China reports zero local infections, a major turning point.
For the first time since the coronavirus crisis began, China on Thursday reported no new local infections for the previous day, a milestone in its costly battle with the outbreak that has since become a pandemic, upending daily life and economic activity around the world.
Officials said 34 new coronavirus cases had been confirmed, all involving people who had come to China from elsewhere.
In signaling that an end to China’s epidemic might be in sight, the announcement could pave the way for officials to focus more on reviving the country’s economy, which nearly ground to a halt after the government imposed travel restrictions and quarantine measures. In recent days, economic life has been resuming in fits and starts.
But China is not out of danger yet. Experts have said that it will need to see at least 14 consecutive days without new infections for the outbreak to be considered truly over. It remains to be seen whether the virus will re-emerge once daily life restarts and travel restrictions are lifted around the country.
“It’s very clear that the actions taken in China have almost brought to an end their first wave of infections,” said Ben Cowling, a professor and head of the division of epidemiology and biostatistics at Hong Kong University’s School of Public Health. “The question is what will happen if there’s a second wave, because the kind of measures that China has implemented are not necessarily sustainable in the long term.”
To contain the outbreak, the authorities shut schools and workplaces and imposed travel and quarantine restrictions on broad swaths of the population and many visitors from abroad. Since January, more than 50 million people in the central province of Hubei, including its capital, Wuhan, where the outbreak began, have been subjected to a strict lockdown.
First details of Trump’s economic package includes $500 billion for taxpayers.
The Trump administration on Wednesday broadened the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and spelled out the first details of a $1 trillion economic package, asking Congress for an infusion of $500 billion for direct payments to taxpayers and $500 billion in loans for businesses.
President Trump invoked a seldom-used wartime law that allows the government to press American industry into service to ramp up production of medical supplies. He said he would send two military hospital ships to New York and California.
He also directed federal agencies to suspend all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April as the full economic toll of the crisis began to set in around the world. And he agreed with Canada to stop all nonessential traffic across the northern border.
After weeks of playing down the outbreak, Mr. Trump appeared on Wednesday to fully embrace the scope of the calamity, saying he saw himself as a wartime president and invoking memories of the efforts made by Americans during World War II.
“Now it’s our time,” Mr. Trump said at a news conference at the White House. “We must sacrifice together because we are all in this together, and we will come through together. It’s the invisible enemy.”
Entire sectors of the American economy are shutting down, threatening to crush businesses, put millions of people out of work and forcing lawmakers to consider a vast financial bailout that would dwarf the federal government’s response to the 2008 crisis.
The scale of the problem is unlike anything Washington has faced before: The financial crisis, which sent unemployment skyrocketing to 10 percent, centered on foreclosures and the banking sector while this crisis is springing from dozens of place at once, as restaurants and movie theaters shut down, factories close and airplanes, public trains and buses run nearly empty of passengers.
Economists fear that by the time the coronavirus pandemic subsides and economic activity resumes, entire industries could be wiped out, proprietors across the country could lose their businesses and millions of workers could find themselves jobless.
Many hospitalized in the U.S. are younger adults.
American adults of all ages — not just those in their 70s, 80s and 90s — are being seriously sickened by the coronavirus, according to a report on nearly 2,500 cases in the United States.
The report, issued Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that — as in other countries — the oldest patients were at greatest risk of becoming seriously ill or dying. But of the 508 coronavirus patients known to have been hospitalized in the United States, 38 percent were notably younger — between 20 and 54. And nearly half of the 121 sickest patients studied — those who were admitted to intensive care units — were adults under 65.
“I think everyone should be paying attention to this,” said Stephen S. Morse, a professor of epidemiology at Columbia University. “It’s not just going to be the elderly….
Source Website Coronavirus Live Updates: Trump Offers Relief to Taxpayers; No New Local Cases