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Coronavirus Live Updates: New York’s Javits Center To Begin Treating Patients




HuffPost reporters around the world are tracking the pandemic and the measures being taken to flatten the curve of transmission.
Read the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic below. (To see the latest updates, you may need to refresh the page. All times are Eastern. For earlier updates on the pandemic, go here.) 
Pandemic Ends Nearly 10 Years Of Consistent Job Growth In The U.S. — 4/3/20, 8:52 a.m.
For the first time in nearly 10 years, the U.S. economy lost jobs in the month of March, ending a record-breaking streak of job growth, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate climbed to 4.4%, after a 50-year low of 3.5%.
The actual unemployment rate and number of job losses are even higher because the BLS report does not include the data from the past two weeks, when more and more businesses have shut down and laid off employees. Nearly 10 million Americans have applied for unemployment benefits during this period.
— Marina Fang
Prince Charles Opens New London Hospital Via Video Link  — 4/3/20, 7:20 a.m. ET
Prince Charles has officially opened a new 4,000-bed temporary hospital at a London exhibition center, after himself being diagnosed with COVID-19 in March. The National Health Service Nightingale Hospital has been built to treat coronavirus patients at the ExCel center in east London.
Speaking from his home in Scotland via video link, the prince paid tribute to workers who built the facility and frontline workers across the UK who are caring for those hit by the coronavirus outbreak. The Nightingale, named after nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale, will need an army of up to 16,000 staff in clinical and ancillary roles to keep it running.
“It is, without doubt, a spectacular and almost unbelievable feat of work in every sense, from its speed of construction – in just nine days as we’ve heard – to its size and the skills of those who have created it. An example, if ever one was needed, of how the impossible could be made possible and how we can achieve the unthinkable through human will and ingenuity,” Charles said.
— James Martin
Miami Mayor Urges Trump To Shut Airport To ‘Hotspot’ Flights — 4/3/20 — 6:30 a.m. ET
City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez on Thursday urged President Donald Trump to suspend all flights from international and domestic “COVID-19 hotspots” to Miami International Airport in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
“I have personally witnessed its speed, its spread, and its lethality among my residents in Miami, and now in the state of Florida,” Suarez wrote in an open letter to the president that he shared on Twitter.
— Lee Moran
Australian Prime Minister Tells Visitors To ‘Go Home’ — 4/3/20, 4:45 a.m. ET
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has told international visitors in Australia it’s time they returned to their usual place of residence. “As lovely as it is to have visitors to Australia, it is time – as it has been for some while – to make your way home,” the prime minister said in a press conference Friday.
His comments come as Australia’s Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy remained coy when asked if he believes the coronavirus statistics coming out of China and the U.S. “The only numbers I have total faith in are the Australian numbers,” he told media. “I’m certainly not confident that even the numbers out of the U.S. aren’t much higher than being reported because nobody else in the world has been doing testing like we have.”
At least 5,307 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Australia and 28 people have died. Read more on HuffPost Australia 
— Francesca Syrett 
New York Says Javits Center Will Begin Treating Coronavirus Patients ― 4/2/20, 6:03 p.m. ET
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday that the temporary hospital facility at the Javits Center will start treating COVID-19 patients, a change from the facility’s original plan to treat non-coronavirus illnesses spilling over from other hospitals.
“As we all know the growing coronavirus cases are threatening the capacity of our hospital system,” Cuomo said in a statement. “The original plan for Javits was that it be used to take non-COVID patients from hospitals to open up hospital beds. However, the number of COVID positive patients has increased so dramatically that it would be beneficial to the state if Javits could accept COVID positive patients.”
President Donald Trump confirmed at his Thursday briefing that he granted Cuomo’s request to convert the 2,500-bed alternate care facility into a hospital that would take in coronavirus patients. The facility is being run by the U.S. Army.
“The federal government is doing a lot of things it wasn’t anticipating it would do,” Trump said at the briefing.
― Sanjana Karanth
FDA Approves First Coronavirus Antibodies Test In U.S. — 4/2/20, 5:56 p.m. ET
The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first test for coronavirus antibodies in the U.S., the agency announced Thursday.
Unlike other coronavirus tests that search for fragments of viral genes that would indicate an ongoing infection, the antibody test can detect whether a patient has ever had exposure to the coronavirus, which would potentially give that person some immunity. Experts expect the test will help them identify people who’ve caught the virus but didn’t experience any of its telltale signs.
“If we don’t know the asymptomatic or mild cases, we won’t know if it’s killing a sizable fraction of the people who have it, or only people who have underlying conditions or are very unlucky,” Dr. Carl Bergstrom, an infectious diseases expert at the University of Washington in Seattle, told The New York Times.
— Lydia O’Connor



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Ben Carson: Donald Trump’s ‘Courageous’ Coronavirus Response Doesn’t Get Enough Credit




Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson on Thursday complained to Fox News’ Sean Hannity that President Donald Trump is not receiving enough credit for being “incredibly courageous” in his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
Carson, who is a member of the federal coronavirus task force, cited Trump’s February decision to stop foreign nationals who have recently visited China from entering the U.S. as an example of the president’s fearlessness.
However, Trump and members of his administration have been fiercely criticized for downplaying the threat of the outbreak for weeks after and for now failing to institute a nationwide lockdown to stop the spread of the virus.
Trump has also been slammed for going against World Health Organization guidelines to not use geographical descriptors in a bid to avoid stigmatization, instead calling the contagion the “Chinese virus,” and for attacking journalists and governors who question or criticize his response to the crisis.

Ben Carson says the President isn’t getting the credit for being courageous pic.twitter.com/RNYLCXG3cp— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) April 3, 2020

Twitter users pounced on retired neurosurgeon Carson’s gripe.
“Bullshit Ben Carson. Bullshit. Donald Trump isn’t courageous. He’s never ever been courageous,” tweeted former Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.), who ran an unsuccessful campaign to unseat Trump as the GOP 2020 nominee.
“He doesn’t know courage. He doesn’t understand courage,” Walsh continued. “He’s never tasted courage. He’s incapable of courage. He doesn’t even know how to spell the word courage.”
Bullshit Ben Carson. Bullshit. Donald Trump isn’t courageous. He’s never ever been courageous. He doesn’t know courage. He doesn’t understand courage. He’s never tasted courage. He’s incapable of courage. He doesn’t even know how to spell the word courage.It’s. A. Cult. https://t.co/kCItJnl5hH— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) April 3, 2020

The United States has:242,000 cases of coronavirus.5,758 dead.The virus in all 50 states. Trump sycophants are still using the “travel ban” talking point.Disaster in motion: 3.4 million travelers poured into US as coronavirus pandemic eruptedhttps://t.co/aV2aEu33hy https://t.co/Y8TP4aSd7z— Richard W. (@IceManNYR) April 3, 2020

The courage to deny, delay, deflect, and dither that we were facing a pandemic as we hit over 244k cases nationally & over 5900 deaths. He won’t get one word of credit from me. People are dying at this level because of Trump. https://t.co/zeKP9JN8d5— HawaiiDelilah™ (@HawaiiDelilah) April 3, 2020

I think he must have meant “contagious.” https://t.co/fQ8l1jznPj— Bill Child (@djmisterbill) April 3, 2020

You are so right Ben Carson. Donald Trump will never get credit for being courageous, and Sean Hannity will never get credit for being smart. https://t.co/QK6WpXqy7v— John Ducey (@JohnnyDucey) April 3, 2020

Ben Carson and other MAGA, social distancing means get your head out of Trump’s ass. #COVIDIDIOT https://t.co/zSzyOg3FCE— Denise Wu (@denisewu) April 3, 2020

pic.twitter.com/nCkEhdEgHL— Rhonda Harbison (@rhonda_harbison) April 3, 2020

Yo Ben, the president isn’t getting credit for “being courageous” because he isn’t courageous.— James Marchand (@MarchandMusic) April 3, 2020

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Andrew Yang Says Asians Need To ‘Show Our American-ness’ In Order To Avoid Racism




Andrew Yang’s name is trending on Twitter, but for many Asian Americans, something isn’t adding up.
In a Washington Post op-ed published Wednesday, the former presidential candidate, who suspended his 2020 campaign in February, attempted to address the increasing incidents of harassment and blatant racism against Asians amid the coronavirus pandemic.
In what he described as a “call to action,” the businessman argued that Asian Americans should combat coronavirus-related racism by helping to end the public health crisis, urging them to “help our neighbors, donate gear, vote, wear red white and blue, volunteer, fund aid organizations” and “demonstrate that we are part of the solution.”
“We Asian Americans need to embrace and show our American-ness in ways we never have before,” he added in the article, titled, “We Asian Americans Are Not the Virus, but We Can Be Part of the Cure.”
By late Thursday, more than 6,000 tweets had turned “Andrew Yang” into a trending name, with people criticizing the former presidential hopeful for suggesting that the burden should be on Asian people in the United States to prove that they deserve to be in the country.
This is not it, Andrew.It shouldn’t be on Asians to prove we’re American by sacrifice. That hasn’t protected us before and won’t now.We prove we’re American by fighting things that should be un-American, like racism—and not just when it happens to us.https://t.co/0OsmxeO2oh— Jeff Yang (@originalspin) April 2, 2020

andrew yang, wearing “red white and blue” isn’t going to stop people from being racist when they see me. do you think the guy who harasses me on the street cares about community work we’ve done? want us to hand out resumes while we’re being told to “go back to china”? fuck off— Ashley Oh (@itsashleyoh) April 2, 2020

The op-ed opens with an anecdote about how Yang felt last week when a man outside a grocery store gave him an “accusatory” look. 
“I felt self-conscious — even a bit ashamed — of being Asian,” the entrepreneur wrote, explaining that he had occasionally felt this way growing up and that it was “the first time in years” the feeling had gotten to him.
By and large, Yang said, he has remained unfazed by microaggressions. But because the coronavirus has led to a major spike in “physical and verbal abuse” against Asian Americans, along with an increase in Asians requesting counseling services, Yang said that “things have changed.”
“We all know why. The coronavirus is devastating communities and lives. People’s livelihoods and families are being destroyed. And people are looking for someone to blame,” the former tech executive wrote.
“I obviously think that being racist is not a good thing. But saying ‘Don’t be racist toward Asians’ won’t work,” he continued.
Instead, Yang argued, Asian Americans should be the ones who prove to the rest of the United States that they really are Americans.
“We should show without a shadow of a doubt that we are Americans who will do our part for our country in this time of need,” he wrote.
In other words, as many people on Twitter summarized, Asians should keep their heads down and focus on assimilation, or the idea that immigrants and people of color need to adapt to white America to be accepted.
ah you’re right andrew yang, it’s up to us asian diaspora to perform patriotism for the bare minimum human right of not being beaten and stabbed in broad daylight. gah. fighting back? poc unity? white accountability? WHAT WAS I THINKING????? pic.twitter.com/AZRxeLzZWx— gerrnard sanders, phd (@gerrieyaki) April 2, 2020

Andrew Yang says to combat racism, it’s on us Asian Americans “to embrace and show our American-ness in ways we never have before.”1. It’s not.2. For generations, we’ve been asked to “prove our American-ness,” yet we continue to be seen as “other.” https://t.co/BU94bVWWbf— Marina Fang (@marinafang) April 2, 2020

In the op-ed, Yang seemingly showed sympathy toward people who look at Asians and associate them immediately with the coronavirus, saying, “People are hurting.”
“They look up and see someone who is different from them, whom they wrongly associate with the upheaval of their way of life,” he added.
“It shouldn’t be on Asians to prove we’re American by sacrifice,” one Twitter user pointed out. “We prove we’re American by fighting things that should be un-American, like racism — and not just when it happens to us.”
“Do you think the guy who harasses me on the street cares about community work we’ve done?” another user wrote. 
One person criticized Yang for saying Japanese Americans during World War II “volunteered for military duty at the highest possible levels to demonstrate that they were Americans” as part of his argument.
“This rhetoric is extremely dangerous and takes me back to the WWII camps, when Japanese Americans were encouraged to display their patriotism as a response to being treated like prisoners,” the person wrote on Twitter.
As Asian Americans, it’s not our job to prove our Americanness. This rhetoric is extremely dangerous and takes me back to the WWII camps, when Japanese Americans were encouraged to display their patriotism as a response to being treated like prisoners. https://t.co/vKsrIwQo06— Taylor Weik (@taylorweik) April 2, 2020

Still others said Yang’s op-ed failed to address the role that oppression has had on Asians in the United States.
on the yang op-ed1. AAPI, a marginalized community, should not have to prove loyalty and be forced to assimilate due to racism. this is essentially making demands of the oppressed, not the oppressor. this is letting those in power off the hook, no consequences. pic.twitter.com/Lr3SiDRiwR— Kimmy (@kimmythepooh) April 2, 2020

Andrew Yang thinks the way to eliminate racism against Asian Americans is for Asian Americans to be “more American.” I’ve said it before, this man was the whitest candidate running https://t.co/Dhf6F1yn6A— Studio Glibly (@NoTotally) April 2, 2020

Throughout his presidential run, Yang was often rebuked for playing up harmful stereotypes about Asians and Asian Americans, from adopting “MATH” — or “Make America Think Harder” — as his campaign slogan to implying he knows a lot of doctors because of his race at a cringeworthy presidential debate.
Since the end of his campaign, Yang has transitioned into his new role as a political commentator for CNN and plans to launch a weekly podcast with the Cadence13 network about public policy, technology and social issues, called “Yang Speaks.”
Though it’s all fine and great that Yang has chosen to remain in the spotlight, especially since national media is lacking in people of color, his op-ed for The Washington Post isn’t doing Asian Americans any favors in the acceptance and inclusion department — and it’s certainly not “part of the solution.”

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Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Climb To 1 Million Worldwide




The number of confirmed cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, across the world has surpassed 1 million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
More than 51,000 people have died from the disease and at least 208,000 have recovered from it.
The United States surpassed China, where the first known infection was documented in December, as the country with the most confirmed cases of the virus on March 26. There are more than 236,000 confirmed cases in the U.S., with over 48,000 in New York City alone. At least 5,600 people nationwide have died from COVID-19.
As the virus continues to spread across the U.S., China has reported few new infections locally in recent weeks after imposing extreme social distancing measures for two months. The country said last week that it plans to ease its restrictions in Wuhan, the initial epicenter of the pandemic, on April 8.
Several European countries, including Italy, Spain, France and Germany, have become some of the areas hardest hit by the virus. Italy has reported the highest number of COVID-19 deaths in the world at more than 13,900.
In the Middle East, Iran has by far the most confirmed cases of any country in the region with more than 50,000. Israel has reported at least 6,800 cases.
There are an estimated 7.8 billion people on Earth, which means at least .01% of the world’s population is now known to have the virus. Public health experts have warned, however, that the number could be higher, citing testing shortages in some areas and people who may be asymptomatic and unaware they are infected.

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Journalist Has Emotional Reunion With Young Son After Quarantine And 49 Days Apart




Janis Mackey Frayer, a foreign correspondent for NBC News, received “the. best. hug. ever” this week.
The journalist had been on the front lines covering the coronavirus outbreak in Japan, the United Kingdom and China. When she finally returned to her home in Beijing after five weeks of travel, she was informed that she had to self-quarantine for 14 days. Her young son and her husband, Kevin, had to temporarily move out and stay in another apartment while she did so.
Due to the quarantine, travel and other restrictions, she didn’t see her family for 49 days.
On Wednesday, NBC News captured the heartwarming moment Frayer finally got to reunite with her son (see the video above).
In the video, you can see Frayer’s son excitedly jumping up and down once he sees his mother.
“Mommy! Mommy, hurry up!” he yells as she runs to him wearing a face mask.
With work travel, restrictions and quarantine in #China, our family was apart for 49 days. And yes, every one of them was hard — the worry, the decisions, the failed plans, isolation. Our little guy has been brave and resilient… and this was easily the best. hug. ever. @NBCNews pic.twitter.com/UhxqYvFSl7— Janis Mackey Frayer (@janisfrayer) April 1, 2020

Frayer posted about the experience to her social media accounts. On Instagram, she noted that every one of those 49 days was “hard.”
“The worry, the decisions, the failed plans, the isolation,” she wrote.

“Throughout it, this little guy has been brave and sweet and resilient, and I have missed him more than I could possibly say,” she wrote. “Trust that this was easily the. best. hug. ever.”

On March 22, Frayer posted a photo of her apartment door on Instagram. The picture was taken after she finally returned home, and shows two signs.
“Top: from the boy who melts our hearts,” she wrote. “Below: from the quarantine authorities saying that I cannot set foot outside of the apartment for 14 days.”

She explained that while in quarantine she was allowed to order food and supplies “and one of the building staff will deliver and drop at the door.”
The isolation seemed to be grueling for Frayer. On March 23, she posted a video on Instagram that shows her husband and son calling to her from the street while she blows them kisses from her apartment window.

“When you’re in quarantine in #Beijing, and you can’t leave the house, and you haven’t seen or hugged your family since way-too-long-ago,” she wrote alongside the video. “And then you get a phone call to go to the window… and oof, your heart.”

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Kanye West’s High School Art Valued At Thousands Of Dollars On ‘Antiques Roadshow’




Your high school art projects? Worth about $1. Kanye West’s high school art projects? Worth thousands.Artwork created by the rapper back when he attended Polaris High School in Chicago was appraised at $16,000 to $23,000 on an “Antiques Roadshow” episode that aired this week.In April 2019, West’s first cousin’s husband brought a large collection of West’s work for collectibles expert Laura Woolley to appraise during a taping of the PBS series at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona.“My husband is Kanye West’s first cousin. When Kanye’s mother passed away in 2007, my husband received them as part of the estate about a year after she passed,” he explained while standing beside only a small part of the collection.The five works highlighted included pieces done with graphite, gouache and scratchboard techniques. The collection also featured a flyer for West’s first known art showing from 1995. “This flyer is really interesting because it gives the full background of his entire artistic training up until that point,” says Woolley in the clip above. “I have to say he has a very impressive resume having attended the Hyde Park Art Academy at age 4, the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago State University [and] Nanjing University in the People’s Republic of China.”
Woolley then notes that by age 17, when West was at the Polaris School, he had “already been studying at these extraordinary artistic institutions, and my favorite part of this flyer is actually the very end” ― where there’s a passing reference to his work in music “as well.”
West’s cousin-in-law explains that the star’s late mother, Donda West, was the reason he was so well-trained.
“She traveled all around the world and he went everywhere with her,” the cousin-in-law says, adding: “His mother pushed him to do anything that he wanted to do and made sure that it was available for him.”
Woolley offered a measured appraisal, telling West’s cousin-in-law that while the rapper is “a controversial figure with his opinions and his career, I don’t think anyone can deny the fact that he has extraordinary talent and I think that, in time, I would expect these to continue to appreciate.”
“To have early pieces like this from someone who really will be an important cultural figure of our time I think is really fantastic,” she says. 

Woolley valued the largest piece at about $6,000 to $8,000 and other smaller works ranging from $2,000 to $7,000 each.
“Altogether, just for this grouping, $16,000 to $23,000 at auction,” she says.
You can watch the entire exchange above.



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New England Patriots Jet Brings 1.2 Million N95 Masks From China




The New England Patriots’ air game is better than ever.
The team jet picked up 1.2 million N95 masks in Shenzhen, China, Thursday to bring back to Massachusetts for the state’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic, according to Boston.com and The Wall Street Journal.
The plane, dispatched by team owner Robert Kraft and his son, team president Jonathan Kraft, was permitted on the tarmac for just a few hours so workers in full-body suits could load the equipment.
Gov. Charlie Baker tweeted a photo of the aircraft and wrote: “No days off. Thanks to some serious teamwork, Massachusetts is set to receive over 1 million N95 masks for our front-line workers. Huge thanks to the Krafts and several dedicated partners for making this happen.”
No days off. Thanks to some serious teamwork, Massachusetts is set to receive over 1 million N95 masks for our front-line workers. Huge thanks to the Krafts and several dedicated partners for making this happen. pic.twitter.com/ieV6XMC5Ow— Charlie Baker (@MassGovernor) April 2, 2020

“In today’s world, those of us who are fortunate to make a difference have a significant responsibility to do so with all the assets we have available to us,” Kraft told The Wall Street Journal.
The governor had struck an acquisition deal with Chinese manufacturers weeks ago but couldn’t arrange for the transfer of the masks, the Journal reported. In stepped a friend, Jonathan Kraft, who’s also the chairman of the board of Massachusetts General Hospital, to help arrange for the team plane to become a cargo carrier.
The National Guard was to transport the supplies to a stockpile in Marlborough. 
Massachusetts has reported more than 7,700 coronavirus cases and at least 122 deaths, according to the state’s website. But not all the masks are headed to the state’s medical facilities.
Baker pledged to send 300,000 to New York, the country’s COVID-19 epicenter, the Journal wrote.

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Fauci Suggests Need For National Lockdown As More States Issue Stay-At-Home Orders




As more U.S. states issue stay-at-home orders and the federal government recommends a 30-day period of social distancing, Dr. Anthony Fauci on Thursday suggested the need for a national lockdown, while acknowledging he does not have the authority to order one.
Nearly 40 U.S. states now have some form of a stay-at-home executive order, mandating the closure of nonessential businesses and encouraging residents to remain indoors unless absolutely necessary. But some states have been slower than others to implement the orders. They can vary highly from state to state, like exempting certain businesses and gatherings or making the orders only for certain counties rather than statewide, and they have varying degrees of enforceability. Some businesses have tried to skirt the orders by claiming their workers are “essential.”
NBC “Today” show host Savannah Guthrie asked Fauci in a Thursday interview if a national lockdown would be more effective “than this hodgepodge, piecemeal method.” Fauci, the country’s top infectious diseases official and a major fixture in the U.S. coronavirus response, agreed.
But he noted that states still have significant leeway “to make their own decision” in this situation and questioned some of the stay-at-home exemptions they’re allowing.
“I can’t make any official proclamations here, but I can say: Really seriously consider, are those exemptions appropriate when you think about what’s going on?” Fauci said. “And I urge the people of the leadership at the state level to really take a close look at those kinds of decisions.”
“Shouldn’t there be a national order, a national lockdown (rather than what we have now)?” -@savannahguthrie“In our country, there still is that issue of central government vs. the ability and the right of a state to make their own decision… Again, I agree with you.” -Fauci pic.twitter.com/976rqiVRL8— TODAY (@TODAYshow) April 2, 2020

Fauci also said he agreed with the U.S. surgeon general’s assessment that the federal government’s new recommendations that Americans stay home and restrict activity for 30 days “amount to a national stay-at-home order.”
“That’s essentially what it is,” Fauci said. “This is inconvenient from an economic and a personal standpoint, but we just have to do it. That is our major weapon against this virus right now. We don’t have a vaccine that’s deployable. This is the only thing we have.”
To slow the spread of the virus, several countries — including China, Italy, Spain, France and India — have implemented some form of a national lockdown.
On Wednesday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), who leads the state with the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., acknowledged that a stringent lockdown like China’s would be impossible.
“If you have the same compliance that you had in Wuhan — Wuhan basically just locked up society — I don’t even know that if the federal government enacted the Wuhan model that the American people would comply,” he said during his daily press conference.
President Donald Trump, who has repeatedly praised his own disastrous response by trying to erase his earlier attempts to downplay the pandemic, has yet to issue a national stay-at-home order, despite calls from public health experts.
He initially suggested the state-level stay-at-home orders, business and travel restrictions and social distancing guidelines could be lifted as soon as April 12, claiming the country would be “raring to go by Easter.” He even suggested large gatherings in churches to celebrate the holiday — even though these are the kinds of events public health officials have warned against, given the potential for spreading the virus.
Earlier this week, Trump reversed course, saying that public health officials now recommend at least 30 days of restrictions.
On Thursday, Fauci said Trump is also considering a ban on domestic travel, but “no decision has been made.”
“We look at that literally every day,” he said on “CBS This Morning.” “It really depends on what city you’re talking about and from where you are coming. So this is something that you’re absolutely correct is on the table, and is discussed.”
Dr. Fauci on President Trump considering banning domestic travel: “We look at that literally every day. It really depends on what city you’re talking about and from where you are coming. So this is something that you’re absolutely correct is on the table and is discussed.” pic.twitter.com/BZVao1U09V— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) April 2, 2020

Many states have reported new COVID-19 cases stemming from interstate travel, such as people fleeing a state with a growing number of cases and then traveling to another, therefore potentially spreading the virus and overwhelming hospital capacity in areas with fewer medical resources.
Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx, who both serve on Trump’s coronavirus task force, said Tuesday that new models project the virus could kill between 100,000 and 240,000 Americans.

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Official Coronavirus Figures Don’t Reveal The True Scale of the Pandemic




At a news conference every evening, Jérôme Salomon, France’s director general of health, solemnly delivers an update on the state of the coronavirus epidemic in the country — just as public health officials around the world have been doing every day for weeks.
With each new tally of deaths and infections, news organizations and public health institutions like Johns Hopkins University in Maryland update their maps and charts depicting the pandemic’s severity and spread. The latest figures show that more than 13,000 people have died in Italy, the epicenter of the outbreak in Europe, followed by Spain and France. In the United States, the coronavirus has now killed more people than the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Last week, however, Salomon’s terminology changed slightly. Rather than simply relaying the total number of deaths in France, as he had been doing, he specified that the daily tally reflected only deaths that had been recorded in hospitals.
The official figures “represent only a small part of deaths” in France, Salomon admitted. He acknowledged that “the two main places of death are the hospital and nursing homes.” A system for tallying deaths in nursing homes is planned for the coming days, but it is not yet operational.
“The absolute numbers would no doubt be effectively much higher if we aggregated what is happening in retirement homes, as well as the people who die at home or who are not counted,” Frederic Valletoux, president of the French Hospitals Federation, said last week.
Over the weekend, French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe acknowledged that concerns have been growing about the accuracy of the government’s coronavirus data.
“A lot of our fellow citizens are asking themselves questions about these figures, wanting to know how they are calculated, if they are comprehensive, which are fact and which are estimates,” Philippe said, adding that such questions were “warranted.”
The situation is similar in many countries — including the United States, where it has been difficult to obtain a complete picture of the scale of the epidemic. States and counties report their own figures, providing individual snapshots of the virus’s spread, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tracks cases at the state level. Other organizations, such as Johns Hopkins, have attempted to provide more detailed counts by aggregating information from various sources, including federal, state, and local officials.
Even the most comprehensive tallies likely omit large numbers of people who may be sick but have not been tested for COVID-19, because tests are not available, their symptoms are too mild to qualify for a test, or they do not yet display any symptoms.
In Spain, as in France, deaths in retirement homes are also not included in the official statistics. According to the newspaper El Pais, however, at least 352 people have died from the coronavirus in nursing homes in Spain.
“It is plausible that deaths are underestimated,” Silvio Brusaferro, the president of Italy’s Higher Institute of Health, said this week. “We report deaths that are signaled with a positive swab. Many pneumonia-related deaths, presumably from COVID — for example in long-term care nursing homes — are not tested with a swab.”
Brusaferro said that public health officials in Italy were working to develop a more precise way to track the number of deaths in the country.
Last week, Angelo Borrelli, the head of Italy’s Civil Protection Service, suggested that the number of coronavirus infections also was far higher than the number officially reported. “A ratio of one certified case out of every 10 is credible,” Borrelli told la Repubblica.
Scientists and public health officials interviewed by HuffPost Italy agreed with Borrelli’s assessment, but cautioned against trying to come up with a specific estimate for the total number of cases. 
“I mean, numbers are underestimated, but we don’t know the full extent at this time. It’s impossible to establish it with certainty,” Walter Ricciardi, a member of the World Health Organization and a scientific adviser to the Italian government, told HuffPost Italy. 

THOMAS SAMSON via Getty Images

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe speaks, flanked by French Director General of Health Jerome Salomon, as he announces new measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, on March 14, 2020, in Paris.

In the United Kingdom, as well, hospital deaths have been the only coronavirus-related fatalities reflected in the official daily figures. This week, however, the government announced that it would begin publishing a weekly death toll based on registrations rather than just hospital reports. This means anyone who dies outside of a hospital will be included if a doctor or coroner, for example, notes COVID-19 as a factor in their death. 
Even with improved reporting, however, the lack of widespread testing in many countries, combined with discrepancies in how infections are tallied, may make it difficult to truly understand the scale of the pandemic.
For example, in the U.K., the daily government figures on the number of infections indicate the results of tests as they come in, rather than the date when someone was tested because they were displaying symptoms of coronavirus.
This has led to large variations in the reported infection rates day to day that don’t reflect how the virus is actually spreading.
Sheila Bird, a biostatistician who previously worked for the Medical Research Council at the University of Cambridge, told HuffPost UK she believed the government should start reporting infection rates detected in hospital-based tests that reflect when samples were collected, rather than daily test outcomes, as this would give a far more accurate idea of the spread of the virus.
“It’s important that we know the sample week — not the week the test was reported, but the week the sample was taken from the patient,” Bird said. “It’s this date that characterizes the state of the epidemic.”
In the United States, it can take anywhere from 24 hours to 10 days to get the results of the test, depending on the lab and how backed up it is.
Adding to these challenges is the fact that scientists are learning more every day about how the coronavirus spreads. Recent studies in China and the U.S. suggest that a large number of infections are caused by people who display no symptoms of coronavirus.
On Tuesday, Robert Redfield, the director of the U.S. CDC, said in an interview with NPR that as many as one in four cases do not have symptoms.
“That’s important, because now you have individuals that may not have any symptoms that can contribute to transmission, and we have learned that in fact they do contribute to transmission,” Redfield said.
Additionally, Redfield said, the research suggests that people who do become symptomatic may be able to spread the virus up to 48 hours before they show symptoms.
“This helps explain how rapidly this virus continues to spread across the country,” he said.
With reporting from HuffPost France, HuffPost UK, HuffPost Spain, HuffPost Italy, and Reuters.

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Lou Dobbs: Health Experts Not Recognizing Donald Trump’s ‘Leadership’




Lou Dobbs’ unabashed worship of President Donald Trump during the coronavirus pandemic went up another notch on Wednesday. (See the video above.)
The Fox Business host complained that health experts aren’t acknowledging the president’s “leadership” in fighting the crisis, and that “the left” condemns  Trump for saving lives.
In an interview with the far-right Gatestone Institute’s Gordon Chang on “Lou Dobbs Tonight,” the host lauded Trump’s travel restrictions from China to try to fend off the outbreak earlier this year, echoing a talking point that Trump himself uses to defend his slow response to the crisis. 
Dobbs also parroted Trump’s unsubstantiated claim that the restriction reduced the U.S. death toll substantially, and that Trump defied health experts in imposing the limitation (a claim that has been disproven). 
“We should point out that the president put that travel ban into place against the judgment of many of his top public health experts who advise him every day, he did so then, he saved ― I think thousands of lives, as a result ― and certainly gave us an opportunity at least to begin to react to this crisis,” Dobbs said. “He also meets public condemnation from the left because he wants the stay-at-home order in place, he wants to be certain that we are saving American lives.
“He has been proved right at every point. And yet there is no acknowledgment of that from the left … (or) an appropriate acknowledgment by our public health experts to what his leadership has meant for this country.”
Dobbs conveniently left out the president’s early blunders in failing to confront the virus. Trump reportedly ignored intelligence on the looming threat, called criticism a Democratic “hoax” and predicted it would disappear by April.

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