This is our daily update of breaking COVID-19 news for Monday, July 13th, 2020. Previous daily updates can be found here, and up-to-date statistics are here.
New York City is in Phase 3 of reopening now, which includes nail salons, tattoo parlors, and massage facilities as well as recreation like tennis and basketball courts; dog runs are also reopening. A look at preparing for the spread of coronavirus is here, and if you have lingering questions about the virus, here is our regularly updated coronavirus FAQ. Here are some local and state hotlines for more information: NYC: 311; NY State Hotline: 888-364-3065; NJ State Hotline: 800-222-1222.
Here's the latest:
- People Flying Into NY From High Infection States Now Required To Provide Information Or Face Penalties
- Cuomo Announces Specific Criteria For Schools To Reopen During Pandemic
- Coronavirus Cases Among 20-Somethings In NYC Rise
- White House Official Says To Expect Increasing COVID-19 Deaths As Trump Urges Kids Back To School
- Immigration And Privacy Advocates Seek New Law Shielding COVID-19 Contact Tracing Data From Law Enforcement
5:00 p.m. California Governor Gavin Newsom on Monday announced the state would roll back its reopening plan, closing indoor restaurants, wineries, movie theaters, zoos, card playing rooms and bars.
He also said 30 counties would have to close indoor operations for gyms, places of worship, non-essential offices, personal care services, hair salons and barbershops and malls.
“We’re going back into modification mode of our original stay at home order,” Newsom said, during a press conference.
The decisions amounted to the most aggressive steps taken by any state so far to curb outbreaks, which have engulfed most of the country. According to the New York Times' database, California was averaging more than 8,000 new cases a day as of Sunday, more than double the numbers from a month ago.
The positivity rate in the state over the previous seven days hit 8.3 percent on Sunday, the highest percentage since April, according to the Los Angeles Times.
California is among the states that meet the standards for New York's quarantine order.
Prior to Newsom's announcement, Los Angeles and San Diego unified school districts said they would reopen with online classes only, making them the largest school districts to decide against holding in-person classes at the start of the coming school year.
The two districts have a combined enrollment of roughly 825,000 students, less than New York City, which at 1.1 million children is the country's largest school district.
On Wednesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that New York City public schools would resume in-person instruction only two to three days a week, with the rest of the days filled out by online learning. Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday outlined specific health requirements for reopening schools, including each region having a daily infection rate that stays below five percent for 14 days straight.
In a joint statement, the two California school districts cited the uncertainty among experts, poor guidance as well as soaring infections.
"Unfortunately, much of the research is incomplete and many of the guidelines are vague and contradictory," the statement read. "One fact is clear: those countries that have managed to safely reopen schools have done so with declining infection rates and on-demand testing available. California has neither. The skyrocketing infection rates of the past few weeks make it clear the pandemic is not under control."
White House Official Says To Expect Increasing COVID-19 Deaths As Trump Urges Kids Back To School
Facing an alarming surge in cases affecting in 39 states across the nation, a member of the White House coronavirus task force said the number of deaths from coronavirus will rise in the coming weeks and that "everything should be on the table" when it comes to containing the outbreaks.
"Even though the death rate if you get it is going down, your chances of surviving are much better, we do expect deaths to go up," said Adm. Brett Giroir said Sunday during an interview on ABC News' This Week.
He added: "If you have more cases, more hospitalizations, we do expect to see [more deaths] over the next two or three weeks before this turns around."
Asked if it was time to consider "more stringent lockdowns," Giroir replied: "Everything should be on the table. What we model are the most important interactions, are closing bars. If you're in a red state, I mean like a red state — red meaning you have a lot of transmission, closing bars is an important thing, limiting the capacity of restaurants is an important thing, these are two measures that really do need to be done. They really do need to be done."
The sobering comments from a White House administration official came as the governor of Texas warned of a possible lockdown if cases and hospitalizations did not begin to recede and Florida set a single-day U.S. record with over 15,000 new cases.
As of Sunday, the nation had more than 3.3 million confirmed virus cases and over 135,200 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University's database. New daily cases have soared over 60,000.
At the same time, President Donald Trump and other administration officials have launched a campaign to urge states to fully reopen schools in September with in-person classes. Trump has accused Democrats of wanting to keep schools closed so as to slow economic recovery and thereby weaken his chances of winning re-election in November. But many state and local officials have expressed concerns about the lack of funding and sufficient health guidance to reopen.
During a barrage of early morning tweets on Monday, Trump retweeted a tweet by Chuck Woolery, a television game show host and conservative, that accused the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and doctors of lying about the disease.
On Sunday, Giroir, who is a pediatrician by training, said reopening schools was important for the emotional and physical health of children but he stressed the need for safety.
"And the first thing we need to do is we need to get the virus under control. When we get the virus more under control, then we can really think about how we put children back in the classroom," he said.
Contradicting Trump's criticism of the CDC guidelines last week as "very tough" and "expensive," Giroir said the agency's recommendations were "good."
Although the president and Vice President Mike Pence had announced last Wednesday that the CDC would loosen its recommendations this week, the head of the CDC later maintained that it will not be changing its guidelines this week.
Giroir backed up that claim, saying that the changes would merely be a clarification.
"The CDC guidelines tend to be a little bit academic and long, these are going to be much more concise so people can really follow them and understand them," he said.