What is Coronavirus?

COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus causing the World Health Organization (WHO) to classify this outbreak as a pandemic on March 11, 2020. Symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Anyone experiencing emergency signs such as difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or bluish lips or face should immediately seek medical attention.

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What You Should Know

Older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person and the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The CDC urges citizens to monitor your health and practice social distancing. Social distancing means staying out of crowded places, avoiding group gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible.

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Coronavirus Articles

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Recent 2020

Good News for Small Businesses as Senate Passes PPP Reform Bill
CNBC  |  June 4, 2020

Business owners who received a forgivable loan through the Paycheck Protection Program are likely getting more leeway on how to spend those funds. The Senate passed legislation Wednesday night that restructures how entrepreneurs can use loans issued through a new federal relief program for small businesses ailing from the economic contagion unleashed by the coronavirus pandemic. Many business owners have called on Congress to update the Paycheck Protection Program as they struggle to meet its terms and fear they may be forced to take on debt even as their businesses haven’t fully recovered.

Federal Update: Nearly 43 Million Americans Have Filed for Unemployment During Pandemic, CDC Director Continues to Work With WHO, Poll Finds Majority of Americans Expect a Second Wave
June 4, 2020

More than a quarter of the labor force - 42.6 million people - has now claimed benefits since the pandemic began ravaging the U.S. labor market. Another 1.9 million workers filed for initial unemployment aid last week, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Claims again fell from the previous week, a trend that has held for the past 10 weeks, ever since first-time claims peaked at 6.9 million in the last week of March. Continuing claims, which count people who have filed benefits for at least two weeks in a row, stood at 21.5 million. This number unexpectedly increased slightly from the week prior.

The director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the agency continues “to have a close collaboration” with the World Health Organization (WHO), despite a recent announcement from President Trump that he was terminating the U.S. relationship. Dr. Robert Redfield said during a House Appropriations hearing on the COVID-19 response that the CDC has been working with WHO as recently as the last few days. “I feel confident that the public health partnership that we have — although it may be modified in some way at a political level — I don't think it's going to be modified in terms of our public health efforts,” Redfield added.

More than two-thirds, or 69%, of surveyed Americans believe there will be a second wave of the coronavirus, according to a new poll from Monmouth University. As multiple states prepare to reopen businesses and loosen shelter-in-place guidelines, 57% of people surveyed said they believe the federal government is not doing enough to help hard-hit states deal with the outbreak. The survey also indicates that respondents believe reopening decisions should be based more on health concerns rather than economic needs. More than half, or 54%, of respondents said it’s important to make sure that fewer people contract the virus, while 36% said it’s more important to prevent an economic downturn.

State Update: Privacy Fears Threaten NYC's Coronavirus Tracing Efforts, Las Vegas Casinos Reopen With New Safety Measures, Total Number of Cases in North Carolina Jump by 1,189 in 24 Hours
June 4, 2020

Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers will be asked to disclose personal information this month as part of the city’s herculean COVID-19 tracing effort — but suspicions over how the government will use that information are threatening the city’s best chance to crawl out of its coronavirus lockdown. Contact tracing requires handing over intimate personal data — including home addresses, names of friends and relations — to strangers, many of whom were only recently trained and hired to collect the information. The city expects to have 3,700 contact tracers mobilized this month, and as many as 10,000 when the effort reaches its capacity.

Las Vegas casinos reopened with The D and Golden Gate welcoming gamblers just after midnight. Dealers are wearing masks; hand sanitizer is widely available; guests and workers are having their temperature checked. Steve Hill, president and COO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, said demand is surprisingly strong with the city’s overall occupancy at 20% in spite of a number of resorts remaining closed. MGM Resorts capped its hotel occupancy at 30%, but reservations came in so fast that it decided to open the MGM Grand, in addition to Bellagio and New York, New York.

As of June 4, North Carolina health officials say there have been a total of 31,966 lab-confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state, that's up from 30,777 cases from the report made June 3. Additionally, the state reports 960 virus-related deaths. Currently, the state is reporting 659 individuals remain hospitalized.

CDC is Worried Americans Aren’t Following its Advice as the Number of U.S. Coronavirus Cases Continues to Rise
CNBC  |  June 4, 2020

CDC Director Robert Redfield said Thursday that he’s “very concerned” the agency’s public health message on the coronavirus isn’t “resonating” with the public as the number of cases continues to rise across the U.S. Testifying before the House Appropriations Committee, Redfield said he sees “a lot of people” not wearing masks in Washington, D.C., where he works, while many people do wear masks in his hometown of Baltimore. Crowds of people have been seen in recent weeks at protests, over the Memorial Day holiday and, Redfield noted, at the SpaceX launch Saturday. “We will continue to message as well we can,” he said. “We’re going to encourage people that have the ability to require to wear masks when they are in their environment to continue to do that.”

Fauci: It's Time to Think About Reopening Schools
CNN  |  June 4, 2020

The idea of keeping schools closed in the fall because of safety concerns for children might be "a bit of a reach," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Fauci noted that children tend to have milder symptoms or even no symptoms when they are infected with COVID-19. What's not yet clear is whether children get infected as frequently as adults, and whether they often pass the infection on to others. Ultimately, he said, the decision to reopen schools needs to be predicated on the level of infection in each community.