Latest Morning Briefing Stories
Public health experts pleaded with President Donald Trump to either cancel or move his rally outdoors, but the event went on as planned. Now dozens of Secret Service agents who staffed the event are quarantined after at least two of their colleagues tested positive for the virus.
The federal government plans to withdraw support for COVID-19 testing sites located in five states by the end of this month. Trump administration officials say that operations of facilities still open will be transferred to state or local governments. Seven of those sites are in Texas, where a record number of confirmed coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are being reported.
Public health experts also say that the findings suggest people shouldn’t assume they can’t be reinfected by the virus once they had it. Scientists warn that a vaccine will need to offer longer protection than the body’s natural immune response.
In other news on the homeless crisis: Houston releases pre-pandemic statistics; D.C. will stop using a certain motel as overflow housing.
The state broke its record for the highest number of new coronavirus cases in a day, with more than 6,000 reported Monday. Over 2,000 of those came from Los Angeles County. Other California pandemic-related news is on hospitalizations, nursing homes, renters, and prisons as well.
Meanwhile, one county has run out of hospital beds because of the spike in coronavirus cases.
News outlets report on some of the key questions that scientists and doctors are trying to answer about how the virus transmits and impacts the human body. Other public health news stories related to the pandemic focus on youth suicide, alcohol use, dining out, sex in the time of COVID, mask usage and more.
Laura McQuade, the chief executive of Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, parted ways with the organization after hundreds of former and current employees signed letters complaining of abusive and unfair treatment.
Voters still turned out in person to polls in New York and Kentucky, but a surge of absentee ballots means that the races can’t be called on the same day–something that the American public may have to adjust to come the November general election.
The House Democrats are set to unveil a health care plan that focuses on increasing subsidies and negotiating powers for Medicare drug prices. But the plan falls far short of the progressive health care push that was seen earlier in the year, pre-pandemic. Although it would be dead-on-arrival in the Senate, the legislation will help Democrats anchor their election messaging.
In other administration news: President Donald Trump taps appointees to the Census Bureau; CMS creates a new Health Informatics office; and a VA telemedicine office spent nearly $39 million during the pandemic.
“You need these H-1B physicians who are willing to go to Alabama, Georgia, you know, parts of the beltway that just don’t have enough doctors,” said Mahsa Khanbabai, an attorney with the American Immigration Lawyers Association. The health care worker exemption in the order only applies to people who are caring for COVID patients or doing research on the coronavirus.
White House advisers say that President Donald Trump was joking when he told a Tulsa, Oklahoma, campaign rally: “I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.’” The president insists he was serious though. “I don’t kid. Let me just tell you. Let me make it clear,” Trump told reporters Tuesday.
Arizona on Tuesday reported a record 3,600 new infections, but President Donald Trump’s supporters still turned out to his latest campaign rally. Trump hit many of his talking points, including railing against mail-in voting and doubling-down on a racist term for COVID-19.
There have only been two days previously that the U.S. logged higher case counts than what was reported on Tuesday. Yet states continue to push forward with their plans to reopen.
Four top federal health officials — Dr. Anthony Fauci, CDC Director Robert Redfield, FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn and assistant secretary for health at HHS Brett Giroir — were grilled by lawmakers Tuesday on the state of the federal response to the coronavirus crisis.
More coronavirus news from Kansas, Iowa, South Carolina, Texas, Rhode Island, Florida, Washington, D.C., and other areas across the U.S.
New York City restaurants in particular have been hard hit by the lack of workers and the residents who are moving out. News outlets also report on the impact of the pandemic on housing, the courts and commuting in New York.
Meanwhile, the state is coping with a surge in coronavirus cases as it struggles with social distancing and mask-wearing.
A federal judge in Oakland, California, points to a “significant failure of policy and planning” at San Quentin prison, while Arizona reports more than 1,100 cases of the virus among county jail inmates, state prisoners and federal immigration detainees.