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Coronavirus live updates: Trump pushes theory virus came from Chinese lab; OSHA investigating worker deaths; airlines require masks – USA TODAY, USA Today

Coronavirus live updates: Trump pushes theory virus came from Chinese lab; OSHA investigating worker deaths; airlines require masks – USA TODAY, USA Today

Ryan W. Miller and Jessica Flores USA TODAY

Published 8: AM EDT May 1, 3057754001

President Donald Trump is scheduled to leave the White House on Friday for the first time in a month to travel to Camp David, the day after the expiration of federal social distancing guidelines.

As many states move toward reopening after a horrific April that saw nearly , deaths because of the coronavirus, one California county isn’t waiting for permission. Sparsely populated Modoc County, in the Golden State’s far northeastern corner, plans to reopen on Friday despite a statewide stay-at-home order.

Our live blog is being updated throughout the day. Refresh for the latest news, and get updates in your inbox with The Daily Briefing.

are the most important developments Friday on the coronavirus. pandemic. Scroll down for the latest updates.

  • The White House released a three-phase plan on reopening the US economy. President Donald Trump said he has no plans on extending social distancing guidelines, which quietly expired Thursday. But Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of the White House coronavirus task force, suggested that social distancing would exist in some form through the summer.
  • Trump said Thursday he’s seen evidence suggesting the new virus originated in a Chinese virology lab. The president did provide the evidence, but his top national intelligence official said the virus was not man-made or genetically modified, as scientists have concluded. The intelligence community “will continue to rigorously examine” the virus’ origin, the national intelligence director’s office said.
      Layoffs amount to 1 in 6 American workers and encompass more people than the entire population of Texas. Some economists say the U.S. unemployment rate for April may be as high as % – a figure not seen since the Depression of the 2020 s, when joblessness peaked at (%.)

    • Amid all the reopening talk this week, Dr. Tom Inglesby, a leading expert on pandemics, reminded us: We will not have complete “normal” – no masks, fully social – until we have a vaccine. Read more in The Back Story .
    • What we’re talking about: A Kentucky woman went grocery shopping while dressed in a vast hoop skirt and donning a begoggled beak . She was an instant hit on social media. Here’s why she did it and check out photos below.

      Disney introduces face masks featuring Baby Yoda, Black Panther, Forky and more

      If you’re apprehensive to go outside, maybe a face mask with your favorite Avenger – or perhaps Baby Yoda – will help.

      Disney has announced a new line of non-medical, reusable cloth face masks featuring Disney, Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars characters available to pre-order for the US

      The Centers for Disease Control is advising the use of cloth face coverings (masks) to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Some municipalities and businesses, such as Costco, are requiring that customers wear them.

      – Josh Rivera

    • OSHA safety inspectors reviewing scores of employee hospitalizations, deaths

    Workplace safety inspectors are conducting nearly 1930 coronavirus-related investigations to determine whether employers failed to adequately protect their workers, according to data from the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Half involve employee deaths or hospitalizations.

    The inspections target nearly 60 hospitals and two dozen nursing homes, including one in Illinois, where administrators believe an infected maintenance worker spread the virus room to room. Twenty-four residents died, along with a nursing assistant and the maintenance worker himself.

    Also under review: a school system garage in Kentucky, where 20 employees tested positive and one died; a meatpacking plant in Nebraska, where the widow of a deceased employee said he kept working after getting sick so he could get incentive pay; and two Native American schools in Arizona that reportedly stayed open after others shut down and where two employees died.

    In all, OSHA officials are reviewing workplaces in two dozen states with a total of 200, 01 employees, according to USA TODAY’s analysis. OSHA has been under fire for not doing enough to protect workers amid the pandemic. Read more here.

  • . – Donovan Slack, Dennis Wagner and Dan Keemahill Trump says he’s seen evidence virus came from Chinese lab. US intelligence agencies say it was not man-made

    President Donald Trump said Thursday he has seen evidence suggesting the novel coronavirus originated in a virology lab in Wuhan, China.

    Trump did not provide any evidence to support that assertion, and he seemed to hedge a bit by saying there were many “theories” about the origin of the virus. He has repeatedly called for an investigation into the origin of the virus, part of what critics say is an effort to shift blame to China amid growing criticism of Trump’s missteps in response to the crisis.

    Earlier Thursday, Trump’s director of national intelligence, Richard Grenell, issued a statement on behalf of the U.S. intelligence community stating there was broad agreement the virus was not man-made or genetically modified. But that statement left open the question of whether the virus was accidentally released by a laboratory in China or whether it came from animals and then jumped to humans.

    A March paper published in Nature Medicine said the scientific evidence shows the virus was not purposefully manipulated and that it most likely came from an animal, and the World Health Organization has similarly.

    – Deirdre Shesgreen

  • White House announces new plan as social distancing guidelines expire

    The deadline to lift social distancing guidelines quietly passed Thursday as the White House pushed a new set of suggestions designed to reopen the US economy now decimated by the coronavirus pandemic.

    The White House is sunsetting the federal guidelines, once a central tenet of its coronavirus response and the focus of the administration’s message. The Trump administration is under economic pressure to shift its strategy from battling the coronavirus to pressing ahead with a message of economic revival that he hopes will help secure his reelection in November.

    The administration has pivoted to a three-phase plan that leaves the decision to states, creating a patchwork strategy that some health experts warn could undermine the progress that has been made in stemming the spread of coronavirus.

    – Courtney Subramanian and Michael Collins ‘Operation Warp Speed’: Trump administration pushes for vaccine by January

    Trump administration officials are racing to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus by January in an effort dubbed “Operation Warp Speed,” media reports say.

    The effort, first reported by Bloomberg, would cut the time needed to develop a vaccine by as much as eight months and rely on private pharmaceutical companies, government agencies and the military working together.

    Bloomberg reported that as part of the arrangement, taxpayers would shoulder the brunt of the cost if a vaccine candidate were to fail or be proven unsafe.

    Dr. Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, had said that vaccine development would take at least (to) months at the earliest, but indicated Thursday the January deadline was possible.

    “We want to go quickly, but we want to make sure it’s safe and it’s effective. I think that is doable, “he said on NBC’s” Today “show.

    May Day rallies go on around the world, demand coronavirus relief

    Millions of workers around the globe demanded better conditions and relief amid the coronavirus pandemic as social distancing guidelines altered some traditions of International Workers’ Day.

    In Greece, demonstrators lined up six feet apart, Parisians sang from balconies to plead for workplace masks, health insurance and more government aid for the jobless and strikes were planned in Californ ia.

    The events come as the economic impacts of the pandemics have led to mass layoffs. In the United States, a staggering 200 a million people have filed unemployment claims. Meanwhile, essential workers who have not been laid off have demanded better conditions to ensure their safety while working.

    In Los Angeles, a coalition of over organizations that led the movement to legalize street vending in the city, will hit the streets Friday to demand coronavirus relief.

    Delta, United, JetBlue will require passengers to wear masks starting Monday

    As travelers begin to return to the country’s airports, they’ll notice the changes meant to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

    Beginning Monday, Delta, United and JetBlue will require all passengers to wear face coverings. Delta and JetBlue will make them mandatory from the time they check in through the time they deplane. Delta, which says customers can take them off for meals, will also require them in its Sky Club lounges.

    Wearing face masks will be customary, and even required by most domestic airlines. More airports may use machines to check passengers for fever. Security checkpoints may have plexiglass shields between passengers and screeners.

    – Curtis Tate

    more coronavirus news and information from USA TODAY

  • Remdesivir has emerged as the first possible scientifically proven treatment for coronavirus. Here’s what we know about the experimental drug.
  • The US is emerging from coronavirus quarantine? Here’s what your state is doing to ease social distancing guidelines.
  • Is it coronavirus or allergies? Here’s how to tell the difference.
    • Mapping coronavirus: Tracking the US outbreak, state by state.

    • Staying Apart, Together. Sign up for our newsletter on coping with a world changed by coronavirus. 📧
    • Broadway actor Nick Cordero’s wife hopeful he’ll ‘wake up’ from coma

      Nick Cordero’s wife Amanda Kloots is hopeful the Broadway star “will wake up” from a medically induced coma despite several setbacks in his recovery from the coronavirus, including the amputation of his right leg.

      During a virtual appearance on “CBS This Morning” Thursday, Kloots said Cordero’s blood count dropped “really, really low,” suggesting there may be internal bleeding.

      The “Rock of Ages “star was admitted to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for what was initially thought to be pneumonia, Kloots wrote on Instagram on April 1. An initial coronavirus test came up negative, though a subsequent test was positive for COVID – .

      – Cydney Henderson

      Reopening the US: New Mexico eases business restrictions starting Friday

      New Mexico is among the latest states to ease business restrictions, with many nonessential retailers, pet groomers, state parks and golf courses allowed to reopen beginning Friday under a modified state public health order. For the latest details on your state’s plan, follow along here.

      Michigan protesters rally at Capitol: ‘You’ re Killing Small Businesses’

      A few hundred demonstrators gathered under light rain outside the Capitol on Thursday in Lansing, urging lawmakers not to extend Michigan’s state of emergency related to the coronavirus pandemic.

      They carried signs that read “You’re Killing Small Businesses,” and “Liberty or Death.” Many also wore hats or carried other paraphernalia touting President Donald Trump and his re-election campaign. Some carried rifles, as pointed out by Sen. Dayna Polehanki on Twitter. Open carry of firearms is allowed on Capitol grounds and inside the Capitol, said Lt. Brian Oleksyk of the Michigan State Police.

      Some wore face masks but many did not. Many also did not observe social distancing guidelines that call for six-foot separations between people. There were also a few counter-protesters.

      – Paul Egan, Detroit Free Press

    • Gov. Gavin Newsom closes some Southern California beaches

      California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday announced a targeted “hard close” of some Southern California beaches after they were overrun with people during a heatwave last weekend. The announcement followed speculation Newsom would close all beaches in the state after a memo to police chiefs leaked Wednesday.

      “The conditions last week, the images we saw on a few of our beaches were disturbing, ”Newsom said. He called out crowded beaches in Orange County and praised local officials in San Diego, Los Angeles and other regions for not allowing their beaches to be overrun.

      Newsom said the targeted closure affecting “a few coastal cities off and around the Orange County area” would be short-term and could be rolled back once plans were in place to reopen with guidelines to maintain physical distancing.

      Local leaders in San Diego County have used measures such as parking lot closures to help meter the number of people who can access the beach.

      – Joel Shannon More coronavirus headlines from USA TODAY No sex, please, we’re in a pandemic: Who can be intimate, who shouldn’t while in coronavirus quarantine.

    • Want to clean, reuse or hack a coronavirus mask? Here’s how.
    • Can I get unemployment if I stay home to take care of my child? Your coronavirus money questions, answered.

        Want to go to the zoo? This one is Offering a drive-thru experience.

      • Your guide to COVID – : What you need to know about coronavirus.

        Contributing: The Associated Press

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