By MORGAN WINSOR, ABC News
(NEW YORK) — A pandemic of the novel coronavirus has now killed more than 1.1 million people worldwide.
Over 43 million people across the globe have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new respiratory virus, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The criteria for diagnosis — through clinical means or a lab test — has varied from country to country. Still, the actual numbers are believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases and suspicions that some national governments are hiding or downplaying the scope of their outbreaks.
Since the first cases were detected in China in December, the virus has rapidly spread to every continent except Antarctica.
The United States is the worst-affected country, with more than 8.6 million diagnosed cases and at least 225,230 deaths.
California has the most cases of any U.S. state, with more than 906,000 people diagnosed, according to Johns Hopkins data. California is followed by Texas and Florida, with over 892,000 cases and over 778,000 cases, respectively.
Nearly 200 vaccine candidates for COVID-19 are being tracked by the World Health Organization, at least 10 of which are in crucial phase three studies. Of those 10 potential vaccines in late-stage trials, there are currently five that will be available in the United States if approved.
Here’s how the news is developing Monday. All times Eastern:
- ‘Blatant disrespect’ for scientists led to COVID-19 confusion, deaths: WHO
- Dow down 720 points as COVID cases rise and stimulus hopes evaporate
- New York’s micro-cluster strategy is working: Cuomo
- World ‘should learn from Senegal,’ WHO epidemiologist says
- China testing entire city after a single asymptomatic case
- El Paso County imposes nighttime curfew as hospitals and ICUs fill up
- US reports some 60,000 new cases after record-breaking surge
Here’s how the news is developing today. All times Eastern.
Oct 26, 8:24 pm
23 COVID-19 cases linked to Trump rallies: Health official
At least 23 coronavirus cases have been linked to three outbreaks that occurred at Trump campaign events in Minnesota in September, Minnesota Health Department spokesperson Doug Schultz told ABC News.
The outbreaks occurred at a Trump rally at Bemidji Aviation on Sept. 18, where 16 cases have been identified; a Mike Pence speech at a Minneapolis-Saint Paul airport hotel on Sept. 24, where three cases have been identified; and a Trump rally at Duluth Airport on Sept. 30, where four cases have been identified, Schutlz said.
Two of the 16 who contracted the virus at the Bemidji event were hospitalized, according to the Health Department.
Another outbreak occurred at a counter-rally that took place near the Bemidji event, where four cases have been identified, the Health Department said.
One coronavirus case was linked to Joe Biden’s rally in Duluth on Sept. 18, and one case was linked to Eric Trump’s speech in Becker on Oct. 1, but the Health Department said these two cases were not classified as outbreaks.
Since Sept. 12, the seven-day average of new cases in Minnesota has nearly tripled, increasing by almost 200% in the last six weeks. Minnesota health officials also reported a near-record increase of 2,268 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state on Saturday.
Minnesota’s health protocols currently cap gatherings at 250 people, even when outdoors, and masks are required in situations where physical distancing cannot be properly maintained.
An official news release about Pence’s rally today in Hibbing, Minnesota, said that “all attendees will be given a temperature check, masks which they are instructed to wear, and access to hand sanitizer.”
ABC News’ Soo Rin Kim and Arielle Mitropoulos contributed to this report.
Oct 26, 4:49 pm
Stocks have worst day in a month as US virus cases soar to new heights
The stock market had its worst day since Sept. 3, as COVID-19 cases spiked across the country and industries that needed a return to normalcy, like cruise lines and airlines, saw big losses.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 650 points lower, down 2.3%, to 27,685, while the S&P 500 fell 1.6% to 3,400 and the NASDAQ declined 1.6% to 11,358.
ABC News’ Rebecca Jarvis contributed to this report.
Oct 26, 4:16 pm
‘We have never been as vulnerable as we are right now’: Salt Lake City mayor
Following record-breaking COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations this week, Utah’s hospitals are reaching capacity, according to Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall.
Gov. Gary Herbert plans to open a field hospital for overflow patients if hospitals become overrun, but Mendenhall stressed that extra beds “don’t do anything to save lives” without additional health care workers to treat them.
According to the Utah Hospital Association, 20% to 30% of hospital staff aren’t able to go to work because either they or a family member has contracted the virus.
“Nurses and doctors are working extended hours, around the clock,” Mendenhall told ABC News Live’s “The Breakdown.” “They are exhausted.”
ABC News’ Terry Moran contributed to this report.
Oct 26, 2:00 pm
‘Blatant disrespect’ for scientists led to COVID-19 confusion, deaths: WHO
Countries in the northern hemisphere, particularly in Europe and North America, are seeing a concerning rise in infections and hospitalizations, as well as dwindling ICU beds, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of the World Health Organization, said during a news conference in Geneva.
“Last week saw the highest number of COVID-19 cases reported so far,” Tedros said.
When leaders act quickly, the virus can be suppressed, he noted. On the other hand, Tedros added, “Where there has been political division at the national level, where there has been blatant disrespect for science and health professionals, confusion has spread and cases and deaths have mounted.”
ABC News’ Christine Theodorou contributed to this report.
Oct 26, 1:14 pm
Dow down 720 points as COVID cases rise and stimulus hopes evaporate
The Dow was down 720 points today, or 2.5%, as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations rose nationwide. At the same time, Americans’ hope for a second round of stimulus checks evaporated.
“It looks like the clock’s run out” on a stimulus deal before the election, according to market research firm Fundstrat, and investors have turned pessimistic again.
Among the only stock market winners today is Zoom, up 2.5%, as the company continues to benefits from Americans working from home, while most other industries, including airlines and restaurant chains, struggle. Even tech giants Apple, Microsoft and Alphabet (Google), which have been relatively insulated from the pandemic, are slightly down today.
ABC News’ Rebecca Jarvis contributed to this report.
Oct 26, 12:37 pm
New York’s micro-cluster strategy is working: Cuomo
COVID-19 testing positivity has fallen to 3.25% in New York’s red zones, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a Monday news conference. The state’s overall testing positivity rate is 1.18%, among the lowest in the nation during a time when daily cases, hospitalizations and testing positivity rates are rising around the country.
“The easiest way to control with the maximum benefit is to wear the mask,” Cuomo said. Despite the fact that New York’s micro-cluster approach to stemming the virus’ spread appears to be working, the governor said he’s concerned about the upcoming holiday season.
“We have one of the lowest rates in the country,” Cuomo said. “I’m concerned about everybody else.”
Oct 26, 10:08 am
Pence tests negative, after close aides infected
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and his wife both tested negative for COVID-19 again Monday morning, according to a spokesperson.
The negative results come after at least five people within Pence’s orbit were found to be infected as of Saturday night.
Multiple sources familiar with the matter told ABC News that four of Pence’s staff members tested positive for COVID-19, including his chief of staff Marc Short as well as the vice president’s “body man,” a position that often represents an individual who is the closest aide to the office holder.
Pence’s “body man” and two additional staffers who tested positive have been quarantining since last week, the sources said.
ABC News’ Katherine Faulders and John Santucci contributed to this report.
Oct 26, 9:13 am
Trump’s chief of staff admits US is ‘not going to control the pandemic’
As COVID-19 infections surge across the nation, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows admitted Sunday that the United States is “not going to control the pandemic.”
“We’re not going to control the pandemic. We are going to control the fact that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigations,” Meadows said in an interview on CNN’s State of the Union.
When pressed on why the Trump administration wasn’t going to get control of the pandemic, Meadows said: “Because it is a contagious virus.”
Oct 26, 8:15 am
France may actually have 100,000 new cases per day, government advisor says
France’s public health agency said Sunday that it had confirmed another 52,010 cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, the highest daily increase the country has seen since the start of the pandemic.
However, Dr. Jean-Francois Delfraissy, who heads the scientific council that advises the French government on the pandemic, told France’s RTL radio on Monday morning that, in reality, the country may have an estimated 100,000 new cases per day due to undiagnosed cases and asymptomatic infections.
Delfraissy said that France is in a “very difficult, even critical, situation.”
As of Sunday afternoon, France’s public health agency had confirmed a total of 1,138,507 cases with 34,761 deaths. More than 12,000 patients remained hospitalized with COVID-19, including at least 1,816 in intensive care.
The European nation has the fifth-highest tally of diagnosed cases, after the United States, India, Brazil and Russia, according to a count kept by Johns Hopkins University.
Oct 26, 7:45 am
World ‘should learn from Senegal,’ WHO epidemiologist says
As the novel coronavirus spreads rapidly across the United States, a top infectious disease epidemiologist is praising the successful testing and diagnosis strategy of a West African nation.
“We can & should learn from Senegal,” Maria Van Kerkhove said on her official Twitter account Sunday.
And we should learn from 🇹🇭 🇻🇳 🇱🇦 🇰🇭 🇦🇺 🇳🇿 🇩🇪 🇰🇷 🇯🇵 🇷🇼 🇺🇾 🇨🇳 🇸🇬 … … …
— Maria Van Kerkhove (@mvankerkhove) October 25, 2020
Van Kerkhove’s tweet included a post from the WHO’s Regional Office for Africa about the challenges Senegal faced at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic and how the country has taken steps to strengthen its testing through digitization, decentralization and fast results.
In another tweet, Van Kerkhove said the world should also learn from Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, South Korea, Japan, Rwanda, Uruguay, China and Singapore.
Oct 26, 7:17 am
China testing entire city after a single asymptomatic case
All 4.7 million residents of a city in China’s northwest Xinjiang region are being tested for COVID-19 after a single asymptomatic case was detected there, officials said.
Local authorities launched the mass testing program in Kashgar, after a 17-year-old girl who didn’t have any symptoms tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday during a routine screening at the garment factory where she works.
By Sunday afternoon, another 137 asymptomatic cases were identified in Kashgar — all linked to another factory where the girl’s parents work, according to a statement from Xinjiang’s regional health commission. It’s the highest number of asymptomatic COVID-19 cases reported in a day in China in more than six months.
Testing of the entire city is expected to be completed by Tuesday. At least 2.8 million people have been tested so far, according to Xinjiang’s regional health commission.
Meanwhile, lockdown measures have been imposed and all schools in the region are closed until Friday.
Oct 26, 5:57 am
El Paso County imposes nighttime curfew as hospitals and ICUs fill up
A nightly curfew has been issued for El Paso County in Texas, where COVID-19 infections have exploded in recent weeks.
El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego ordered all residents to stay home between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m., starting Sunday night, for the next two weeks to help prevent further spread of infection. The curfew is not applicable for those traveling for work or essential services. Only one person per household is allowed to access essential services at a time.
A fine of $250 will be handed down to those who aren’t wearing a mask and $500 for any other violations of the order, Samaniego said.
El Paso County has seen a 160% increase in COVID-19 positivity rates since Oct. 1, as well as a 300% jump in hospitalizations. As of Saturday night, all hospitals and intensive care units in the area had reached 100% capacity, according to Samaniego.
“The purpose of the curfew is to limit mobility in the community,” Samaniego said during a press conference Sunday night. “Currently, our hospitals are stretched to capacity.”
Oct 26, 5:06 am
Russia’s daily case count hits new record high
Russia confirmed 17,347 new cases of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, setting a new national record, according to the country’s coronavirus response headquarters.
The country’s previous record of 17,340 new cases was set on Thursday.
An additional 219 deaths from COVID-19 were also registered in the last 24 hours, down from Wednesday’s peak of 317, according to Russia’s coronavirus response headquarters.
Moscow remains the epicenter of the country’s outbreak and recent surge. More than 30% of the new cases — 5,224 — and over 28% of the new deaths — 62 — were reported in the capital.
The nationwide, cumulative total now stands at 1,531,224 cases with 26,269 deaths, according to Russia’s coronavirus response headquarters.
The Eastern European country of 145 million people has the fourth-highest tally of COVID-19 cases in the world, behind only the United States, India and Brazil, according to a real-time count kept by Johns Hopkins University.
Oct 26, 4:36 am
US reports some 60,000 new cases after record-breaking surge
There were 60,789 new cases of COVID-19 identified in the United States on Sunday, according to a real-time count kept by Johns Hopkins University.
The latest daily tally is nearly 23,000 less than the previous day and falls under the national record of 83,757 new cases set on Friday.
An additional 914 fatalities from COVID-19 were also registered nationwide Sunday, down by from a peak of 2,666 new deaths in mid-April.
A total of 8,636,168 people in the United States have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since the pandemic began, and at least 225,230 of them have died, according to Johns Hopkins. The cases include people from all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C. and other U.S. territories as well as repatriated citizens.
By May 20, all U.S. states had begun lifting stay-at-home orders and other restrictions put in place to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. The day-to-day increase in the country’s cases then hovered around 20,000 for a couple of weeks before shooting back up and crossing 80,000 for the first time on Oct. 23.
Over the weekend, the country reported more than 83,000 new cases two days in a row.
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