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U.S. Cases Remain High; Military Leader Reassures: Virus Update
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Top U.S. military commanders are “in good shape” after self-quarantining last week, the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a radio interview. The U.S. added 54,600 cases of Covid-19 infection, the fourth consecutive days with increases of more than 50,000.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said his state is doing “very well” outside of hot spots that have caused concern for the last two weeks. He renewed his warning that those areas will be targeted for increased enforcement of public-health measures.
President Donald Trump was flagged by Twitter for declaring himself immune to the Covid-19 virus, a day before returning to the campaign trail.
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Brazil reported 290 virus-related deaths in its latest daily count, the fewest since April 5, according to Health Ministry data. Weekly new cases fell to the lowest since early June during the seven days that ended Saturday.
The country, which has the most reported infections behind the U.S. and India, added 12,342 cases, bringing the total to almost 5.1 million. The official death toll rose to 150,488.
U.S. Joints Chiefs in Good Shape, Chairman Tells NPR (5:10 p.m. NY)
U.S. military leaders who quarantined last week after exposure to the coronavirus have kept Covid-19 at bay without thwarting their work, General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a National Public Radio interview.
“We’ve been strictly adhering to the CDC protocols and none of us are symptomatic and so in good shape,” Milley told NPR in an interview set to air Monday. ”The Joint Chiefs of Staff are fully functional, even though we’re functional from home.”
Milley is among the top officers who quarantined last week after the Coast Guard’s vice commandant, Admiral Charles Ray, tested positive and attended meetings with members of the Joint Chiefs. The assistant commandant of the Marine Corps, General Gary L. Thomas, subsequently tested positive.
Military leaders had attended a Sept. 27 ceremony at the White House honoring fallen service members and the Gold Star families they left behind.
Fauci Says Trump Ad Is Out of Context (3:12 p.m. NY)
Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease expert, says he’s being taken out of context in a campaign advertisement that touts President Donald Trump’s handling of the pandemic, CNN reported.
The ad, released by the Trump campaign after the president was discharged from a hospital where he was treated for Covid-19, shows a clip of an interview with Fauci saying, “I can’t imagine that anybody could be doing more.”
“In my nearly five decades of public service, I have never publicly endorsed any political candidate,” Fauci, who heads the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in a statement to CNN.
California Cases Climb, Texas Slows (2 p.m. NY)
California reported 3,803 new coronavirus cases, a 0.5% increase from the previous day, to 846,579, according to the health department’s website. The increase is greater than the previous week’s daily average. Deaths rose by 64 to 16,564.
Texas recorded 31 additional deaths for a total of 16,557. The number of new cases increased by 2,262, the least in six days, to 792,478.
New French Cases Decline (1:46 p.m. NY)
France reported a drop in new coronavirus cases to 16,101, the lowest number in five days following two record-breaking 24-hour periods. Deaths have increased at a slower pace.
Several provincial cities have been added to a list of urban centers, including Paris, that are on the highest alert for spread of Covid-19. The most recent is Toulouse, where bars will be ordered to shut down.
Trump, Pelosi Spar Over Stimulus (1:06 p.m. NY)
President Donald Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi blamed each other for a lack of progress on new plan to support the U.S. economy, while a senior White House aide said he expects talks to continue and a Fed official called for fiscal help.
After a week of shifting signals on the amount of stimulus and how to get there, Trump said on Fox News that Republicans are “having a hard time with Nancy Pelosi.” Pelosi labeled the administration’s offer on dealing with the health impact of the virus pandemic “grossly inadequate.”
“Is is hard to understand who is shaping their approach, which to date has been a miserable and deadly failure,” Pelosi said in a letter to Democratic lawmakers released on Sunday. “Until these serious issues are resolved, we remain at an impasse.”
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said earlier he expects Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Pelosi to hold more talks this week.
New York Vows Enforcement in Hot Spots (12:17 p.m. NY)
New York’s surge in cases slowed slightly, as it reported 1,143 new infections, a 0.2% rise compared with the average 0.3% daily increase over the previous seven days. It was the sixth consecutive day with more than 1,000 cases as the state battles hot spots in New York City and upstate.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said Sunday the state is doing “very well” overall, with a 0.84% positive test rate when excluding the hot spots. The rate in “clusters” where cases are elevated is 5.7%, he said in a telephone briefing.
“The clusters are generating the new cases, proportionately, because that’s what clusters do,” he said. Last week, Cuomo ordered schools and non-essential businesses closed in the worst-affected areas, and he repeated that those areas will be targeted for increased enforcement of public health measures.
Trump Says He’s Now Immune, Unlike Biden (12:02 p.m. NY)
President Donald Trump pitched what he called his post-infection immunity to Covid-19 as an advantage over Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, in his first interview since doctors certified he was no longer at risk of transmitting the deadly virus.
“Once you do recover, you’re immune, so you don’t have a president who has to hide in his basement, like his opponent,” Trump said Sunday in a lengthy interview on Fox News Channel’s “Sunday Morning Futures.”
“It looks like I’m immune for, I don’t know, maybe a long time, maybe a short time, it could be a lifetime, nobody really knows -- but I’m immune,” Trump said, adding that he had a “protective glow.”
Twitter took issue with a Trump tweet on the subject, flagging it as a rules violation for “spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to Covid-19.”
The Centers for Disease Control said in guidance last month that the agency “does not know if someone can be re-infected with Covid-19,” but also said there were no confirmed reports of reinfection within 3 months of initial infection.
Italy Cases Above 5,000 for Third Day a Row (11:10 a.m. NY)
Italy reported 5,456 new cases on Sunday, the second highest since late March, despite that lower numbers of testing were processed. The positivity rate, which has almost doubled in the last 10 days, jumped to 5.2%.
Italy’s government is considering reinforcing measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic as infections surge. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Health Minister Roberto Speranza and some members of the ruling coalition reviewed additional measures Saturday including restrictions on private parties, amateur sport activities and social gatherings, according to SkyTG24.
Ontario’s Infections Slow (11:04 a.m. NY)
Ontario’s new cases declined to 649 cases Saturday from 809 on Friday and a record 939 registered a day earlier, according to the public health agency.
Starting yesterday, the government of Canada’s most populous province imposed a set restrictions in Toronto, Ottawa and the Peel suburban region west of Toronto where are the regions recording most of the new cases.
New cases in Quebec also fell Saturday for a second straight day to 942, from 1,097 Friday from 1,102 a day earlier. The province has registered more than 1,000 cases in five of the last seven days.
Patriots-Broncos Game Postponed (10:07 a.m. NY)
The National Football League said the Denver Broncos-New England Patriots game set for Oct. 12 has been postponed. The Patriots’ facility was shut Sunday after another positive test. A new date and time for the game wasn’t announced.
“The decision was made to ensure the health and safety of players, coaches and game day personnel and in consultation with medical experts,” the NFL tweeted.
3:21 PM · Oct 11, 2020
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Coronavirus Can Persist on Banknotes, Study Finds (9:40 a.m. NY)
The new coronavirus may remain infectious for weeks on banknotes, glass and other common surfaces, according to research by Australia’s top biosecurity laboratory that highlights risks from paper currency, touchscreen devices and grab handles and rails.
Scientists at the Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness showed SARS-CoV-2 is “extremely robust,” surviving for 28 days on smooth surfaces such as glass found on mobile phone screens and plastic banknotes at room temperature, or 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit). That compares with 17 days survival for the flu virus.
Virus survival declined to less than a day at 40 degrees Celsius on some surfaces, according to the study, published Monday in Virology Journal. The findings add to evidence that the Covid-19-causing coronavirus survives for longer in cooler weather, making it potentially harder to control in winter than summer.
Czechs Plan ‘Improved’ Lockdown (8:10 a.m. NY)
The Czech government is likely to impose significantly stricter social-distancing rules to curb the European Union’s worst coronavirus surge -- without crippling the economy, according to the finance minister.
The cabinet on Monday will decide on more steps to limit human contacts after it banned cultural and sports events, shut some schools and ordered bars and restaurants to close at 8 p.m., Alena Schillerova said on Czech Television.
More Spanish Regions Tighten Restrictions (8:05 a.m. NY)
After a state of emergency was imposed on Madrid last week, other Spanish regions are tightening restrictions to curb the spread of Covid-19.
Authorities in Navarra said they plan to reduce capacity to 30% in restaurants and bars, which must now close by 10 p.m., and limit social gatherings to no more than six people, according to El Mundo. Unlike in Madrid, the Navarra government said it won’t forbid people from leaving the region.
U.S. Cases Top 50,000 for Fourth Day (8:00 a.m. NY)
The U.S. added 54,600 cases on Saturday, the fourth straight day over 50,000 as the nation’s caseload ticks up again, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg.
The 0.7% rise was above the average 0.6% daily increase in the previous seven days. Total cases are 7,717,633. An additional 628 people died, in line with recent increases. Total fatalities are 214,367.
— With assistance by Ian Fisher, Yueqi Yang, Esteban Duarte, Linus Chua, Sarah Jacob, Tara Patel, Charlie Devereux, Chris Vellacott, Sonia Sirletti, Jason Gale, Justin Sink, and Jennifer A Dlouhy