Covid19 News

Coronavirus Live Updates: In California, 40 Million Ordered to Stay Home


America’s most populous state is ordering its residents to stay at home.

Gov. Gavin Newsom of California on Thursday ordered Californians — all 40 million of them — to stay at home as much as possible in the coming weeks as the state confronts the escalating coronavirus outbreak. The order represents the most drastic measure any governor has taken to control the virus, and a decision that Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York, which has far more cases than in California, has resisted taking.

Mr. Newsom made the announcement from the state’s emergency operations center in Sacramento, normally a place where emergency workers coordinate responses to wildfires and earthquake, and spoke in stark terms of the risk the virus poses to the population.

Citing a model that state planners have been using, suggesting that 56 percent of Californians, or more than 25 million people, could be infected over eight weeks, Mr. Newsom said, “I think it’s time I tell you what I tell my family.”

“This is not a permanent state, this is a moment in time,” he said. “We will look back at these decisions as pivotal.”

Earlier in the week several counties in the Bay Area, plus Sacramento, issued orders that residents essentially shelter in place, although there are several exceptions — which also apply to the state order — such as going to buy groceries or picking up prescriptions.

The governor’s order came as cases in the United States surged past 10,000 on Thursday, prompting sweeping action from several other state leaders who had previously been reluctant to order imposing changes to daily life.

In Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott declared a public health disaster for the first time since 1901 and issued an executive order stopping dine-in service at restaurants and bars. The order also called for closing schools, and a ban on gatherings of more than 10 people statewide.

Florida’s southernmost county, which includes the Keys, ordered on Thursday all of its hotel to close. The move, at the height of the state’s tourist season, is expected to deal a severe blow to the local economy.

A global arms race for a coronavirus vaccine is underway.

In the three months since the virus began its deadly spread, China, Europe and the United States have all set off at a sprint to become the first to produce a vaccine. But while there is cooperation on many levels — including among companies that are ordinarily fierce competitors — hanging over the effort is the shadow of a nationalistic opportunity for the winner to potentially gain the upper hand in dealing with the economic and geostrategic fallout from the crisis.

What began as a question of who would get the scientific accolades, the patents and ultimately the revenues from a successful vaccine is suddenly a broader issue of urgent national security. And behind the scramble is a harsh reality: Any new vaccine that proves potent against the coronavirus — clinical trials are underway in the United States, China and Europe already — is sure to be in short supply as governments try to ensure that their own people are the first in line.

In China, 1,000 scientists are at work on a vaccine, and the issue has already been militarized: Researchers affiliated with the Academy of Military Medical Sciences have developed what is considered the nation’s front-runner candidate for success and is recruiting volunteers for clinical trials.

President Trump has talked with pharmaceutical executives about making sure a vaccine is produced on American soil, to assure the United States controls its supplies. German government officials said they believed he tried to lure a German company, CureVac, to do its research and production, if it comes to that, in the United States.

The company has denied it received a takeover offer, but its lead investor made clear there was some kind of approach.

The epidemic is now bigger in Europe, where governments aren’t used to giving harsh orders, and citizens aren’t used to following them.

The macabre milestones keep coming. By Wednesday, Europe had recorded more coronavirus cases and fatalities than China. On Thursday, Italy — by itself — passed China in reported deaths.

While China claims to have lowered its rate of new cases essentially to zero, Europe’s numbers grow faster each day — about 100,000 confirmed infections and 5,000 deaths in all so far — suggesting that the worst is yet to come.

So how is it that the new disease, Covid-19, has hit harder in Europe, which had weeks of warning that the epidemic was coming, than in China, where the virus originated and where there are twice as many people?

To some extent, experts say, Europeans are paying a price for living in open, affluent democracies, where people are used to free movement, easy travel and…



Source Website Coronavirus Live Updates: In California, 40 Million Ordered to Stay Home

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