Covid-19 Information: Stay Updates – The New York Instances

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Coronavirus Live Updates: Worldwide Cases Reach 20 Million

Nearly 500 million school children have been excluded from learning, according to a report.

In the past six months, around 1.5 billion children around the world have been told to stay home from school to minimize coronavirus transmission. According to a report from Unicef, the United Nations agency for children, more than 30 percent of these students – around 463 million – had no access to distance learning opportunities when their schools closed.

"The sheer number of children whose education has been completely interrupted for months is a global educational emergency," said Henrietta Fore, Unicef's executive director, in a statement. "The effects were felt in economies and societies in the coming decades."

School children in sub-Saharan Africa are hardest hit, the report said The education systems there have failed to reach around half of all students via television, radio, the Internet or other forms of distance learning. According to a separate report released Wednesday by Human Rights Watch, many children in the area have been out of school since March.

To remedy this unequal access, education officials in Kenya said last month they would cancel the academic year and get students to repeat it.

Forty percent of students in the Middle East and North Africa, 38 percent in South Asia and 34 percent in Eastern Europe and Central Asia were unable to study remotely, according to the Unicef ​​report, in which children in rural areas were disproportionately affected.

In general, students from higher income households and better educated parents seem to be better off studying at home, researchers around the world have found. This has heightened concerns that school closings could be another avenue to exacerbate long-standing inequalities caused by the pandemic.

Trump administration officials on Wednesday defended a new recommendation that people without Covid-19 symptoms should forego testing, despite scientists warning that policies could hamper an already weak federal response if schools reopen and one there is a risk of a potential crash

The day after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the revised guidelines, there were conflicting reports about who was responsible.

Two federal health officials said the shift was an instruction to the C.D.C. from senior positions in the White House and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Adm. Brett P. Giroir, the government's coronavirus test tsar, called it a "C.D.C. Action, ”but he acknowledged the revision came after a heated debate among members of the White House's coronavirus task force – including the newest member, Dr. Scott W. Atlas, a frequent guest on Fox News and a special adviser to President Trump.

"We all signed it, the documents, before it ever got to any place the political leadership would have seen, and that document was mutually approved by the task force," said Dr. Giroir. He said "there was no weight on the scales" from the president.

Regardless of who was responsible, the postponement matters a lot, which contradicts scientific evidence that people without symptoms can be the most productive spreaders of the virus.

And it comes at a very precarious time.

Hundreds of thousands of college and K-12 students are returning to campus, and comprehensive testing plans are central to many of their schools' plans. Businesses are reopening, and academics inside and outside the administration are increasingly concerned about political interference with academic decisions.

"The only plausible rationale," said New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, a Democrat, "is that fewer people should take tests because, as the president said, if we don't take tests, you won't." know the number of people who are Covid-positive. "

In an interview, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the nation's leading infectious disease expert, said he saw an early iteration of the new guidelines and made no objection.

However, the final debate on the revisions took place during a meeting that Dr. Fauci couldn't attend. In retrospect, he had "some concerns" about advising people not to get tested.

"I'm concerned that it will be misinterpreted," he said.

The Department of Justice has asked New York, New Jersey, Michigan and Pennsylvania for information about actions their governors have taken in response to the pandemic to see if they may have contributed to the spread of the disease in nursing homes.

The department said the governors' policies, all Democrats, may have allowed people access to elderly care facilities without proper testing.

It cited an order dated March 25 from New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said that no resident of a nursing home could be denied admission or readmission "solely on the basis of a confirmed or suspected diagnosis of Covid-19".

The department said it could open a formal investigation, depending on the information it receives from states.

"The Civil Rights Division is trying to determine whether government orders mandating the admission of Covid-19 patients to nursing homes are responsible for the deaths of nursing home residents," the department said in a statement on Wednesday.

The request for information comes at a sensitive time for Mr Cuomo.

Republicans in state and Washington legislature have said its policies are responsible for 6,500 coronavirus-related deaths in nursing homes and other care facilities, a number much higher than any other state.

Around 40 percent of the nearly 180,000 deaths in the United States attributable to the coronavirus are associated with nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, according to a New York Times database.

According to Mr. Cuomo's office, New York, New Jersey, and Michigan belong to a group of eight States that include suspected Covid-19 deaths, rather than just confirmed deaths, in their total nursing home deaths.

The questions and any subsequent federal investigations would only apply to facilities operated or owned by the state, the governor's office said, which is a small percentage of the total.

Mr Cuomo said infected health care workers, and not his policies, helped spread the virus in the state's nursing homes.

He made a joint statement with Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer calling for efforts "Nothing more than a transparent politicization of the Ministry of Justice in the middle of the republican national convention."

The statement also said: "At least 14 states – including Kentucky, Utah and Arizona – have issued similar nursing guidelines, all based on federal guidelines, yet the four states listed in the D.O.J.'s request have a Democratic governor."

The statement also suggested that the department send a similar letter to the Federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "since the state's recommendations have been modeled on them".

On Wednesday, California officials announced an agreement to more than double the state's coronavirus testing capacity and improve test scores in no more than two days.

Governor Gavin Newsom said the agreement with PerkinElmer, a Massachusetts-based diagnostics company, would allow California to essentially build its own testing lab as the flu season approaches, running tens of thousands of additional tests daily and up to 150,000 new tests daily through November Until Spring. The state currently runs an average of 100,000 coronavirus tests per day.

Leveraging California's size and formidable purchasing power, the contract calls for the company to deliver results in 24 to 48 hours to help public health officials identify and contain outbreaks more quickly. And the state will pay about $ 31 per test compared to $ 150 to $ 200 now.

"That is exactly what the federal government should do," Newsom said, adding that the contract will save taxpayers, employers and health insurers billions of dollars.

The announcement came shortly after the federal agencies for disease control and prevention tacitly rolled back their testing guidelines, saying that people who have no symptoms of Covid-19 no longer needed to be tested even if exposed to the virus – a change Federal officials said it was ruled by senior officials in the Trump administration.

Public health experts, who attribute much of the virus's spread to infected but not symptomatic people, described the policy change as alarming and dangerous.

California was the first state to recommend testing some people with no symptoms, and officials expressed the need for extensive testing – especially for people disproportionately affected by the virus, such as Latinos who work in key jobs.

However, in mid-July, the state had to narrow its testing guidelines as it faced rising cases and a national shortage of test material.

The availability of tests has varied widely across the country and the wait for results has in some cases stretched to weeks, making it impossible to warn contacts in time to contain the spread. The start of the flu season is expected to make things worse as doctors run even more tests to see if a patient with respiratory symptoms has the flu or Covid-19.

Mr Newsom said the contract with PerkinElmer would allow health workers in California to test for flu and Covid-19 simultaneously at no additional cost.

GLOBAL ROUNDUP

Kenya's president extended a nationwide 9pm. Curfew for another 30 days.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has extended a nationwide curfew to contain the pandemic as the virus penetrates deeper into the East African nation.

In a speech given on Wednesday, Kenyatta said the disease was still spreading while Kenyans responsibly followed Covid-19 protocols and infections had been reduced to "manageable levels".

"The new frontier of this invisible enemy is increasingly shifting into counties and rural areas," he said.

Kenya has reported 33,016 cases and 564 deaths from the virus.

The curfew starts at 9 p.m. until 4 a.m. and is extended for a further 30 days. Mr Kenyatta said bars and nightclubs would close for another month and restaurants should close at 8 p.m. instead of 7 p.m.

Investigations into stolen funds at state medical agencies should be completed in the next three weeks, Kenyatta added. Allegations of inappropriateness last week forced public health workers to strike, sparking a serious health crisis.

Mr Kenyatta also lifted a second-hand clothing ban that the authorities introduced in late March as a precaution.

In other news from around the world:

  • South Korea 441 new cases were reported Thursday, the highest daily increase since early March. Also on Thursday, the South Korean central bank lowered the prospects for economic growth in the country and forecast a decline of 1.3 percent for 2020. That would be the worst performance since the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s.

  • India Thursday topped 60,000 deaths and reported 75,760 new cases, the highest daily increase to date. It has the third highest number of cases in the world after the US and Brazil and the fourth highest number of deaths after the US, Brazil and Mexico.

  • The World Economic Forum is postponing its annual summit in Davos, Switzerland, from January to early next summer, he announced on Wednesday. The annual meeting of the global elite in the Alps typically brings together around 3,000 of the world's most prominent executives and political leaders.

  • For the first time in three months, viral infections appear South Africa have fallen below 2,000 a day. The country recorded a high of 13,944 daily cases in July, but recorded 1,677 cases on Monday and 1,567 on Tuesday. However, as confirmed cases decline, fewer tests are being done, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said this week.

  • The Vatican announced on Wednesday that from next month Pope Francis would resume its weekly Wednesday public audience six months after the coronavirus halted the Pope's participatory events with believers.

  • Days before school starts Great BritainPrime Minister Boris Johnson said Wednesday that it was "clearly nonsensical" for students to wear face masks in class. "You can't teach with face-coverings, you can't expect people with face-coverings to learn. The most important thing is to wash your hands," said Johnson. In areas where local lockdowns exist, students and staff must wear masks in common areas wear, with the exception of classrooms where the government said "protective measures already mean the risks are lower".

  • North Korea The chairman, Kim Jong-un, has urged his government to address "flaws" and "flaws" in the fight against Covid-19, the state news media reported. The country has not reported any infections, but outside experts are skeptical, citing its run-down public health system and its proximity to China, where the virus was first discovered.

  • Local authorities have tightened restrictions in Marseille, the second largest city in Marseille Francewhere the per capita rate of cases is more than four times the national rate. According to the new rules, which start on Wednesday evening and remain in effect until at least September 30th, wearing a mask is compulsory throughout the city. Bars and restaurants in the Bouches-du-Rhône region, which also includes Marseille, will have to close overnight.

  • Phil Hogan, the influential trade commissioner for the European Union, resigned Wednesday night for violating virus guidelines during a recent dinner with lawmakers and other public figures in his native Ireland. The dinner, attended by around 80 politicians and government officials, violated a ban on large gatherings and created a feeling that those in power see themselves above the rules they impose on others. The uproar had already led to the resignation of the Irish Minister of Agriculture and the disciplining of several lawmakers.

  • The Hamas-led Ministry of Health is blocked Gaza Strip announced 21 new cases of community transmission of the virus and two virus-related deaths on Wednesday as authorities tried to contain the pandemic.

The F.D.A. approved a compact virus test that delivers results in 15 minutes.

The Food and Drug Administration has given Abbott emergency clearance for a cheap, portable coronavirus test that delivers results in 15 minutes, the company said on Wednesday.

The device is about the size of a credit card and opens like a book to reveal a small well. A doctor takes a swab from the patient's nostrils, inserts a few drops of chemicals into the hole, inserts the swab directly into the card, and rotates it.

The device, called the BinaxNOW Covid-19 Ag Card, quickly detects virus fragments in a sample, a method known as an antigen test. While such tests are faster than those based on technology known as the polymerase chain reaction, or P.C.R. they tend to miss more infections.

BinaxNOW is the fourth coronavirus antigen test to receive an emergency clearance from the F.D.A. Earlier this month, the agency approved one made by LumiraDx, a UK company.

Abbott said his new test detected viruses in 97.1 percent of people who have it and exactly no virus in 98.5 percent of people who don't.

In March the F.D.A. approved another rapid test developed by Abbott that was later found to have missed a significant number of infections.

The BinaxNOW test comes with a mobile app for iPhone and Android devices that is updated every time a person repeats it.

In a statement, the company said it would ship millions of tests starting in September, rising to 50 million per month from early October.

The test costs $ 5.

Education ROUNDUP

Courses are online in the US, but university officials are reporting an "alarming increase" anyway.

A Monopoly game, study group, and other small, off-campus apartment gatherings have quarantined more than 100 students at the University of Southern California, where health officials reported an "alarming increase" in cases in the first week of Fall, despite the Lessons are almost entirely online.

At least 43 U.S.C. According to a memo released by university health officials this week, students have had positive tests since August 16, the day before class started. At least 14 of the cases were identified by testing people with no symptoms; others were identified through contact tracing and testing of symptomatic and exposed students.

The numbers are small compared to schools like the University of Alabama, which reported more than 500 infections this week, days after classes resumed. However, given the United States' extensive prevention efforts, they were remarkable.

Lessons at U.S.C. According to Jeremy Pepper, a spokesperson for the campus, the infection rate in the Los Angeles County area was almost entirely removed and only about 700 of the school's 48,500 students are living in campus accommodation. Access to campus has been restricted and students have been instructed by the university to stay home if they can.

But because of tenancy agreements that couldn't be broken or a desire for social interaction, many students – like at other institutions across the country – have moved to apartment buildings near campus.

Earlier this month a photo of a crowded bash in a large off-campus apartment complex near the US. went viral on Reddit. However, the current surge is due to smaller, more mundane venues.

Among those currently in quarantine are three students who appear to have been infected while playing a Monopoly game and a five-person study group where at least four students tested positive, according to Dr. Kimberly Tilley, US Co-Medical Director. Student health.

"We don't hear about big parties," said Dr. Tilley. "We hear," Three girls across the hall stopped by for dinner, and the next day we went to visit some other friends at their apartment. "

The decision to evacuate when a hurricane threatens can be difficult in the best of circumstances. In the grip of a pandemic, things get even more excruciating.

As Hurricane Laura roars towards Louisiana and Texas, many people living on the storm's path, especially those with heightened vulnerability or elderly relatives who must take care of the risk of breaking the storm at home, have faced the Weigh risk of exposure to the storm virus when fleeing. Others lack the means to flee because the crater has deprived their livelihoods of the economy.

These two states were hit hard by the virus over the summer, although they have made some progress lately. Daily reports of new cases fell slightly from their July highs, according to a New York Times database. Louisiana had more virus cases per capita than any other state in the country. And Arkansas, where it looks like the storm will move inland next, is grappling with rising deaths from the virus.

Like many of his neighbors, Chris Vinn of Lake Charles, La., Was busy entering his home shortly after receiving a mandatory evacuation order. Mr Vinn, who tested positive for the virus in July, and his family decided to go but not to an evacuation center. Instead, they booked an Airbnb, which is about a three-hour drive away in Lafayette.

"We try to take safety precautions as much as possible, so we didn't want to be in a hotel full of people or run to a shelter or something," said Vinn.

Memories of another major storm, Hurricane Rita in 2005, prevented Amy L’Hoste from evacuating from Lake Charles this time. She said she did not want to repeat the horrific experience of riding that storm at her grandparents' home in Ragley, La., About 20 miles north. "I'll never forget to wake up the next morning and it looked like a war zone," she said.

By Wednesday morning, the state of Louisiana had evacuated about 900 people who did not have direct access to transportation from the Lake Charles area to other hotel rooms, mostly near Baton Rouge, according to Mike Steele, a state spokesman.

American islands in the Caribbean and Pacific, including the state of Hawaii, are among the country's most alarming virus hotspots.

For months, the geographic isolation helped to protect Hawaii, Guam and the US Virgin Islands early on. All made early mitigation efforts and were able to restrict travelers more easily than mainland states could.

But their cases are now on the rise, showing how the virus can spread quickly in places with loose restrictions, sluggish contact tracing, and widespread pressure to end the economic problems associated with lockdowns.

Inconsistent reopenings have created confusion in Hawaii, particularly Honolulu, where gyms remain open but trails and parks are closed. The restaurants in town are open, but residents are not supposed to entertain visitors at home. Hawaii is now one of the states where new cases have grown fastest in the past 14 days.

The situation on Guam, an American territory in the western Pacific, appears particularly problematic. Cases crop up in several schools, at the territorial port authority and in an emergency call center.

The US military is strongly represented in Guam and has large naval and air force bases. When the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt was hit by a virus outbreak in the spring, the ship went to Guam and hundreds of sailors were quarantined ashore.

The U.S. Virgin Islands, which recorded almost no cases in the early days of the pandemic, is currently dealing with nearly 1,000 new cases per day, making its per capita infection rates higher than several states. Authorities are closing unnecessary shops and placing residence orders, checking the temperatures of all visitors, and conducting aggressive tests on residents.

An exception to the crisis in the US islands: American Samoa, an archipelago in the Pacific, remains the only territory or state in the country without a single confirmed case.

In other news from the United States:

  • New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham's office said in a statement that indoor dining in restaurants, bars and similar establishments can resume at 25 percent of normal capacity on Saturday. Houses of worship can be used to 40 percent, from now 25 percent.

  • in the New Jersey, Governor Philip D. Murphy said Wednesday, "If the dates we are looking at stay as good as they are, he hoped indoor dining could resume before mid-September." He added that there was no set date, so "I don't put my hat on it." Theaters could reopen around the same time, he said. Gyms, however, had a fixed reopening date: Tuesday with 25 percent capacity, masks and other rules. The state's health clubs have been closed for personal training since March.

  • A group of cases in the rural area Maine This has been linked to a wedding reception held in the town of Millinocket in early August which, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, has expanded to a county jail in other parts of the state where 18 inmates and employees were infected.

  • New York CityThe mayor said Wednesday that officials stopped more than 3,000 vehicles to enter the city to encourage compliance with the state's 14-day quarantine requirement for many travelers.

  • New York's largest municipal union has a complaint against the American Museum of Natural History About the institution's plan to require employees to record possible virus symptoms in an app. The union leader described the demand as too intrusive.

The coverage was written by Katie Benner, Katrin Bennhold, Alan Blinder, Chelsea Brasted, Aurelien Breeden, Alexander Burns and Michael Cooper. Jill Cowan, Abdi Latif Dahir, Steven Erlanger, Christina Goldbaum, Lauren Hirsch, Shawn Hubler, Choe Sang-Hun, Mike Ives, Andrew Jacobs, Julia Jacobs, Isabella Kwai, Alex Lemonides, Patrick J. Lyons, Apoorva Mandavilli, Jonathan Martin, Patricia Mazzei, Jesse McKinley, Heather Murphy, Elian Peltier, Elisabetta Povoledo, Adam Rasgon, Campbell Robertson, Rick Rojas, Simon Romero, Amanda Rosa, Anna Schaverien, Mitch Smith, Matina Stevis-Gridneff, Sheryl Gay Stolberg, Eileen Sullivan, Tracey Tully , Neil Vigdor, Billy Witz, and Katherine J. Wu.

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