This is our daily update of breaking COVID-19 news for Thursday, May 14th, 2020. Previous daily updates can be found here, and up-to-date statistics are here.

Read our guide to understanding New York on PAUSE, NY's stay-at-home order; 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.


7:30 p.m. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory late Thursday about the new coronavirus-linked illness affecting children in New York and at least 16 other states.

The advisory, which goes out to state and local health officers, is the first official acknowledgement by the CDC of the condition, which the agency has termed multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C).

Unlike an alert, which conveys the highest level of importance, a CDC advisory provides basic information about a public health situation. It may not require immediate action.

In New York, there have been at least 110 cases statewide, after the condition came under the radar of health officials in late April, when the British National Health Service sent out an alert after several young children developed symptoms. Patients have tested either positive for coronavirus or the antibodies, or both.

Last week, state health officials notified the CDC about the cases, many of which required intensive care treatment.

Three children have died in New York state, including one 5-year-old boy in New York City.

Researchers are still studying the syndrome, whose symptoms resemble toxic shock and Kawasaki-disease, which causes an inflammation of the blood vessels. The state Department of Health on Thursday published its own criteria for the disease, whose symptoms include prolonged fever, changes in skin color, abdominal pain and trouble breathing. Governor Andrew Cuomo earlier announced that New York would take the lead in spearheading global research.

It is still not clear how many cases there are in the U.S., although a pair of experts recently estimated there were hundreds of children admitted into hospitals for the syndrome and that five had died.

"There is limited information currently available about risk factors, pathogenesis, clinical course, and treatment for MIS-C," the CDC advisory read. "The CDC is requesting healthcare providers report suspected cases to public health authorities to better characterize this newly recognized condition in the pediatric population."

As More Children Are Diagnosed With Covid-Linked Illness, NY Is Leading Global Research Effort

3:00 p.m. Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Thursday that the number of children afflicted with a new illness associated with coronavirus has climbed to 110 statewide, eight more than the prior day.

"We have a situation that is serious and concerning," Cuomo said, during a press conference held in Syracuse. "I expect this is only going to grow."

Mayor Bill de Blasio earlier said that there were 100 cases in New York City alone (see below). It is not clear whether is a lag in reporting between the city and the state.

A total of three children in the state have died from the illness, known as pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome. The ages of the patients have ranged from those in infancy to young adults as old as 21.

It is unknown how many cases there are in the U.S. with the syndrome, although one pair of childhood health experts recently estimated there were hundreds of children who had been admitted to hospitals with the condition.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is yet to issue a nationwide alert, although one is expected to come soon.

New York state health officials have taken the lead on outreach to other states as well as other countries.

Cuomo said that as of Thursday, 16 other states, along with Washington D.C., and six countries in Europe have also reported cases.

The state Department of Health has published data on New York cases as well as a list of symptoms on its website. Hospitals are now required to administer a coronavirus and antibody test to any child who shows signs of the illness, which include prolonged fever, rash, and abdominal pain.

Noting that experts had previously said that COVID-19 largely spared children, Cuomo said the latest development showed how the facts were now changing and that the public should pay attention.

"I just urge caution," he said. "There are things we don’t know yet."

News about the illness comes just as states, including New York, are preparing to reopen some businesses and activities. Five regions in the state—Central New York, the North Country, which includes the Adirondacks; the Finger Lakes, including Rochester; the Southern Tier; and the Mohawk Valley—have been allowed to partially reopen on Friday after meeting all seven health and testing criteria.

Number of NYC Children With Covid-Linked Illness Grows To 100

11:00 a.m. New York City has now identified 100 children who may have an illness linked to coronavirus, 18 more that the prior day, Mayor Bill de Blasio said.

"It is still in the scheme of things a rare condition," de Blasio said, during his Thursday morning press briefing.

He added, however, that the city was taking the new syndrome, known as pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome (PMIS), "very seriously."

Of the 100 children, 55 have tested positive for coronavirus or antibodies for the disease. Three children in New York have died from the illness, including a 5-year-old boy in New York City.

The mayor urged parents to contact their pediatricians if their children experience any of one of the following symptoms: prolonged fever, rash, abdominal pain, vomiting, and a swollen tongue.

Experts are still struggling to understand the new disease, whose symptoms have resembled those of toxic shock syndrome and Kawasaki disease. A study published on Wednesday in the medical journal Lancet found a "30-fold incidence of Kawasaki-like disease" over the past month in the Bergamo province of Italy.

The authors of the study found a strong connection between the new illness and coronavirus, although they noted that their research sample was relatively small.

PMIS took city health officials by surprise. On Thursday, De Blasio said the illness "came out of nowhere in the city." Reports of cases in Europe first surfaced late last month. The United Kingdom issued a health alert on April 26th.

On Wednesday, de Blasio announced that the city would run public service announcements in multiple languages across subway stations, bus shelters, news kiosks and ethnic media outlets.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the nation's leading public health agency, is expected to issue an alert to all U.S. healthcare providers this week. The CDC has been investigating cases in New York at the request of state officials.

3 Million Americans Added To Jobless Rolls, Including 200,000 New Yorkers

Nearly three million people filed new claims for unemployment last week, pushing the two month total of jobless Americans in the wake of the coronavirus crisis to more than 36 million.

The new data, released by the U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday morning, was slightly higher than the 2.5 million some analysts had predicated.

While most states saw unemployment claims decline, New York saw a rise. There were 200,000 applying for benefits, up 5,000 from the prior week.

All told, about 2 million New Yorkers have found themselves out of work since the crisis began eight weeks ago. The state has ramped up its processing of claims from freelancers, gig workers and self-employed individuals not normally eligible to file claims for unemployment. As of April 25th, New York was one of 12 states paying out such claims under what is known as the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. 330,000 New Yorkers have been approved, but the state reports only 21,000 people are currently receiving those benefits. Since May 9th, there have been 53,000 new claims in that category.

On Wednesday, Melissa DeRosa, the secretary of state, said New York had to date paid out $7.4 billion in unemployment benefits to 1.7 million New Yorkers.

Facing huge budget shortfalls from lost tax revenue, many states are now in the process of reopening. In New York, four regions that have been lightly affected by the pandemic—the North Country, which includes the Adirondacks; the Finger Lakes, including Rochester; the Southern Tier; and the Mohawk Valley—can start a limited reopening of construction and manufacturing this weekend.

Speaking on CNN on Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio reiterated his statement from earlier this week that New York City could open in June at the earliest should infections and hospitalizations continue to decline.

But he said any openings would be premised on the ability of businesses to ensure social distancing. “The last thing we are looking at is large crowds, that’s months away,” he said.

De Blasio once again called on the federal government to provide aid to local governments. He praised Democrats in the House of Representatives for proposing a $3 trillion bill that would give New York City $17 billion in aid. But some Republicans as well as President Donald Trump have expressed resistance to giving states aid, describing the funding as a bailout for Democratic states, which have been most badly hurt by coronavirus outbreaks.

The mayor said New York City had already lost $7.4 billion in tax revenue and warned of cuts to essential services such as education, police and fire departments.

"Right now, if we don't get a massive infusion of federal support, we cannot make this recovery," he said.