Dr. Anthony Fauci said Friday he wanted to “see a clear indication” that the US was “very clearly and strongly heading in the right direction” before reopening the country.
“The virus decides whether to open it or not,” said the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease on CNN. He warned that the country could “prematurely” end social distancing measures and then “you will be in the same situation again”.
Fauci said the curve of the new cases appears to be flattening as hospital stays and ventilator patients in New York declined: “We’re going in the right direction, let’s go in that direction.”
Elsewhere, travelers have been warned to stay at home around the world to mark the traditions of Good Friday and Easter weekend. Highly anticipated stimulus checks should soon reach American bank accounts. And the British leader Boris Johnson, who is not in the intensive care unit, has worried his father, but full of “relief”.
According to Johns Hopkins University’s data dashboard, the death toll in the U.S. was over 16,600 in early Friday, with more than 466,000 cases confirmed on Friday. About 26,000 Americans have recovered.
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When should the US reopen? Fauci, Trump and Pelosi weigh themselves
As the curve of the new cases appears to be flattening out, President Donald Trump said he was confident that the US could “reopen” soon.
“Hopefully we’ll open up – you can call it ‘opening’ – very, very, very, very soon, I hope,” Trump said in a press conference on Thursday. “We’re up on the hill, pretty sure we’re up on the hill,” Trump added.
Senior White House officials also suggested this week that parts of the country and the economy could be reopened by May.
House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi, however, suggested the House would not return to Washington in late April and warned Trump against acting too quickly. “I would hope that the scientific community weighs up and says,” You can’t, it will only make matters worse if you go out too early, “Pelosi told Politico.
Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, said Thursday that there was no single medical factor for the reopening, and said that this could occur at different times in different parts of the country.
“It won’t be a one size fits all,” said Fauci.
– Nicholas Wu and Ryan Miller
Fauci: antibody tests come within ‘a week or so’
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said that “a fairly large number” of antibody tests could be available in “a week or so”.
Antibody tests for the new corona virus could show who has had the virus and has recovered, which Fauci said is particularly important for people who may have been asymptomatic and don’t know they had the virus. Fauci said the tests will be important to develop a strategy to determine who is at risk of re-infection.
“This would be important for healthcare workers, front-row fighters,” Fauci said on Friday morning on CNN.
After the test becomes more widespread, it is possible for Americans to carry “certificates of immunity,” said Fauci.
“It’s one of those things we talk about when we want to make sure we know who the vulnerable people are and not. This is being discussed. I think it could actually have some value in certain circumstances.”
However, Fauci warned that other countries were “burned” by antibody tests, saying that they must be validated, consistent, and accurate.
However, once the antibody tests become widespread, tests will be run in parallel to determine who currently has the coronavirus, Fauci said.
Stimulus checks: when will we see them?
The Americans have received conflicting information about when they will receive stimulus checks due to the economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. But there is good news: checks will soon go into their bank accounts.
According to Lisa Greene-Lewis, auditor at TurboTax, the first wave of stimulus payments of $ 1,200 is planned for the week of April 13. The government is prioritizing the first wave of payments in the coming weeks for low-income Americans and social security holders, Greene-Lewis says.
Some Americans have been confused in recent weeks after conflicting reports from various corners of the government. The IRS announced at the end of March that the distribution of economic payments would begin within three weeks.
Then Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on April 2 that the first stimulus payments for some would be made by direct payment within two weeks. Larry Kudlow, chief economic advisor to President Donald Trump, then said this week that the checks could run out this week or next. Others said they could have come on April 9th.
The IRS did not respond to requests for comments.
– Jessica Menton
Good Friday, Easter weekend: celebrate at home
People around the world have started watching Good Friday from the safety of their homes when politicians and public health officials have warned that hard-won achievements against the pandemic should not be jeopardized by a casual social detachment on Easter weekend. Throughout Europe, where Easter is one of the busiest travel times, the authorities have put up roadblocks and otherwise discouraged family celebrations.
Amid widespread restrictions on public gatherings, major religious denominations hold virtual services where members can watch on TV or online. Others arrange prayers in drive-in cinemas where people can stay in their cars.
Other churches plan to continue worship services, particularly in states like Texas, where the governor declared religious assemblies “essential services”. A church in Houston has installed hand washing stations and redesigned its 1,000-person sanctuary to accommodate about 100 people at least 2 meters apart.
Pope Francis will celebrate the Easter Mass in an almost empty St. Peter’s Basilica instead of in the huge square outside. In England, the Archbishop of Canterbury will deliver his Easter sermon on video.
– Associated Press
With more cases than any other country, New York State sees the deadliest day
As of Friday, 159,937 cases of coronavirus were known in New York. Spain had 157,022 confirmed cases and Italy had 143,626.
New York reported 799 record-breaking deaths for the third day in a row. More than 7,000 people have died in the state, which is almost half of the US casualties.
“This is so shocking and painful and breathtaking that I don’t even have the right words for it,” said Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York on Thursday.
But he added that there are hopeful signs, including a slowdown in the number of people admitted to the hospital, ICU and ventilated.
Boris Johnson’s father says his son needs time to recover from the corona virus
Prime Minister Boris Johnson must “rest” before returning to work after being transferred from the intensive care unit to a regular medical center, the British leader’s father said in an interview on Friday.
Johnson’s 79-year-old father Stanley said he was “extremely grateful” for his son’s improving condition.
“Relief is the right word,” he said in a BBC radio interview. But he warned that his son needed a recovery period before returning to work.
“He has to take his time. I can’t believe you can walk away and go straight back to Downing Street and pick up the reins without having to readjust,” he said.
Johnson is the first major global market leader known to be infected with the corona virus. In a series of video messages posted on social media before he was hospitalized with the disease, Johnson seemed increasingly uncomfortable as he continued to work in isolation in his official residence and office in Downing Street.
– Kim Hjelmgaard
Magic Johnson talks about HIV, misconceptions about coronaviruses and effects on the black community
“The reason I’m still alive is early detection,” retired NBA player Magic Johnson said on CNN Thursday. “I had a test and a physical. It turned out that I had HIV and it saved my life.”
Johnson still drew parallels between HIV and COVID-19 due to the similarities in misconceptions about the viruses, insufficient testing, lack of medication available, and how the pandemic hurt the black community.
“African Americans are leaders in coronavirus deaths and most of them in hospital are African Americans,” said Johnson. “We, as African Americans, have to do a better job of following social distance, staying at home, and making sure we.” Raise our loved ones and family members and do what we should to keep safe and sound.
“If you add that up, we have no access to medical care and quality health care. So many of us are not insured. That creates a problem. Just like with HIV and AIDS.” Read more here.
– Mark Medina
Utah tourism is impacted by the closure of the last Big Five National Park
The last of the Big Five state parks in Utah closed on Thursday, closing a tourism industry that pumped a record $ 9.75 billion into the state’s economy in 2018.
Governor Gary Herbert announced the closure of Capitol Reef National Park two days after Bryce Canyon National Park closed and less than a week after Zion National Park closed. Arches and Canyonlands National Parks closed on March 27th.
A report by the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute at the University of Utah last November showed a 6.5% increase in tourism spending compared to 2017, sales of nearly $ 10 billion and a record visit of more than 10 million people in the United States National parks.
The decision to close national parks was left to individual parks, according to the National Park Service.
– Lexi Peery, The Spectrum & Daily News (St. George, Utah)
Democrats block $ 250 billion for small businesses, citing hospital needs
Republican Senate efforts to replenish a small business emergency fund hit by the coronavirus crisis have been blocked by Democrats, who called it a “political stunt” that ignores hospitals and other pressing needs.
Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Had proposed a law that would add another $ 250 billion to the popular paycheck protection program in addition to last month’s pandemic response known as the CARES law of $ 2.2 trillion approved Congress increased by $ 349 billion.
But when there was a vote on Thursday, Maryland Democratic Sens protested. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen effectively blocked it. The bill “wasn’t negotiated so it wouldn’t get ready,” Cardin said.
Studies indicate that the Corona virus that is widespread in New York comes from Europe
The corona virus spread to New York in February and came to the region via travelers from Europe. Two separate teams of scientists studying the genetics of the virus came to similar conclusions: people spread the virus to New York weeks before the first confirmed case.
The first case of the new corona virus confirmed in New York came on March 1st. On January 31, President Donald Trump said he would restrict entry from China to the United States. On March 11, Trump said he was restricting travel from Europe.
– Ryan W. Miller
More corona virus news and information from the US TODAY
IMF chief warns of the worst global recession since the depression
The head of the International Monetary Fund said on Thursday that the coronavirus pandemic would drive the world economy into the deepest recession since the Great Depression, and the poorest countries would do the worst. This marks a dramatic turn towards a year of economic growth.
Three months ago, the IMF forecast per capita income growth for 160 countries. The organization now anticipates that per capita income will decrease in more than 170 countries. Emerging and low-income countries in Africa, Latin America and much of Asia are at high risk, said IMF managing director Kristalina Georgieva.
“Given the initially weak health systems, many face the terrible challenge of fighting the virus in densely populated cities and poverty-stricken slums where social distance is hardly an option,” said Georgieva.
African countries have raised the alarm because they do not have access to medical devices that could potentially make them susceptible to the virus.
Dozens of American Airlines flight crew members test positive for corona virus
The unions representing professional pilots and flight attendants say that dozens of them who work for American Airlines have tested positive for the corona virus and need better protection.
One hundred flight attendants from the airline had COVID-19 on Saturday, the association of professional flight attendants said. In a statement, Julie Hendrick, the new president of AFPA, said the union has been pushing Americans to take protective measures for front workers since January.
On Thursday, Captain Dennis Tajer, spokesman for the union representing American Airlines pilots, told the US TODAY that 41 of them tested positive for the virus.
Because flight crews could be vectors for the virus, Tajer said they should “be given first aid status and priority for protective equipment.”
– Rasha Ali and Jayme Deerwester
More corona virus news from the US TODAY
Contributors: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared in the US TODAY: Corona Virus Update: Good Friday, Easter at Home; Stimulus checks?