of them in your city.

Texas had been at the forefront of states that eliminated restrictions designed to control the pandemic. Allowed the bars reabrieran in may, when the people ignored the rules of social distancing and held during the weekend of Memorial Day.

Since then, he has seen some of the largest increases in new cases in the country, reporting 5.996 Thursday. The state has also seen a record number of hospitalizations in the past two weeks.

Almost 125,000 americans have died from COVID-19, the greatest number of deaths known by the highly infectious disease in the world.

Despite the grim news from Texas, Florida, and other localities, the president, Donald Trump said that the country was coming out of a crisis that stopped to a large part of the economy and left millions without a job.

“We have a little work to do, and what we will do. We are having very good numbers in terms of the return, the return of our nation, and I think that it goes very fast and it’s going to be very good,” said Trump, at an event at the White House.

Also reported record-breaking increases of cases this week, Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, Idaho, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Wyoming.

Information Brad Brooks in Lubbock, additional Reporting by Jonathan Allen, Nathan Layne and Peter Szekely in New York, Jane Ross in Los Angeles, and Yereth Rosen in Anchorage, Written by Alistair Bell and Dan Whitcomb,; Edited in Spanish by Javier López de Lérida and Manuel Farias

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South Korea reports recovered patients are testing positive for coronavirus again

Several people in a shopping center enjoy the view towards a park and at the same time try to maintain social distance to protect themselves from the coronavirus. South Korea, April 8, 2020. FILE. REUTERS / Heo Ran

SEOUL, Apr 10 (Reuters) – South Korean authorities reported on Friday that 91 patients who had allegedly recovered from the coronavirus tested positive for the disease again.

Jeong Eun-kyeong, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), told a news conference that the virus could have been “reactivated” rather than the patients being reinfected.

South Korean health authorities say the causes of the trend remain unclear, and are being investigated by epidemiologists.

The possibility that a person may be reinfected with the virus is a factor of international concern, as many countries hope that their already infected populations can develop sufficient immunity to contain the pandemic.

The figure reported by South Korea shows a rise from 51 reported cases of second infection on Monday.

Nearly 7,000 South Koreans have recovered from COVID-19, the disease that causes the coronavirus.

“The number will simply go up, 91 is the beginning for now,” said Kim Woo-joo, professor of infectious diseases at Guro Hospital, University of Korea.

KCDC’s Jeong explained that there was a possibility that patients had undergone a “reactivation” of the virus rather than being reinfected.

Reports by Josh Smith and Sangmi Cha. Edited in Spanish by Marion Giraldo

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Mayor in virus-hit South Korean city says outbreak may be slowing

SEOUL (Reuters) – The mayor of the South Korean city hardest hit by that country’s coronavirus outbreak expressed cautious hope on Sunday that the numbers of new cases may be dropping, after the rate of increase slowed to its lowest in 10 days.

Women wearing masks to prevent contracting the coronavirus take a walk at a Han River park in Namyangju, South Korea March 7, 2020. REUTERS / Kim Hong-Ji

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Sunday 272 new coronavirus cases, for a total of 7,313 in the country. Two further deaths took the toll to 50, it added.

The increase in cases was lower than the same period a day before, though health officials have warned that numbers could fluctuate as more tests are processed.

In the city of Daegu, which accounts for as much as 75% of all of South Korea’s confirmed cases, Mayor Kwon Young-jin told reporters the number of new cases has dropped below 300 for the first time since Feb. 29, Yonhap news agency reported.

“The increase in the number of infection cases is showing signs of slowing down,” he said, according to Yonhap.

Daegu and two neighboring areas have been declared “special care zones” by the government, which has sent extra medical supplies and staff and deployed military troops to disinfect the streets.

KCDC director Jeong Eun-kyeong said the decrease appeared to be due to the fact that authorities were nearing the end of testing more than 200,000 members of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, which was at the center of the largest outbreaks.

“We put the Shincheonji church followers in quarantine to prevent the further spread of and tested them, and many of confirmed cases came from them,” she told reporters during a briefing in Seoul. “The testing of the church followers is almost finished, so the number of confirmed cases has dropped accordingly.”

South Korea has conducted one of the most ambitious coronavirus testing programs in the world, with thousands of people being tested every day.

Health officials have tested a total of 181,384 people suspected of having the virus, with 162,008 testing negative.

U.S. Forces Korea (USFK), the military command that oversees about 28,500 American troops stationed in South Korea, said it was analyzing the potential impact from a U.S. Army to stop any travel by soldiers to or from South Korea.

Seven people connected to USFK, including one soldier, have tested positive for the illness.

Facing shortages of face masks, the government will impose a rationing system to limit the number of masks each person can buy each week, starting on Monday.

On Sunday, South Korea’s Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun issued a public message, asking citizens to “actively cooperate” with the efforts to make sure healthcare workers and sick people have access to enough masks.

“Even if you feel inconvenienced, I ask you to show a mature sense of civil awareness, based on concessions, consideration and cooperation so that people who really need face masks can buy them,” he said.

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The government has imposed export restrictions on masks and urged factories to increase production.

South Korea – which has confirmed the largest number of coronavirus cases outside of China – has also faced an increasing number of travel restrictions, with more than 100 other countries imposing at least some restrictions on arrivals from South Korea.

The issue of travel restrictions rekindled a political and economic feud between South Korea and Japan last week, as South Korea said on Friday it would suspend visas and visa waivers for Japan in response to Tokyo’s own travel restrictions on Koreans.

Reporting by Josh Smith; Editing by Lincoln Feast, Christopher Cushing and Louise Heavens

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Ten die at collapsed China quarantine hotel; ex-Wuhan spread slows virus

SHANGHAI / BEIJING (Reuters) – Ten people have died and 23 remain trapped after the collapse of a hotel that was being used to quarantine people under observation for the coronavirus in the Chinese city of Quanzhou, authorities said on Sunday.

Rescue workers are seen on the site where a hotel being used for the novel coronavirus quarantine collapsed in the southeast Chinese port city of Quanzhou, Fujian province, China March 7, 2020. cnsphoto via REUTERS.

More than 70 people were believed to have been initially trapped in the seven storey building, which collapsed on Saturday evening.

As of 16:00 Beijing time on Sunday, authorities had retrieved 48 individuals from the site of the collapse, with 38 of them sent to hospitals, the Ministry of Emergency Management said.

Pictures from the site showed rescue workers clad in hard hats, goggles and face masks carrying injured people away to waiting medical staff in white overalls and surgical masks.

A rescue force of over 1,000 people, including firefighters, police forces, and other emergency responders, arrived at the site on Saturday night, authorities told a media conference organized by the Quanzhou government on Sunday.

Of the 71 people inside the hotel at the time of the collapse, 58 had been under quarantine, they added.

According to state media outlet Xinhua, the owner of the building, a man surnamed Yang, has been summoned by police.

The building’s first floor had been under renovation at the time of the collapse, the news agency said.

News of the collapse comes as the spread of COVID-19 continues to slow in China.

According to data from China’s National Health Commission (NHC), cases fell by roughly one half on Saturday from the day prior.

The agency confirmed 44 new cases of the COVID-19 disease caused by the new coronavirus as at the end of March 7, a decline from 99 the previous day.

Chinese cities are gradually relaxing quarantine measures put in place over a month ago, while authorities keep a close watch on the virus’ spread overseas.

Of the 44 new confirmed cases, 41 were discovered in Wuhan, the origin of the virus’ outbreak and its hotbed.

The remaining three were cases imported from outside mainland China.

This marks the second consecutive day in which all of China’s newly confirmed cases outside the city of Wuhan originated from overseas. The three cases bring China’s total imported case count to 63.

FILE PHOTO: A community worker in protective suit disinfects a residential compound in Wuhan, the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak, Hubei province, China March 6, 2020. REUTERS / Stringer

According to the Beijing Municipal Health Commission, two of the cases found in Beijing originated in Italy and Spain.

As the virus slows its spread in Wuhan, the center of the epidemic, authorities have reacted by halting operations of hospitals built specifically to house its patients.

State television reported on Sunday that operations of 11 makeshift hospitals had been suspended and the remaining ones would be out of service by around March 10, although they could be used again depending on the virus situation.

Reporting by Josh Horwitz, Huizhong Wu and Kevin Yao; Editing by Lincoln Feast and Elaine Hardcastle

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Cruise ship hit by coronavirus outbreak bound for Oakland, California

(Reuters) – The cruise ship Grand Princess, held at sea and barred from returning to San Francisco last week due to a coronavirus outbreak aboard the vessel, has been directed to the nearby port of Oakland, the cruise line said on Saturday, presumably to be placed under quarantine.

The Grand Princess cruise ship carrying passengers who have tested positive for coronavirus is seen in the Pacific Ocean outside San Francisco, California, U.S. March 7, 2020.REUTERS / Stephen Lam

The ship, carrying some 2,400 passengers and 1,100 crew members, is due to reach Oakland, across San Francisco Bay from its original home port destination, on Monday, with the arrival time yet to be determined, Princess Cruises said in a statement.

The late-night announcement capped four days of uncertainty surrounding the vessel – the ship has been linked with at least four coronavirus cases from an earlier voyage – and the fate of 3,500 people returning from a cruise to Hawaii.

Princess Cruises, a unit of the world’s leading cruise operator, Carnival Corp, said its information about the ship’s revised destination came from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which is coordinating the operation with state and local officials.

The timing of the statement, just minutes after an earlier notice, suggested that arrangements remained in flux.

The company’s first notice said the Grand Princess was to “proceed to the Port of Oakland on Sunday to begin disembarking guests who require acute medical treatment and hospitalization.”

It went on to say those passengers would be “transported to medical facilities in California.”

Citing information from the governor’s Office of Emergency Services, the earlier statement also said that all remaining passengers would get off the ship on Monday.

Passengers from California, it said, would then go to a “federally operated facility within California for testing and isolation, while non-Californians will be transported by the federal government to facilities in other states.”

“Crew will be quarantined and treated aboard the ship,” it said.

MODIFICATIONS

The update issued several minutes later said the “CDC has just informed us that further modifications of the plan are necessary” and that the ship would arrive in Oakland on Monday instead. No mention was made of the quarantine details described in the previous notice.

The predicament of the Grand Princess is reminiscent of the Diamond Princess cruise liner, also owned by Carnival, which was quarantined off Japan in February and was for a time the largest concentration of coronavirus cases outside of China, where the outbreak originated. About 700 people aboard that ship became infected, and six have died.

The Grand Princess was first denied entry to San Francisco Bay on Wednesday after state and local health authorities learned that some passengers and crew had developed flu-like symptoms, and that two guests from an earlier cruise to Mexico aboard the same ship later tested positive for coronavirus. One has died.

Health authorities say they probably contracted the respiratory virus aboard the vessel. Since then, at least two other passengers from the Mexico voyage have also been diagnosed.

California Governor Gavin Newsom insisted the ship remain at sea until individuals aboard who were sick could be tested, and diagnostic kits were flown to the ocean liner by Air National Guard helicopter on Thursday.

On Friday, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, leading the U.S. government response to the coronavirus, announced that 21 crew members and passengers had tested positive. He said then the ship would ultimately be brought to an unspecified non-commercial port where everyone aboard would undergo another round of tests.

Pence said those requiring medical care would receive it and that all crew members would likely remain quarantined aboard the vessel. But he left unclear what was in store for passengers who showed no signs or symptoms of infection.

The vessel, which had remained in international waters, was still at sea late on Saturday.

Reporting by Steve Gorman in Los Angeles; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle and Mark Potter

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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U.S. excludes Chinese face masks, medical gear from tariffs as coronavirus spreads

PHOTO FILE: Raymond Determann, a King County Metro equipment service worker, sprays a Virex solution to sanitize buses against the coronavirus in Seattle, Washington, U.S. March 5, 2020. REUTERS / Jason Redmond

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Trade Representative’s office in recent days granted exclusions from import tariffs for dozens of medical products imported from China, including face masks, hand sanitizing wipes and examination gloves, filings with the agency showed on Friday.

Many of the exclusion requests for medical products appear to have been expedited amid the rapidly spreading coronavirus outbreak, with approvals granted just over one month past a Jan. 31 application deadline.

Requests to exclude other products from President Donald Trump’s Section 301 tariffs on Chinese goods have taken months. Apple Inc’s requests for exclusions on products from AirPod headphones to the HomePod smart speaker filed on Oct. 31 are still pending.

Medline International Inc has already received exclusions on 30 products ranging from surgical gowns to face masks and medicine cups, most of which the company applied for at the end of January. A number of the exclusions were granted on Thursday, USTR documents showed.

The products were included in a fourth round of tariffs on Chinese goods imposed by Trump on Sept. 1, 2019, amid heated U.S.-China trade negotiations.

The tariff rate on the medical products was initially set at 15%, but was lowered to 7.5% on Feb. 15 as part of the Phase 1 U.S.-China trade agreement. The deal leaves in place tariffs on about $ 370 billion worth of imports from China, including 25% duties on goods valued at around $ 250 billion.

Reporting by David Lawder; editing by Jonathan Oatis

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