- The numbers: The coronavirus pandemic has infected 1.7 million people and killed more than 107,000 around the world.
- Grim milestone in US: The country now has more than half a million cases. New York state alone has more cases than any other country. The US also has the most coronavirus-related deaths in the world.
- Easter on lockdown: The Pope told the world “not yield to fear” ahead of Easter Sunday, which most Christians will mark from their homes instead of church.
India reported 910 new cases of coronavirus and 34 more coronavirus-related deaths in the past 24 hours, the country’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare announced on Sunday.
As of 9 a.m. Sunday local time, the ministry reported a nationwide total of 8,356 confirmed cases of coronavirus, including 273 deaths.
The state of Maharashtra and the capital New Delhi have the highest number of cases, with 1,761 including 127 dead in Maharashtra, and 1,069 cases including 19 dead in Delhi.
India reported its biggest single-day jump in cases on Saturday, when it reported 1,035 new cases.
According to the Indian Council for Medical research (ICMR), 17,143 additional samples were tested on Saturday
Londoner Holly Bourne has not had the widely recognized coronavirus symptoms — a cough or high fever — and therefore is not eligible to be tested by the UK’s National Health Service (NHS). But her experience of suddenly losing her sense of smell, combined with “weird head rushes,” headaches and exhaustion led her doctor to diagnose her “straight off the bat” with Covid-19 over the phone.
While there have yet to be robust studies on the link between coronavirus and smell, doctors have reported anecdotally that losing the ability to smell may be among the virus’s symptoms — but how widespread that is, and how long it might last, is unclear.
“I feel lucky I don’t have the really scary symptoms,” the 33-year-old author says. However, she describes her loss of the sense of smell, or anosmia, as “one of the most upsetting things I’ve ever gone through because you’re not in the driving seat…. I just feel really powerless and scared.
In Australia, previously mundane chores are being turned into a fun public outing in the midst of self-isolation.
Just scroll down the Bin Isolation Outing Facebook group to see. Originally begun as a joke between friends, the page now has half a million members and counting — and is filled with photos and videos of folks around Australia (and, increasingly, the world) taking their bins to the curb in fun costumes.
Danielle Askew created the page two weeks ago, after a friend jokingly wrote on Facebook that she was excited to take the bin out because it gave her a reason to leave the house.
So Askew, who lives in Hervey Bay, Australia, dared her to get dressed up for it. She did, as did Askew, who then started the Facebook page as a way to have a laugh with her friend group.
But that page quickly went beyond the group and Australia, reaching folks as far away as the US. What was supposed to be a private joke has turned into a source of joy for people everywhere, as more and more people find themselves stuck inside.
Pope Francis told followers to “not yield to fear” while leading an Easter Vigil the night before Easter Sunday inside an empty St. Peter’s Basilica on Saturday.
Quoting Jesus upon the resurrection, Pope Francis said: “Do not be afraid, do not yield to fear. This is the message of hope. It is addressed to us today. These are the words that God repeats to us this very night.”
The vigil, typically attended by thousands, was scaled back amid coronavirus lockdown measures.
“We are all brothers and sisters — may we bring the song of life,” he added.
The Pope also used the address to urge against the arms trade. “Let us silence the cries of death, no more wars! May we stop the production and trade of weapons, since we need bread, not guns.”
The vigil was part of the Pope’s Easter Triduum liturgies, a series of ceremonies given during the days leading to Easter Sunday — beginning with Holy Thursday. The vigil is to be followed by Sunday’s event, when the Pope will host Easter Sunday Mass at 5 a.m. EST or 11 a.m. Rome time.
There are several treatments being studied to prevent or treat coronavirus, but US President Donald Trump has been a cheerleader for one in particular: hydroxychloroquine, a drug currently used to treat malaria, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
Over the past month, he’s made many optimistic statements about hydroxychloroquine. CNN has fact-checked the president multiple times –and found that he’s being unrealistically enthusiastic.
Physicians, including Trump’s own advisor, Dr. Anthony Fauci, have emphasized that in order to know if a drug is going to work — and be safe — it has to be studied in clinical trials. It might work, but it might not. It might be safe, but it also could hurt patients.
In a late evening decision the Kansas Supreme Court sided with Kansas Governor Laura Kelly saying the Legislative Coordinating Council (LCC) did not have the authority to override Gov. Kelly’s Executive Order 20-18 which temporarily banned mass gatherings of 10 or more people.
The LCC, which is composed of House and Senate leaders, voted along party lines Wednesday to throw out the Gov. Kelly’s order. Gov. Kelly’s administration filed the lawsuit against the state’s LCC Thursday evening.
With the court’s ruling the governor’s order will now be in place for Easter Sunday services.
Japan’s health ministry recorded 714 new coronavirus cases and four deaths on Saturday. This is the fifth day in a row the country has seen a record spike in the number of cases.
The latest spike brings the number of total infections to 7,460, including 712 from the Diamond Princess cruise ship.
The total number of deaths in Japan now stands at 109.
In Tokyo, a record 197 cases of infection were confirmed on Saturday, bringing the total to 1,902.
This post has been updated to reflect it was the fifth day in a row the country has seen a spike in cases.
Embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced that a national state of alarm due to novel coronavirus will be extended for thirty days.
“Today, April 11, I signed the state of alarm for 30 more days for Venezuela. Although we confined the contagion, we cannot sing victory,” Maduro said in a phone call to state-run VTV.
As the current state of emergency was due to expire on Monday April 13, the new announcement appears to indicate that the lockdown will run through May 13, although Maduro did not mention specific dates.
Venezuela has 175 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus and nine deaths related, according to the Maduro government. However, testing for the virus has not been widespread in the country.
Maduro first declared a state of alarm on March 13 and, shortly afterward, a nationwide quarantine in order to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus.
As of 10 p.m. Eastern time, there are at least 529,740 cases of coronavirus in the United States, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.
So far, at least 20,602 people have died from coronavirus across the country.
The totals include cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and US territories, as well as all cases repatriated from overseas.
Wyoming is the only state that has not reported any deaths from coronavirus.
This week, people in Wuhan are going back to work, businesses and shops are reopening, and cars and pedestrians are back on the once-deserted streets, but for many people like Zhang Hai, Wuhan will never be the same.
The coronavirus has claimed more than 2,500 lives in the city, accounting for 77% of all Covid-19 deaths in China, according to the National Health Commission.
As life starts to regain some semblance of normality, thousands of bereft families are faced with a task that has been put on hold for months: burying their loved ones.
“My heart was broken in Wuhan,” Zhang said of his hometown in central China, the original epicenter of the now global pandemic. “Inside, I’m filled with grief, and anger.”
An administration official told CNN that the United States government’s top public health experts agreed in the third week of February on the need to begin moving away from a containment strategy and toward a mitigation strategy that would involve aggressive social distancing measures.
The agreement among the health officials came after they held a tabletop exercise to game out the potential for a full-blown pandemic, the official told CNN.
The public health officials had planned to urge US President Donald Trump to move toward a mitigation strategy after he returned from a trip to India, the administration official said, but that meeting was scrapped after Trump returned to Washington infuriated by a plunging stock market and CDC official Dr. Nancy Messonier’s warning about “severe” disruptions to daily life.
Messonier was merely voicing the consensus among the administration’s public health experts, but she jumped the gun — doing so without getting official buy-in.
The official also confirmed that a February 23 email from a researcher at the Georgia Institute of Technology sharing a report of potential asymptomatic spread of the disease caused alarm among several top officials, the official said.
It would take more than three weeks for Trump to enact social distancing guidelines, on March 16.
China reported 99 new confirmed cases of novel coronavirus and no additional deaths at the end of Saturday, according to the country’s National Health Commission.
This raises the national case total to 82,052, while the death toll remains at 3,339. The total number of people recovered and discharged from hospital sits at 77,575.
Of the 99 new cases, 97 were imported, according to National Health Commission. China has introduced stringent restrictions on incoming travel in an attempt to stave off a renewed wave of infections brought in from overseas as the country gradually goes back to work.
Additionally, 63 new asymptomatic infections were reported, including 12 imported cases. There are currently 1,086 asymptomatic cases under medical observation across China.