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    SpaceX quietly recruited 4,300 employees for a coronavirus antibody study as it prepared for its historic crewed mission to the International Space Station. The effort earned SpaceX chief Elon Musk a byline on a research paper detailing the study and its findings that was published in the journal Nature last week. Researchers who tested the SpaceX staffers’ blood about once a month found that people who caught COVID-19 may develop “durable” protection from getting it again if they produce enough antibodies to ward off the virus. SpaceX sent out an email seeking volunteers for the study that started last April, the month before it launched the first manned spaceflight from US soil since 2011. That was also the month that Musk called coronavirus restrictions “fascist” after unsuccessfully fighting the shutdown of Tesla’s factory in northern California, where officials issued one of the nation’s first lockdowns. SpaceX worked with two...
    NEW JERSEY (WABC) -- Houses of worship and religious services in New Jersey received some good news from Governor Phil Murphy Monday afternoon.Murphy announced houses of worship and religious services can operate at 50% capacity effective immediately. NEW: Effective immediately, houses of worship and religious services can operate at 50% capacity.????Masks required????Members of different households must be at least six feet apart at all times— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) February 22, 2021"We know that for many of residents the ability to worship together plays a central role in well-being and mental health," the governor said.As the coronavirus numbers continue to decline, Murphy says he believes the state can take the next step."It is important to remember that masks will continually to be required, unless they must be briefly removed for religious purposes such as taking communion," he said.Murphy said faith leaders can choose to limit services to a smaller number...
    The White House is trying a different tack as it faces criticism over muscling its $1.9 trillion coronavirus spending package through Congress, with President Biden and aides trying to shift the onus for its contents to Republicans. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden was not "offering a negotiation" when he asked critics on Monday what they would cut from the proposal, which is already being considered by the House Budget Committee. "He was making the point that the key components of this bill are addressing the crisis we're facing," Psaki told reporters. "The point he's making is that the size of the package is a reflection of the size of the crisis." BIDEN'S CABINET IS MOSTLY EMPTY AMID SENATE BOTTLENECK The House is expected to vote on the legislative pitch later this week before it's deliberated by the Senate under the fast-track budget process known as reconciliation....
    NEW YORK (WABC) -- The state is opening two more COVID vaccination sites in New York City, and beginning Wednesday, the sites at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn and York College in Queens will be able to vaccinate up to 3,000 people a day.Governor Andrew Cuomo toured the Medgar Evers site Monday, when he also announced the MTA will run enhanced bus service to connect residents of the boroughs to the two vaccination sites.Vaccines given out at the state-run sites are by appointment only and are not part of the state's weekly allocation.Booking opened Saturday morning for residents of the adjacent neighborhoods only. After one week, scheduling will open to all residents of the borough.RELATED: Where can you get a COVID-19 vaccine? Tracking availability and progressEMBED More News Videos Lauren Glassberg has the latest on the vaccination sites in NYC and who is next in line for the shot. The...
    The Food and Drug Administration issued new guidance on Monday amid the emergence of new coronavirus variants for medical product developers. The regulatory agency said it is "committed to identifying efficient ways to modify medical products" that either are in the works or have already been authorized for emergency use to address the variants. "We know the country is eager to return to a new normal and the emergency of the virus variants raises new concerns about the performance of these products," Dr. Jane Woodcock, acting FDA commissioner, said in a news release. "By issuing these guidances, we want the American public to know what that we are using every tool in our toolbox to fight this pandemic, including pivoting as the virus adapts. We need to arm health care providers with the best available diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines to fight this virus. We remain committed to getting these life-saving...
    ABC News’ "The View" co-host Meghan McCain is sick of Dr. Anthony Fauci and called for the Biden administration to replace him with someone who "does understand science" on Monday because of his "inconsistent messaging" on the coronavirus vaccine. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, recently declined during a CNN appearance to say whether or not people who have received the coronavirus vaccination were safe to spend time with grandchildren and other extended family members. The comments irked McCain, who serves as the lone conservative voice on "The View." FAUCI DOWNPLAYS CONCERNS OVER COVID-19 VARIANTS, BUT CLAIMS VARIANT VACCINES IN DEVELOPMENT Meghan McCain called for President Biden to replace Dr. Anthony Fauci over ‘inconsistent messaging’ related to the coronavirus vaccine. (ABC) "I was very frustrated when I saw this clip," McCain said, noting that she understands the "horrific" consequences of coronavirus and the tragic death...
    NEW YORK (WABC) -- The United States is scrambling to clear the backlog of vaccination delays after the winter storms.There is some news of positive trends. Cases are falling nationwide by 73% and hospitalizations have dropped by nearly 55%.Still, concerns of a new wave persist. New York reported its first case of the South Africa variant in a Long Island resident and the vaccines may be less protective against it."If in fact, this becomes more dominant, we may have to get a version of the vaccine that is directed specifically against the South African isolate," Dr. Anthony Fauci said.Dr. Fauci also predicted that Americans could be wearing masks in to 2022.What to know about coronavirus:Tracking COVID-19 availability and progress in NYCNew Jersey COVID-19 Vaccine TrackerFind out if you are eligible and where you can go to get your vaccineCoronavirus by zip code - New York CityDo you have coronavirus symptoms?...
    CNN’s Brianna Keilar broke down on air Monday while sharing tragic clips of those who have lost family members to Covid-19 — urging viewers to remember the lives lost even if they are “tapped out” and “tired” of the pandemic. As the United States coronavirus death toll nears 500,000, the CNN anchor shared several accounts of people who have lost loved ones, growing increasingly emotional with each devastating story. She told the story of  Erica Becerra, who died of coronavirus-related complications just two weeks after giving birth to her son. She was never able to hold her newborn before she died. “Her last moments, she was tearing. I know she heard us. We prayed for her. We talked to her. We comforted her until the last moments,” Becerra’s grieving brother said in an interview following her passing. “She was like, mom, I don’t feel good. I don’t feel like myself. It’s hard to breathe. The weekend came...
    LONG ISLAND (WABC) -- Some COVID vaccines administered on one day at New York state's mass vaccination site at Jones Beach State Park had exceeded the permitted temperature.All those who received the improperly stored vaccine on February 15 have been notified and have had a new shot rescheduled.There is no health risk from receiving the ineffective shot.An official explained to Eyewitness News that it was an honest mistake.The vaccine was being transported in insulated coolers to waiting cars on a particularly cold day when a worker noticed the temperature in one cooler dropping close to the lower threshold.The well-intentioned worker attempted to increase the temperature, and it inadvertently exceeded the upper threshold.The affected cooler served less than 10% of the people vaccinated that day.New York State Department of Health spokesperson Jill Montag issued a statement saying,"New Yorkers' health and safety is our top priority, and due to this vaccine's very...
    INDIANAPOLIS -- Indiana public health officials announced 824 new COVID-19 cases and 35 additional deaths on Monday.Overall, 11,982 Indiana residents have died from COVID-19 and 656,358 have contracted it since the start of the pandemic.Health officials say the latest recorded seven-day positive COVID-19 test rate in the state is 4.1%. Health officials say there have been more than 7.7 million tests administered.Governor signs bill for Indiana COVID-19 lawsuit shieldIndiana businesses and others now have broad protections from lawsuits by people blaming them for contracting COVID-19 under a new state law.Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb on Thursday signed the bill that he and GOP lawmakers had made a top priority for this year's legislative session even as supporters don't point to any such lawsuits in the state.The law is retroactive to last March and only allows lawsuits against businesses when "gross negligence or willful or wanton misconduct."Supporters call the protections a key...
    CHICAGO (CBS) — Illinois’ average COVID-19 infection rate has now been below 3% for more than a week, a stretch not seen in Illinois since last summer. The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 1,246 new confirmed and probable coronavirus cases on Monday, as well as 34 additional deaths. Monday’s case total was the lowest reported in Illinois since July 28, although the 37,361 tests reported in the past 24 hours was the fewest since Sept. 14. READ MORE: Chicago Aldermen Back 100-Year Deal To Supply Lake Michigan Drinking Water To Joliet Since the start of the pandemic, the state has reported a total of 1,175,655 coronavirus cases, including 20,303 deaths. READ MORE: Seniors In Evanston Receive First Vaccination Dose Monday The state’s 7-day average case positivity rate stands at 2.8%, tied for the second lowest rate reported by IDPH since July 9. The state’s average infection rate has been...
    Half-masting will last 5 days.
    CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 1,246 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 and 34 deaths on Monday.IDPH is reporting a total of 1,175,655 COVID-19 cases, including 20,303 deaths.How much protection does the COVID-19 vaccine offer? How vaccinated people should approach seeing othersAs of Sunday night, 1,504 patients in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 377 patients were in the ICU and 169 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.RELATED: Illinois coronavirus testing: Where to get tested for COVID-19 in Illinois, Chicago areaWithin the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported testing 37,361 specimens for a total of 17,660,161since the pandemic began.The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from Feb. 15-21 is 3.1%.RELATED: Illinois COVID vaccine map shows how many residents vaccinated by countyA total of 2,256,975 doses of vaccine have been delivered to providers in Illinois, including Chicago, with an additional...
    President BidenJoe BidenBiden to hold moment of silence for 500K COVID-19 deaths Publix offers employees who get COVID-19 vaccine a 5 store gift card Schumer says he's working to find votes to confirm Biden's OMB pick MORE on Monday announced policy changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) meant to target coronavirus relief to the smallest businesses and minority-owned firms. Among the changes, the Small Business Administration is instituting a 14-week period beginning Wednesday and running through March 9 allowing only companies with fewer than 20 employees to apply for assistance through the PPP. “Small businesses are the engines of our economic progress, they’re the glue and the heart and soul of our communities. But they’re getting crushed,” Biden said in remarks at the White House, noting that roughly 400,000 small businesses have closed amid restrictions put in place to lessen the spread of the coronavirus. “It’s hurting Black, Latino,...
    Vox will propose that 8M be declared National Day of the victims of the coronavirus
    COVID-19 survivors who have gotten a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine are generating immune responses that might render a second shot unnecessary, potentially freeing up limited vaccine supply for more people, several new research papers suggest. The research, while preliminary, found that the previously infected people generated protection against the disease quickly and at dramatically higher levels after a first shot of the current two-shot regimens when compared with people who were vaccinated but hadn’t been sick. "Everyone should get vaccinated. Not everybody needs two shots," said Viviana Simon, a professor of microbiology at New York’s Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and an author on one study. "As long as we can’t deliver as much vaccine to everybody who wants it, I think it’s an important consideration." SANOFI PRODUCING JOHNSON & JOHNSON COVID-19 VACCINES The research, which has been posted on preprint servers but not peer-reviewed or published...
    The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world: ___ Julius “Dr. J” Erving is the latest NBA legend to reveal that he’s gotten vaccinated against the coronavirus, doing so Monday. Much like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Gregg Popovich and Bill Russell before him, Erving made the announcement in the form of a video distributed through the league. “We were never afraid to take the big shot,” Erving said in the video. Erving turned 71 on Monday, meaning he is well within the current age guidelines for vaccine eligibility as established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The video he appears in also includes short clips of Jerry West, Dave Bing and Wayne Embry receiving their vaccinations. The league has released these videos in an effort to help encourage the public to receive the vaccine when they are eligible and it is available in their...
    Teachers played a significant role in in-school transmission of the coronavirus, according to the results of an investigation by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention published Monday – the latest findings in the controversial school reopening debate that come as school staff demand prioritization for the COVID-19 vaccines.[ SEE: The Latest News on the Coronavirus Outbreak ]The CDC investigation tracked coronavirus transmission in schools in Cobb County, Georgia, from December through January and identified nine clusters of COVID-19 cases involving 13 educators and 32 students at six elementary schools. Two infection clusters involved probable educator-to-educator transmission, investigators concluded, which was subsequently followed by educator-to-student transmission in classrooms and resulted in approximately half of all the cases associated with the schools. Approximately 2,600 students, or 80% of the district's elementary school students, and 700 staff members attended elementary school in person during the investigation period – a period in which the COVID-19...
    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Southwest Utah Public Health Department announced plans to reschedule appointments for coronavirus vaccinations delayed by a winter storm last week. The severe weather impacted shipments of vaccine to area clinics from outside the state, KSTU-TV reports. Southwest Utah Public Health Department said its Feb. 18 appointments have been rescheduled for Feb. 22, 25 and 27. The Weber-Morgan Health Department also rescheduled Feb. 18 appointments for Feb. 22. Utah residents age 65 and older are now eligible to receive vaccines and should check with local health departments for appointment availability. Utah so far has distributed more than 607,000 vaccines, including more than 83,000 in the past week. For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it...
    A coronavirus variant first identified in Denmark is now surging through California and represents more than half of samples in 44 counties, according to new UC San Francisco data. The variant, called L452R, appears to be more transmissible than the original strain of the virus, although it does not appear as contagious as the UK variant, scientists found. Also worrisome is evidence that links it to worse outcomes, such as intensive care unit admission and death. Additionally, vaccinated people appeared to produce fewer antibodies in response to the variant, suggesting it might be more resistant to our immune defenses. The variant “should likely be designated a variant of concern, warranting urgent follow-up investigation,” concludes Dr. Charles Chiu of UC San Francisco, whose lab is collaborating with the state’s Department of Public Health to seek cases of the new variant. The findings, which have not been peer reviewed, were released Monday morning. The...
    An article outlining that people will still need to wear face masks after receiving the coronavirus vaccine is receiving blowback on social media. “You’re fully vaccinated against the coronavirus — now what? Don’t expect to shed your mask and get back to normal activities right away. That’s going to be a disappointment, if not a shock, to many people,” NBC New York tweeted on Monday, accompanied by a link to a story titled, "What's Safe After COVID-19 Vaccination? Don't Shed Masks Yet." You’re fully vaccinated against the coronavirus — now what? Don’t expect to shed your mask and get back to normal activities right away. That’s going to be a disappointment, if not a shock, to many people. https://t.co/FTNvDgcr9r— NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) February 22, 2021 The article was hit with criticism that the vaccine is “pointless” because most people want to return to “normal” routines, such as spending...
    THE Carabao Cup final could see fans welcomed to Wembley Stadium with the EFL targeting pilot events before the coronavirus lockdown ends. Earlier on Monday, Prime Minster Boris Johnson confirmed turnstiles will be reopened from May 17 after being closed for the second time in December. 2Fans could be welcomed back to Wembley for the Carabao Cup final on April 26, say the EFLCredit: PA:Press Association But the EFL are targeting a return for fans before even that and will work with the Government to make it happen. Wembley will play host to the Carabao Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham on April 26. An EFL spokesperson said: "We note the Prime Minister's announcement today in respect of a roadmap for easing national lockdown restrictions and the Government's criteria for a phased return of fans to sporting events. "As has been our approach throughout the pandemic, the EFL wants...
    Monday on FNC’s “Fox & Friends,” House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) voiced his criticism of the Democrats’ $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package. After highlighting that less than 10% of the massive bill is directed at “health-related items,” Scalise called the bill a “national disgrace” being pushed by the “far-left.” “Less than 10% of the money in this massive $1.9 trillion bill is for health-related items,” Scalise lamented. “I thought this was supposed to be about recovering from COVID. Start with the biggest item: $350 billion to bail out failed states. Look, California just announced a surplus of $10 billion, and they’re going to get probably tens more billion from this bill. New York State — we had an amendment to require New York to report the nursing home deaths data that Governor Cuomo has been covering up, the major scandal in New York, do you know that every Democrat,...
    It should have been a feel-good weekend for student-athletes across the Bay Area who play outdoor sports. It should have been a time to call teammates and coaches and get ready to start a season that until Friday seemed destined to not happen. But not in Santa Clara County. County health officials were noncommittal Friday when asked by the Bay Area News Group if they planned to follow the state’s updated guidelines for high school and youth outdoor sports that would give all outdoor sports a realistic chance to have a season before the academic year ends. Santa Clara County meets the COVID-19 requirements in the new rules (per-capita case rate of at or fewer than 14 cases per 100,000 residents). But officials said they needed to review the updates and would provide more information before the guidelines go into effect Friday. Did they not know...
    NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The United States is expected to mark a horrifying milestone on Monday, crossing 500,000 deaths from COVID-19. President Joe Biden plans to hold a moment of silence and ceremony at the White House. READ MORE: Gov. Murphy Announces Large Stadiums, Arenas May Reopen To Fans Next Week As CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis reported, so much has changed in the past year, and so many lives have been lost. “It’s a struggle on a daily basis,” Rima Samman, of Belmar, New Jersey, told DeAngelis. Samman lost her brother, Rami, to COVID-19 on Mother’s Day. She started a memorial in Belmar on Jan. 25, which would have been his 41st birthday. “He was always very helpful to others, he would do anything and everything for anybody, whether it was a stranger or a neighbor,” Samman said. CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC Ask CBS2’s Dr. Max Your Vaccine Questions COVID Vaccine FAQ...
    Despite a sharp decline in coronavirus cases and continued success with COVID-19 vaccines, it’s looking likely we will still be wearing masks for some time to come. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s coronavirus czar, said it’s possible masks could be needed until 2022. “I want it to keep going down to a baseline that’s so low there is virtually no threat,” Fauci said on CNN’s “State of the Union” program. “If you combine getting most of the people in the country vaccinated with getting the level of virus in the community very, very low, then I believe you’re going to be able to say, you know, for the most part, we don’t necessarily have to wear masks.” Fauci’s comments underscore what experts have been saying for weeks: that even as more people get vaccinated, masks are still going to be essential. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the U.S. Centers for...
    Frustrated by the nation’s vaccine rollout plan, The View’s Meghan McCain called for President Joe Biden to replace Dr. Anthony Fauci, a physician-scientist and the director of the NIH, with someone who “does understand science.” McCain first played a clip from CNN’s Dana Bash’s Sunday interview with Fauci, during which he did not clarify when those who have received the vaccine can begin seeing their extended family. McCain revealed she was frustrated by Fauci’s comments — condemning him for failing to provide a clearer post-vaccination plan to confused Americans. “The fact that Dr. Fauci is going on CNN and he can’t tell me if I get the vaccine, I’ll be able to have dinner with my family,” she said, adding, “It’s terribly inconsistent messaging.” She went on to note that Israeli officials have vaccinated half of their population and are urging for a return back to normalcy, questioning why the science and reasoning there...
    By: KDKA-TV News Staff HARRISBURG (KDKA) — The Pennsylvania Department of Health is reporting 3,427 more cases of Coronavirus and 44 additional deaths over the last 48 hours. READ MORE: 2-Alarm Fire Burning At Rowhouse On City’s North Side A total of 1,521 additional positive cases of COVID-19 are being reported today and 1,906 new cases were reported Sunday. The statewide total number of cases since the beginning of the pandemic has risen to 915,018 since Saturday’s report, according to the state’s data. There are 1,959 people across the state hospitalized with COVID-19 infections. Of those hospitalized, 421 patients are in the ICU. The Health Department says the statewide percent positivity for the week of Feb. 12-18 stood at 6.5%. The statewide death toll has risen to 23,614. There are 3,827,159 individuals across the state who have tested negative for the virus to date. #COVID19 Update (as of 2/22/21 at...
    NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- The New York Knicks and New York Rangers are joining together to welcome back fans to Madison Square Garden.Starting Feb. 23 against the Golden State Warriors, the Knicks will play in front of roughly 2,000 fans, followed by the Rangers on Feb. 26 vs. the Boston Bruins."We're very excited," Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau said. "We understand how important our fans are and certainly appreciate all the support that they've given us...We're looking forward to the day when The Garden is full, but we're excited to have our fans in the building - they're an important part of our organization."Rangers head coach David Quinn also expressed his joy for reopening day."Rangers fans are special - and we understand all the support they've given us from afar, so we cannot wait for the day The Garden is full," Quinn said. "Even if it's just a couple...
    By Maria Caspani and Anurag Maan NEW YORK (Reuters) - The United States on Monday closed in on the staggering milestone of 500,000 COVID-19 deaths just over a year to the day since the coronavirus pandemic claimed its first known U.S. victims in Santa Clara County, California. The country had recorded more than 28 million COVID-19 cases and 499,510 lives lost as of Monday morning, according to a Reuters tally of public health data, although daily deaths and hospitalizations have fallen to the lowest level since before the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. About 19% of total global coronavirus deaths have occurred in the United States, an outsized figure given that the nation accounts for just 4% of the world's population. "These numbers are stunning," Dr. Anthony Fauci, a top infectious disease adviser to President Joe Biden told ABC News' "Good Morning America" program. "If you look back historically, we've done...
    NEW JERSEY (WABC) -- Fans can returns to some arenas and stadiums in New Jersey starting next Monday, March 1, Governor Phil Murphy announced Monday.Any venue that holds more than 5,000 people will be allowed to open at 10 percent capacity if it's indoors and 15% if it's outdoors.It applies to both sports and entertainment venues.TOP STORY | Father-to-be killed, brother injured when gender reveal device explodesAdditionally, effective immediately, parents or guardians can watch college athletes play sports, both indoor and outdoors.Face coverings and social distancing will be required, and those who buy tickets together will be able to sit together."God willing, this is the first step of many more over the coming months," Murphy said.Unlike neighboring New York state, Murphy says PCR tests will not be required before entry."We are not requiring that, but that is also the reason it is only 10%," he said. "I think at the...
    New York : The New York state confirmed its first case on Sunday of the South African variant of the coronavirus, which was first detected in U.S at the end of January in two people residing in South Carolina and it has already emerged in other parts of the country. In his daily statement on the evolution of the pandemic in New York, that continues to reduce infections and hospitalizations, Governor Andrew Cuomo explained that the variant has been identified in a resident of the Nassau County, Long Island, but It did not offer information on whether the individual had traveled. This case adds, in addition to the initials in South Carolina, two others detected in the Maryland state at the beginning of February and to a last one in neighboring Connecticut a week ago, in a resident who had been hospitalized in the New York City. Cuomo pointed...
    New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) said he doesn’t accept Governor Andrew Cuomo’s explanation for his actions with regard to his ongoing nursing home scandal. During a press conference on Monday, de Blasio was asked if he has spoken to Cuomo since the governor’s combative Friday press conference — in which Cuomo faced numerous questions over the allegations that his administration undercounted and covered up how many people died of the coronavirus in connection with his nursing home policies. “Do you accept his explanation that the state created a ‘void’ by not being as forthcoming as it should’ve been, but there’s essentially no scandal there,” de Blasio was asked. “No, I have not spoken to him. No, I do not accept his explanation,” the mayor answered. “There needs to be a full investigation. Thousands of lives were lost. Families deserve answers. We need to get the whole truth...
    More On: Coronavirus Why COVID-19 rates are likely to continue to decline GOP will reportedly target ‘liberal goodies’ in COVID relief package Sanofi, GSK start new COVID-19 vaccine study after failed trial Biden will honor 500K US COVID-19 deaths with candle lighting ceremony Every adult in the UK should get their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by the end of July — as the British government moves to speed up its vaccination process. That target date of July 31 is a month earlier than when officials had aimed to get every adult inoculated in the country. The British government also said it plans to have everyone 50 and older, as well as those with underlying health conditions, get their first of two jabs by April 15, instead of the previous target date of May 1. “We now think that we have the supplies” to speed up the vaccination...
    BRUSSELS (AP) — Belgium's government on Monday presented scientific projections of the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country, indicating it would be very risky to extensively loosen the current restrictions over the coming weeks. Based on a model that would relax measures as of next week, Belgium could be faced with its biggest spike yet in coronavirus cases, while a similar relaxation on April 1 indicated a far more muted increase. The projections were based on the spread of the more contagious variant first identified in the U.K. The government will make a decision on Friday whether to extend the restrictions that include a curfew across the nation and continued closure of bars and restaurants while mass events, either indoors or in the open, also continue to be banned. After Belgium, a nation of 11.5 million, was one of the hardest hit in the first wave of the...
    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska officials are watching for variants of the coronavirus by sequencing the entire genome of samples of the virus. Peter Iwen, the director of Nebraska's Public Health Laboratory, said the detailed tests performed each week help scientists identify mutations of the virus and track how they affect the spread of COVID-19 in the state. So far, the lab hasn't identified either of the main variants of the virus that were first identified in the United Kingdom and in South Africa in the state. But the researchers have found two other mutations that may affect the virus’ ability to cause infections and severe symptoms, according to the Omaha World-Herald. The lab uses an automated machine that can map the DNA of 32 samples of the virus at once. Iwen said the lab’s goal is to complete three runs a week of the tests every week. He said...
    LONDON (Reuters) - England's coronavirus vaccine campaign is significantly reducing cases of COVID-19, with a drop of around 70% in infections among healthcare workers who have had a first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech shot, British health officials said on Monday. Data analysed by Public Health England (PHE) showed the Pfizer provided high levels of protection against infection and symptomatic disease from a single dose, and that hospitalisation and death from COVID-19 will be reduced by more 75% in elderly people who have had a first dose. "Overall, we're seeing a really strong effect to reducing any infection, asymptomatic and symptomatic," PHE's strategic response director Susan Hopkins told a media briefing. PHE's head of immunisation Mary Ramsay described the data as "strong evidence that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is stopping people from getting infected, while also protecting cases against hospitalisation and death". "We should be very encouraged by these initial findings," she...
    California on Sunday recorded its fewest new cases of COVID-19 since the first day of November, according to data compiled by this news organization, a span of 112 days. Although only select counties issue updates on weekends, the 3,495 cases reported Sunday were fewer than any day — Christmas, Thanksgiving, any holiday or weekend — since the very beginning of California’s winter wave more than three months ago. At approximately 6,580 per day over the past week, California’s average daily cases have been cut in half in the past two weeks, and the state recorded fewer in the past week than any other since the second week of November — down 85% from last month’s peak. At 3.1%, the rate of tests to come back positive in California over the past week also reached its lowest point since the first day of November — within a percentage point of its...
    By: KDKA-TV News Staff PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Allegheny County Health Department is reporting 374 new Coronavirus cases and no additional deaths over the last 48 hours. READ MORE: U.S. Supreme Court Denies Appeal On Ballots From Pennsylvania Republicans Of the newly reported cases, 278 are confirmed from 1,543 PCR tests. There are 96 probable cases. The dates of positive tests range from Oct. 8 to Feb. 21. Three positive tests are more than a week old, according to the Health Department. One is from October and another is from November. The Health Department says new cases range in age from 5 months to 92 years with a median age of 36 years. There have been 74,976 total cases and 4,782 total hospitalizations in Allegheny County since the outbreak began. The county-wide death toll totals 1,627. No new deaths were reported over the last 48 hours in Allegheny County. In...
    RONALDINHO’S mum’s funeral has taken place without the Brazilian legend present. The former Barcelona and AC Milan star was too grief-stricken to attend the wake and Sunday's burial of Miguelina Eloi Assis dos Santos. 3Ronaldinho was heartbroken after the death of his mum MiguelinaCredit: Icon Sport - Getty His older brother Roberto and sister Deisi were present to pay their last respects to their 71-year-old mum, who died on Saturday following complications in her long battle against coronavirus. A spokesman for the Jardim da Paz Cemetery in Porto Alegre said the 40-year-old former footballer was too “upset” to accompany them. Ronaldinho, who revealed in December his beloved mum was fighting for her life after falling ill with coronavirus, has yet to comment on Miguelina’s death. But like other members of his family he changed his social media profile pictures to black in a clear sign of the emotional turmoil...
    BRUSSELS (AP) — Belgium’s government on Monday presented scientific projections of the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country, indicating it would be very risky to extensively loosen the current restrictions over the coming weeks. Based on a model that would relax measures as of next week, Belgium could be faced with its biggest spike yet in coronavirus cases, while a similar relaxation on April 1 indicated a far more muted increase. The projections were based on the spread of the more contagious variant first identified in the U.K. The government will make a decision on Friday whether to extend the restrictions that include a curfew across the nation and continued closure of bars and restaurants while mass events, either indoors or in the open, also continue to be banned. After Belgium, a nation of 11.5 million, was one of the hardest hit in the first wave of the...
    BALTIMORE, Md. (WJZ) — Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott will hold a press conference at 2:10 p.m. Monday afternoon with the latest on the city’s COVID response and its vaccination strategy. Scott will be joined by health commissioner Dr. Letitia Dzirasa, president and CEO of Saint Agnes Hospital Ed Lovern, police commissioner Michael Harrison and fire chief Niles R. Ford. READ MORE: Jessup Inmate Tests Positive For UK COVID-19 Variant WJZ.com will be streaming the press conference live. READ MORE: Registration Open For COVID Vaccination Appointments At M&T Bank Stadium For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.   MORE NEWS: Maryland Weather: Up To 3 Inches Of Snow, Wintry Mix Expected In Parts Of Maryland Monday  
    JESSUP, MD. (WJZ) — An inmate at the Maryland Correctional Institution-Jessup tested positive for the B.117 variant, also known as the U.K variant of COVID-19. The Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services was notified of the case on February 19. They said they have conducted “comprehensive contact tracing.” READ MORE: Watch Live: Baltimore Officials To Give Update On COVID Vaccination Plan They also giving all inmates and employees both rapid and diagnostic tests, as well as sequencing to detect any presence of any of the COVID-19 variants. The “special testing operation,” as they call it, will include around 900 inmates and employees. READ MORE: Registration Open For COVID Vaccination Appointments At M&T Bank Stadium MCI-Jessup is reporting 29 positive cases of COVID-19, which they said is 4.4% of its population. “All staff at the facility, as well as all inmates over 65, have been offered the vaccine, and the...
    MARCOUSSIS, France (AP) – Five more France rugby players have tested positive for the coronavirus and will miss the Six Nations match against Scotland, the team said Monday. It takes the total number of players in the squad to have contracted COVID-19 to 10, massively depleting France coach Fabien Galthie´s options as Les Tricolores go for a third straight win to open the competition. Cyril Baille, Peato Mauvaka, Romain Taofifenua, Charles Ollivon and Brice Dulin are the latest players to have tested positive following checks carried out on Sunday. Scrumhalf Antoine Dupont, along with props Julien Marchand and Mohammed Haouas, center Arthur Vincent and winger Gabin Villiere, previously tested positive for the virus. Two other squad players – lock Swann Rebbadj and prop Jean-Baptiste Gros – were left out of the squad after being considered to have been in contact with two teammates from club side Toulon who tested positive....
    Loading the player... President Joe Biden is targeting federal pandemic assistance to the nation’s smallest businesses and taking steps to further equity in what is known as the Paycheck Protection Program. The administration is establishing a two-week window, starting on Wednesday, in which only businesses with fewer than 20 employees — the overwhelming majority of small businesses — can apply for the forgivable loans. Biden’s team is also carving out $1 billion to direct toward sole proprietors, such as home contractors and beauticians, the majority of which are owned by women and people of color. Read More: Biden to mark 500,000 US coronavirus deaths with candle light ceremony Other efforts will remove a prohibition on lending to a company with at least 20% ownership by a person arrested or convicted for a nonfraud felony in the prior year, as well as allowing those behind on their federal student loans to...
    MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko for talks on Monday, amid media reports suggesting that the leader of Belarus was coming to Russia to secure another loan. The Kremlin extended both economical and political support to Lukashenko after his disputed re-election in August triggered the largest and the most sustained wave of mass protests in Belarus' history. In September, Putin said Moscow would provide a $1.5 billion loan to its ex-Soviet neighbor. Earlier this month, the Kommersant newspaper cited government sources saying that another loan, this time of over $3 billion, would be discussed during Lukashenko's visit to Russia. The Belarusian leader denied the reports last week and said he was “not going there to ask for anything.” The two leaders met in Russia's Black Sea resort of Sochi. In brief remarks before the start of their talks, they highlighted the close economic...
    French drug maker Sanofi, battling development delays with its own vaccine candidates against COVID-19, is turning over more of its vaccine production facilities to industrial competitors, teaming up with Johnson & Johnson to produce millions of doses of its rival coronavirus vaccine. Johnson & Johnson is the second rival to have struck a deal with Sanofi to use its facilities, an unusual collaboration for the competitive industry now facing intense pressure from governments to speed up the production of vaccines against the devastating global pandemic. Sanofi's CEO, Paul Hudson, said the agreement announced by the company on Monday demonstrates its "commitment to the collective effort to ending this crisis as quickly as possible." Sanofi is still prioritizing the development of its own two coronavirus vaccine programs, Hudson said in a company statement. SOUTH AFRICAN CORONAVIRUS VARIANT DETECTED IN NEW YORK RESIDENT But "where we have the right manufacturing capabilities, we...
    Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to under-count the number of coronavirus nursing home deaths could open him up to criminal charges, according to a former Justice Department official. The State of New York provided data to the federal government in Sept. 2020 in which it under-counted coronavirus nursing home deaths by as much as one-third. These actions could be considered “a conspiracy to defraud the United States and… obstruct justice,” former Acting Assistant U.S. Attorney General John B. Daukas wrote Monday in the Wall Street Journal. It’s a crime to make false statements to the federal government. It’s also a crime to conceal information and otherwise obstruct government investigations, writes John B. Daukas https://t.co/zKxX3cuo78 — WSJ Editorial Page (@WSJopinion) February 21, 2021 The Cuomo administration’s decision to under-count nursing deaths was deliberate, according to Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa. “We froze,” she told state Democratic lawmakers...
    PARIS (AP) — French drug maker Sanofi, battling development delays with its own vaccine candidates against COVID-19, is turning over more of its vaccine production facilities to industrial competitors, teaming up with Johnson & Johnson to produce millions of doses of its rival coronavirus vaccine. Johnson & Johnson is the second rival to have struck a deal with Sanofi to use its facilities, an unusual collaboration for the competitive industry now facing intense pressure from governments to speed up the production of vaccines against the devastating global pandemic. Sanofi's CEO, Paul Hudson, said the agreement announced by the company on Monday demonstrates its “commitment to the collective effort to ending this crisis as quickly as possible.” Sanofi is still prioritizing the development of its own two coronavirus vaccine programs, Hudson said in a company statement. But “where we have the right manufacturing capabilities, we are stepping forward to show solidarity...
    PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island's largest health care organization on Monday started allowing patients to have visitors again, in line with state Department of Health guidelines announced last week. At Rhode Island and Newport hospitals, two visitors may enter together, but the Miriam Hospital is only allowing one visitor to enter at a time, unless one visitor requires an escort, Lifespan announced in a statement on its website. All visits must be during designated visiting hours. Maternity services will allow for a birthing partner only. All visitors will be screened for symptoms or potential exposure to COVID-19. Those who screen positive for any symptoms will not be allowed in. Visitation was stopped in November as coronavirus cases surged. The state's other major hospital group, Care New England, is still weighing its options. A spokesperson told WPRI-TV the organization “is aware of the ask to lift visitor restrictions and is...
    PRAGUE (Reuters) - Slovakia's foreign minister called on EU partners on Monday to send an advance vaccine shipment to the central European country which he said was in a "tragic" coronavirus situation with record numbers of cases. The country of 5.5 million has suffered about 100 deaths per day recently, the highest in the world relative to population on a one-week basis and ahead of neighbouring Czech Republic, according to data tracker ourworldindata.org. Slovakia had 3,672 patients in hospital with confirmed coronavirus as of Sunday. "I will inform my foreign minister colleagues about the very serious and what can be called tragic situation we have with COVID," Ivan Korcok told reporters ahead of a foreign ministers' meeting in Brussels. "I will turn to them to ask them, if they have a vaccine they cannot use at the moment, to provide it to us. "I believe it would be a very...
    Remember a couple of weeks ago when all the Buccaneers fans were causing another Covid outbreak because of their maskless Super Bowl celebrating? Yeah, apparently that did not happen. Two weeks after the media departed their D.C. and New York enclaves to poison America’s biggest sporting event with their doomsaying alarmism, it now appears as though absolutely none of their foul prophecies came to pass. Here is data from Hillsborough County, Florida, which is where the Super Bowl was held. Two weeks is the established timeframe for determining whether a coronavirus outbreak occurred. Two weeks after the Super Bowl, there is no evidence of an outbreak. Well everyone. It’s time. It’s officially been two weeks since the single worst thing that’s ever happened to experts & media…maskless Super Bowl Celebrations They’ve been wrong SO many times…surely THIS is the time a huge maskless gathering becomes a “superspreader” Oof pic.twitter.com/NX184cnFQo...
    ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — Maryland adds 611 new coronavirus cases as the statewide positivity rate drops below 4% for the first time since November. It now stands at 3.91%, down 0.17 since Sunday. there are now 376,966 confirmed cases since the pandemic began in Maryland. Seventeen more Marylanders have died in the last 24 hours, a total of 7,550. READ MORE: Red Cross Asking For Blood Donations Following Severe Weather Across U.S. Hospitalizations remain below 1,000 though they jumped up by 19 overnight. ICU beds continue to drop, now at 276 with 716 in acute care. Maryland conducted 22,188 coronavirus tests in the last day, with 3,993 testing negative. They have administered over 7.6 million tests since the pandemic began in the state. Phase 1C continues this week. Maryland has administered 1,087,086 doses, with 737,339 total first doses and 349,747 second doses. Of those, 8,788 first doses and 10,952 second doses were...
    Prince William has spoken out about his grandfather’s health condition. On Monday, the 38-year-old exchanged a few words with longtime royal photographer Arthur Edwards, who asked the Duke of Cambridge how Prince Philip was doing, People magazine reported. "He’s OK," said William about the 99-year-old. "They’re keeping an eye on him." On Saturday, Prince Charles visited his father, who was admitted on Feb. 16 to London's King Edward VII Hospital for "observation and rest" after falling ill.  PRINCESS EUGENIE NAMED SON AFTER PRINCE PHILIP AND DISTANT ROYAL GRANDFATHER William’s father arrived at the hospital by car and stayed for about half an hour. According to the hospital’s website, visits are only allowed in "exceptional circumstances" because of the coronavirus pandemic. On Monday, Prince William gave a health update concerning his grandfather Prince Philip, 99. (REUTERS) Buckingham Palace called Philip’s admission "a precautionary measure" taken on the advice of his...
    With the U.S. about to hit the tragic milestone of 500,000 coronavirus deaths, Dr. Anthony Fauci is offering a candid assessment of the nation’s response. In an interview on Good Morning America Monday, the infectious disease expert was questioned by host George Stephanopoulos about whether there was more that the U.S. could have done to lessen the impact of Covid-19. “Five hundred thousand Americans — families grieving all across the country,” Stephanopoulos said. “Did this have to be?” “Certainly some of it, but not this bad,” Fauci said. “I believe that if you look back historically, we’ve done worse than most any other country — and we’re a highly developed rich country.” Fauci did not invoke or directly assign blame to former President Donald Trump. But he did cite the prior administration’s lack of a national strategy as a primary reason why the virus has hit so hard. “There were...
    NBC News was roasted for publishing an "absurd botched hit piece" that criticized Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ coronavirus vaccination plan for prioritizing senior citizens, such as Holocaust survivors and veterans, because they might be Republican voters. The piece, headline "Florida governor accused of playing politics with Covid vaccine," was first published by NBC News on Thursday but came under fire on Saturday when the Peacock Network promoted the story on Twitter. CNN AND THE DANGEROUS DISTORTION OF TRUTH WHILE NEW YORKERS DIED NBC News senior writer Corky Siemaszko wrote DeSantis’ coronavirus vaccine distribution plan has been "marked by chaos" and "critics say he’s been quick to recognize the political gold in those precious doses" because the Republican governor "ignored federal guidelines and prioritized getting senior citizens" the coveted vaccine first. "When Holocaust survivors and Cuban survivors of the Bay of Pigs debacle — revered members of two other key Florida voting...
    Following a two month nationwide lockdown, hotels, gyms and swimming pools in Israel reopened Sunday for vaccinated and recovered coronavirus patients, while other venues including museums and shopping malls reopened to all public. Israel’s newly launched “Green Pass” system, which allows people who have either been vaccinated or who have recovered from coronavirus to enter certain venues, repeatedly crashed however, so the Health Ministry said that vaccination certificates were enough proof until the system was up and running again. Certain grades in schools in cities with low infection rates were also allowed to reopen. Some 4.3 million Israelis, which is close to 50 percent of the population, have received the first vaccine dose of the Pfizer vaccine and 2.9 million received both. Around three million Israelis, including minors and those who have recovered from COVID-19, are not currently eligible for the vaccine. While a Health Ministry study showed the vaccine was 98.9 percent effective...
    Joe Biden will hold a candlelight ceremony Monday at sunset as the United States stands on the brink of 500,000 deaths from the coronavirus pandemic.  The president will address the nation at 6 p.m. ET to mark the lives lost to the deadly virus.  Then he, first lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and second gentleman Doug Emhoff will hold a moment of silence and candle lighting ceremony at sundown on the South Portico of the White House. Biden last month observed America's COVID-19 deaths on the eve of his inauguration with a sundown ceremony at the Lincoln Memorial's Reflecting Pool.  A little more than a year after the first COVID death in the country, the United States stands at the brink of the half-million mark. No other county has had so many deaths from the virus. A year into the pandemic, the running total of lives...
    Loading the player... The U.S. stood Sunday at the brink of a once-unthinkable tally: 500,000 people lost to the coronavirus. A year into the pandemic, the running total of lives lost was about 498,000 — roughly the population of Kansas City, Missouri, and just shy of the size of Atlanta. The figure compiled by Johns Hopkins University surpasses the number of people who died in 2019 of chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke, Alzheimer’s, flu and pneumonia combined. President Joe Biden, right, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, left, tour a Pfizer manufacturing site in Portage, Mich. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File) Read More: Africa reaches 100,000 known COVID-19 deaths as danger grows “It’s nothing like we have ever been through in the last 102 years, since the 1918 influenza pandemic,” the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” The U.S. virus death toll reached...
    New York : The result of the pandemic for Coronavirus it has caused many countries to restrict daily activities, such as going to work, schools, cinemas, bars, theaters and parks, among others. This has changed the lifestyle of everyone. The good news is that there are already possibilities to generate immunity thanks to the vaccines that have been created and that are already available. Yet another battle is being fought, and is that of the disinformation. Anti-vaccines take advantage of, among other things, the deaths of older people that occurred due to old age or underlying health problems after receiving the vaccine, as Healthline reports. That is why you have to pay attention to what the scientific evidence says about the results of the vaccine and be very careful with the distortion of the information. Mass vaccination will make it possible to achieve immunity for the world population. Source:...
    The coronavirus incidence rate in Germany has gradually increased over the past several days. The Robert Koch Institute reported an incidence rate, or the number of people infected with COVID-19 per 100,000, of 61 on Monday. The incidence rate has been increasing since hitting a recent low of 57 on Wednesday, according to the institute's daily reports. Cartoons on the CoronavirusView All 511 ImagesThe incidence rate in two states, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia, is "moderately" and "considerably" above the national rate, respectively. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has repeatedly said the country will need to reach an incidence rate of 50 in order to ease the burden on its health care system and a rate of 35 to begin opening the country back up. On Monday, Germany added 4,369 new virus cases, bringing its total to more than 2.39 million. It also recorded 62 deaths. The death toll now stands...
    By Robert Preidt, HealthDay Reporter (HealthDay) MONDAY, Feb. 22, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Pregnant women have high COVID-19 infection rates -- especially women of color -- and they should be near the front of the line for vaccines across the United States, researchers say. "Our data indicates that pregnant people did not avoid the pandemic as we hoped that they would, and communities of color bore the greatest burden," said senior study author Dr. Kristina Adams Waldorf, an ob-gyn with the University of Washington School of Medicine. Researchers analyzed Washington state data and estimated that the infection rate in pregnant women was 70% higher than among adults of in a similar age range. They also found that rates of COVID-19 in pregnant women from communities of color were two to four times higher than expected, based on the race-ethnicity distribution of pregnant women in the state in 2018. A high...
    LONDON (AP) — Prince William said Monday that his grandfather, Prince Philip, is “OK” as the 99-year-old royal consort remains under in a hospital for rest and observation. William was asked about Philip when he visited a coronavirus vaccination center in eastern England. “Yes, he’s OK, they’re keeping an eye on him,” William said, and gave a wink. Philip was admitted to the private King Edward VII’s Hospital in London on Tuesday after falling ill. Buckingham Palace said the husband of Queen Elizabeth II was expected to remain in the hospital into this week for a period of “observation and rest.” Philip’s illness is not believed to be related to COVID-19. Both he and the queen, 94, received a first dose of a vaccine against the coronavirus in early January. Philip, who retired from public duties in 2017, rarely appears in public. Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This...
    New York has confirmed a case of the South African coronavirus variant in a Nassau County resident. The case was discovered through sequencing at a city-based commercial lab, and no other details were given in an announcement posted Sunday, such as the patient’s condition, travel history or when the case was confirmed. Gov. Andrew Cuomo noted a drop in statewide positivity and hospitalizations, allowing a further push on reopenings, but amid news of the variant, urged residents to double down on mitigation measures like face masks, hand hygiene and social distancing. DR. FAUCI: IT'S 'POSSIBLE' AMERICANS MAY STILL BE WEARING FACE MASKS IN 2022 "...With the discovery of a case of the South African variant in the state, it's more important than ever for New Yorkers to stay vigilant, wear masks, wash hands and stay socially distanced." Cuomo said, in part, in a statement posted Sunday. "We are in a...
    The $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package being pushed by President Biden puts more than $1 billion toward "socially disadvantaged" farmers and related groups — including an equity commission, agricultural training and other assistance to advance racial justice in farming. "Socially disadvantaged" farmers are defined as those who are part of a group that has been discriminated against because of their race or ethnicity. "By denying or delaying Black farmers the same loans, subsidies and other payments made to white farmers, USDA engaged in systematic racism that led to a dramatic decline in the number of Black farmers. This is not in dispute," John Boyd, president of the National Black Farmers Association, told Fox News in a statement. BUDGET RECONCILIATION: WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT PROCESS USED IN COVID AID FIGHT "Sadly, this long legacy of discrimination is baked into USDA programs, including how payments to Black farmers like me continue to be calculated," Boyd continued. In this Jan. 13,...
    Miami : Today is Monday, February 22 and these are the main news of the day: 1.- Surveillance video shows a black Cadillac speeding through the tourist area of ​​Miami Beach. He stopped for only a few seconds, after crashing a policeman’s motorcycle, which was unhurt. Three female passengers in the vehicle tried to escape but were captured and the driver turned out to be a minor. A gun and bullets were found in the car. 2.- The city of Miramar announced the opening of another vaccination center against the coronavirus in Vizcaya Park. For now, it is exclusively for residents 65 and older and frontline workers who live in the city and who have already secured their appointments. Meanwhile, hundreds of older residents received their second dose in Little Havana over the weekend. 3.- The CDC published the most common side effects after receiving the coronavirus vaccine:...
    The director for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) said in a new interview that statements made by former President Donald TrumpDonald TrumpFormer Florida officer arrested after live streaming from inside US Capitol during breach, FBI says Schumer says he's working to find votes to confirm Biden's OMB pick Pence declined invitation to attend CPAC: reports MORE and other Republicans who dismissed mask wearing during the coronavirus pandemic may have cost tens of thousands of lives.  "The evidence was pretty compelling by last March or April that uniform wearing of masks would reduce transmission of this disease," Francis Collins told Axios. "And yet, with a variety of messages through a variety of sources, mask wearing became a statement about your political party or an invasion of your personal freedom." Collins also said that pleas from national public health officials like himself to commit to face coverings while in public "got categorized in all sorts...
    LONDON (AP) — Prince William said Monday that his grandfather, Prince Philip, is “OK” as the 99-year-old royal consort remains under in a hospital for rest and observation. William was asked about Philip when he visited a coronavirus vaccination center in eastern England. “Yes, he’s OK, they’re keeping an eye on him,” William said, and gave a wink. Philip was admitted to the private King Edward VII’s Hospital in London on Tuesday after falling ill. Buckingham Palace said the husband of Queen Elizabeth II was expected to remain in the hospital into this week for a period of “observation and rest.” Philip’s illness is not believed to be related to COVID-19. Both he and the queen, 94, received a first dose of a vaccine against the coronavirus in early January. Philip, who retired from public duties in 2017, rarely appears in public. Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved....
    Maryland coronavirus numbers are trending in the right direction but the governor is urging residents to remain vigilant. Coronavirus hospitalizations in Maryland have dropped to 973, down by more than half after hitting a peak in January. It’s the first time since mid-November that Maryland hospitalizations have been under 1,000. The daily positivity rate has dropped to 2.5%, the lowest since Oct. 17. Cases per 100,000 people are currently at just under 13, a drop of more than 76% since last month. So far, the state has administered just over one million total doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, including 97% of all first doses received from the federal government. Gov. Larry Hogan called the numbers good news but he says the goal is to remain vigilant. “Our vaccination rate is rising, our hospitalizations and key metrics are all declining, and with each day, we are moving one step closer to...
    By FARES AKRAM, Associated Press GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip began its coronavirus vaccination drive on Monday following the arrival of the first vaccines to the blockaded coastal area. Former health ministers and several medical workers were inoculated with Russia’s Sputnik V jabs in front of dozens of cameras. More medical workers and patients with chronic diseases are to start receiving injections on Tuesday. The inoculation drive “will result in more immunity among the people and further curb the spread of the pandemic,” said Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qedra. The area has received just 22,000 doses of vaccines, a tiny fraction of what is needed to immunize the strip's 2 million people, including some 1.4 million people over age 18. The shortage of vaccines in both the Gaza Strip and the West Bank stands in stark contrast to Israel, which is on pace to immunize...
    U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday is expected to announce plans to slowly ease restrictions implemented to slow the spread of the coronavirus.  Schools are expected to reopen on March 8 while residents will be allowed to gather outdoors with one friend or relative for a chat or picnic, according to The Associated Press.  The next phase of reopening will reportedly come three weeks later, with groups of up to six permitted and amateur outdoor sports can begin again. But large gatherings and the reopening of establishments such as barber shops, pubs and gyms will have to wait until April, according to Johnson's plans.  Johnson has stated a goal of getting every adult in England vaccinated by July, and has kept the country under lockdown for much of the winter.  The country has reported more coronavirus deaths than any other European nation, with more than 120,000 lives lost to the disease. “Outdoor...
    DContainment measures will be implemented for the next two weekends in the municipalities along the Alpes-Maritimes coast to fight against the spread of Covid-19, prefect Bernard Gonzalez announced on Monday. One-hour outings will be authorized within a radius of 5km from Friday 6 p.m. to Monday 6 a.m. in an area extending from Théoule-sur-Mer to Menton, the most populated urban areas. And for 15 days from Tuesday, businesses of more than 5,000m2, except pharmacies and food shops, will also be closed in the department, and border controls reinforced, especially at airports.
    ▶ Watch Video: Gottlieb says downward trend in virus infections “likely to continue” Washington — Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former head of the Food and Drug Administration during the Trump administration, predicted Sunday that declining COVID-19 infection rates are “likely to continue” due to more Americans receiving their vaccines and the amount of people who have already contracted the coronavirus. “This has taken a tragic toll on the United States, but we should be optimistic, in my view,” Gottlieb said in an interview with “Face the Nation.” “I think we’re going to continue to see infection rates decline into the spring and the summer. Right now, they’re falling quite dramatically. I think these trends are likely to continue.” Transcript: Dr. Scott Gottlieb on “Face the Nation” There have been more than 28 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the U.S., and the death toll is approaching 500,000, according...
    GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip began its coronavirus vaccination drive on Monday following the arrival of the first vaccines to the blockaded coastal area. Former health ministers and several medical workers were inoculated with Russia’s Sputnik V jabs in front of dozens of cameras. More medical workers and patients with chronic diseases are to start receiving injections on Tuesday. The inoculation drive “will result in more immunity among the people and further curb the spread of the pandemic,” said Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qedra. The area has received just 22,000 doses of vaccines, a tiny fraction of what is needed to immunize the strip’s 2 million people, including some 1.4 million people over age 18. The shortage of vaccines in both the Gaza Strip and the West Bank stands in stark contrast to Israel, which is on pace to immunize almost all of its adult...
    MAURO BELLUGI, the former Inter Milan and Italy defender, has died aged 71 following horrific complications from Covid-19. Bellugi, who was admitted to hospital in November after contracting the virus, died last Saturday. 4Former Inter Milan and Bologna defender Mauro Bellugi passed away last weekendCredit: Alamy 4Inter paid tribute to Mauro Bellugi before Sunday's Milan derbyCredit: Getty The virus forced the Buonconvento native to have both of his legs amputated as it worsened the effects of a pre-existing condition. Clubs across Italy paid tribute to Bellugi with a minute's silence before their respective matches at the weekend. Inter also paid tribute to their former star on Twitter, writing: "Today he leaves us, a great man, a great footballer, a true 'Interista'. "Rest in peace Mauro Bellugi." Oggi ci lascia un grande uomo, un grande calciatore, un grande Interista: ciao Mauro ????⚫️????#FCIM— Inter (@Inter) February 20, 2021 Attilio Fontana, the president...
    By JILL LAWLESS, Associated Press LONDON (AP) — U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is setting out a road map on Monday for lifting one of Europe’s strictest national lockdowns — but the millions of Britons longing for a haircut or an evening out still face a long wait. Johnson announcing a plan to ease restrictions in increments, starting by reopening schools in England on March 8. People will be allowed to meet one friend or relative for a chat or picnic outdoors from the same day. Three weeks later, people will be able to meet outdoors in groups of up to six outdoors, and amateur outdoor sports can resume. But restaurants, pubs, gyms and hairdressers are likely to remain closed until at least April. The measures being announced apply to England. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all have slightly different lockdowns in place. Britain has had Europe’s deadliest coronavirus outbreak,...
    EXCLUSIVE: The largest conservative caucus in the House is circulating a new playbook on how to fight back against President Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill by exposing each of the ''liberal goodies" tucked inside the package. The Republican Study Committee (RSC) authored a three-page memo to conservatives to outline "all the left-wing items Democrats are hoping the public won’t find about." Fox News first obtained a copy of the fact sheet that is slated to be widely circulated Monday. Among the provisions raising eyebrows among the conservatives are $1,400 stimulus checks going to mixed-status families with undocumented immigrants; allowing Planned Parenthood to receive Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds designed to keep small businesses afloat; and nearly $600 million for additional emergency paid family leave for federal employees and U.S. Postal Service workers, according to the RSC memo. HOUSE COVID BILL INCLUDES OVER $100 MILLION FOR CONTROVERSIAL SILICON VALLEY UNDERGROUND RAIL PROJECT The memo...
    NEW YORK (WABC) -- The state is opening two more COVID vaccination sites in New York City this week.Beginning Wednesday, the sites at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn and York College in Queens will be able to vaccinate up to 3,000 people a day.Vaccines given out at the state-run sites are by appointment only and are not part of the state's weekly allocation.RELATED: Where can you get a COVID-19 vaccine? Tracking availability and progressEMBED More News Videos Lauren Glassberg has the latest on the vaccination sites in NYC and who is next in line for the shot. Meantime, New York City is expected to receive more vaccines today after shipments were delayed by winter weather.This will allow more first dose appointments to open up.Mayor de Blasio toured a new vaccination site for seniors in Red Hook, Brooklyn on Sunday.The site was only able to vaccinate 100 people due to the...
    The United States is on the verge of half a million COVID-19 deaths, more coronavirus-related deaths than anywhere else, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.   U.S. President Joe Biden will talk about the lives lost to the virus Monday evening at the White House, followed by a moment of silence and a candle lighting ceremony.  "People decades from now are going to be talking about this as a terribly historic milestone in the history of this country, to have these many people to have died from a respiratory-borne infection," Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease expert said Sunday on CNN. President Joe Biden speaks during a visit to the National Institutes of Health, Feb. 11, 2021, in Bethesda, Md. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, listens at right.To commemorate the dismal sum, the New York Times dedicated prime space on Sunday’s front page with a graphic containing nearly 500,000 dots, representing each individual in the...
    Fans booed vaccine news after the final. Getty/Andy Cheung Fans at the Australian Open booed as an official praised COVID vaccine rollout efforts. Australia's Deputy Prime Minister called the booing "disgusting" and "un-Australian." "This vaccine is going to get our country back to some sort of pre-COVID normality," he said.  Visit Insider's homepage for more stories. Australian Open fans who booed the mention of a coronavirus vaccine rollout following Sunday's final have been branded "disgusting" by the country's deputy prime minister. The booing occurred as Tennis Australia chair Jayne Hrdlicka spoke following Novak Djokovic's straight sets win over Daniil Medvedev Sunday. As Hrdlicka praised global efforts to roll out multiple COVID-19 vaccines and said that this is a cause for optimism around the world, fans at the Rod Laver could be heard booing. "With vaccinations on the way, rolling out in many countries around the world, it's...
    LONDON (AP) — U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is setting out a road map on Monday for lifting one of Europe’s strictest national lockdowns — but the millions of Britons longing for a haircut or an evening out still face a long wait. Johnson announcing a plan to ease restrictions in increments, starting by reopening schools in England on March 8. People will be allowed to meet one friend or relative for a chat or picnic outdoors from the same day. Three weeks later, people will be able to meet outdoors in groups of up to six outdoors, and amateur outdoor sports can resume. But restaurants, pubs, gyms and hairdressers are likely to remain closed until at least April. The measures being announced apply to England. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all have slightly different lockdowns in place. Britain has had Europe’s deadliest coronavirus outbreak, with more than 120,000 deaths....
    NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- The MTA increased overnight subway service Monday, taking one step closer to the resumption of full 24-hour service.Since May 6, the subway has been closed from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. to allow for enhanced cleaning, but the nightly closure has now been shortened to 2 a.m. to 4 a.m."The continued partial suspension will allow for the most aggressive disinfection regimen in MTA history, as recommended by federal and international public health authorities such as the Centers for Disease Control, Environmental Protection Agency and World Health Organization," MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye said in a statement.The MTA said crews will continue to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week cleaning all 472 stations and thousands of train cars.Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the change last Monday."The COVID numbers are down, so we adjust, we adjusted indoor dining, the curfew, today we are...
    By Stephen Nellis (Reuters) - Apple Inc said on Monday nasal swab maker COPAN Diagnostics has shipped 15 million COVID-19 sample collection kits to hospitals in California, Texas and other U.S. states, bolstered by manufacturing help from the tech giant. Apple awarded $10 million https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-apple-copan/apple-awards-10-million-to-nasal-swab-maker-copan-diagnostics-to-help-boost-factory-output-idUSKBN22J1RV to the Murrieta, California-based company in May last year and sent engineers to help revamp the production process at a time when shortages of testing supplies had slowed efforts to track the spread of the novel coronavirus. The iPhone maker had initially aimed to help COPAN go from making several thousand kits per week to 1 million kits a week, with the firms also looking to create at least 50 new jobs in Southern California. Apple did not say on Monday whether the 1-million-kit-per-week goal had been hit, but said COPAN had increased its production by nearly 4,000%, opened a new facility and hired 250...
    The U.S. stood Sunday at the brink of a once-unthinkable tally: 500,000 people lost to the coronavirus. A year into the pandemic, the running total of lives lost was about 498,000 — roughly the population of Kansas City, Missouri, and just shy of the size of Atlanta. The figure compiled by Johns Hopkins University surpasses the number of people who died in 2019 of chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke, Alzheimer’s, flu and pneumonia combined. "It’s nothing like we have ever been through in the last 102 years, since the 1918 influenza pandemic," the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said on CNN's "State of the Union." MICHIGAN WOMAN DIES FROM COVID-19 AFTER LUNG TRANSPLANT: STUDY President Joe Biden, right, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, left, tour a Pfizer manufacturing site in Portage, Mich on Feb. 19, 2021. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File) The U.S. virus death toll reached...
    MARCOUSSIS, France (AP) — Five more France rugby players have tested positive for the coronavirus and will miss the Six Nations match against Scotland, the team said Monday. It takes the total number of players in the squad to have contracted COVID-19 to 10, massively depleting France coach Fabien Galthie’s options as Les Tricolores go for a third straight win to open the competition. Cyril Baille, Peato Mauvaka, Romain Taofifenua, Charles Ollivon and Brice Dulin are the latest players to have tested positive following checks carried out on Sunday. Scrumhalf Antoine Dupont, along with props Julien Marchand and Mohammed Haouas, center Arthur Vincent and winger Gabin Villiere, previously tested positive for the virus. Two other squad players — lock Swann Rebbadj and prop Jean-Baptiste Gros — were left out of the squad after being considered to have been in contact with two teammates from club side Toulon who tested positive....
    By The Associated Press BERLIN — Elementary schools and kindergartens in more than half of Germany’s 16 states reopened Monday after two months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic. The move comes despite growing signs that the decline in case numbers in Germany is flattening out again and even rising in some areas. Germany’s education minister, Anja Karliczek, has defended the decision to reopen schools, saying younger children in particular benefit from learning together in groups. Karliczek told German news agency dpa that schools should use “all available means to prevent virus transmission” and expressed confidence that state education officials — who are in charge of school matters in Germany — would consider infection numbers when deciding where to reopen. Germany’s disease control agency say there were 4,369 newly confirmed cases and 62 deaths in the past day, though Monday’s numbers are often low due to reporting delays over...
    The United States is on the verge of half a million COVID-19 deaths, more coronavirus-related deaths than anywhere else, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.   U.S. President Joe Biden will talk about the lives lost to the virus Monday evening at the White House, followed by a moment of silence and a candle lighting ceremony.  "People decades from now are going to be talking about this as a terribly historic milestone in the history of this country, to have these many people to have died from a respiratory-borne infection," Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease expert said Sunday on CNN. President Joe Biden speaks during a visit to the National Institutes of Health, Feb. 11, 2021, in Bethesda, Md. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, listens at right.To commemorate the dismal sum, the New York Times dedicated prime space on Sunday’s front page with a graphic containing nearly 500,000 dots, representing each individual in the...
    The coronavirus vaccination campaign is bearing fruit in Israel with more than 45% of the population vaccinated. The country is reopening its economy. Almost half vaccinated Health and state authorities in Israel started the vaccination against the coronavirus, December 19, 2020. Two months after the start of the campaign, 46% of the population has been vaccinated.The large-scale deployment of doses of vaccine Pfizer has thus borne fruit. Thus, after several months of general closure, the country reopens its economy, reports the channel. RTL. Economic recovery A reopening of shopping centers, markets, museums and libraries was noted on Sunday February 21. Based on information from France Inter, cafes and restaurants, will however remain closed at least until March. The Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed the situation on Twitter.“We are the first country in the world to get back on our feet thanks to the millions of vaccines...
    By JOHN RABY The U.S. stood Sunday at the brink of a once-unthinkable tally: 500,000 people lost to the coronavirus. A year into the pandemic, the running total of lives lost was about 498,000 — roughly the population of Kansas City, Missouri, and just shy of the size of Atlanta. The figure compiled by Johns Hopkins University surpasses the number of people who died in 2019 of chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke, Alzheimer’s, flu and pneumonia combined. “It’s nothing like we have ever been through in the last 102 years, since the 1918 influenza pandemic,” the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” The U.S. virus death toll reached 400,000 on Jan. 19 in the waning hours in office for President Donald Trump, whose handling of the crisis was judged by public health experts to be a singular failure. The nation could...
    BERLIN — Elementary schools and kindergartens in more than half of Germany’s 16 states reopened Monday after two months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic. The move comes despite growing signs that the decline in case numbers in Germany is flattening out again and even rising in some areas. Germany’s education minister, Anja Karliczek, has defended the decision to reopen schools, saying younger children in particular benefit from learning together in groups. Karliczek told German news agency dpa that schools should use “all available means to prevent virus transmission” and expressed confidence that state education officials — who are in charge of school matters in Germany — would consider infection numbers when deciding where to reopen. Germany’s disease control agency say there were 4,369 newly confirmed cases and 62 deaths in the past day, though Monday’s numbers are often low due to reporting delays over the weekend. Education unions...
    Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, wearing a face mask to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, visits a pharmaceutical manufacturing facility during a visit to the north east of England on February 13, 2021.WPA Pool | Getty Images News | Getty Images U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce Monday how and when lockdown restrictions will start to be lifted in England. Government ministers are expected to discuss details of the "roadmap" for cautiously easing lockdown Monday morning. The prime minister will then outline the proposals to parliament later this afternoon, before giving a televised press conference at 7 p.m. London time. Johnson is expected to set out the latest data on infection rates, hospitalizations and deaths, as well as early data showing the efficacy of coronavirus vaccines. He is also expected to confirm that schools in England will reopen on March 8, and reveal more details...
    Cases of COVID-19 are increasing in some parts of India after months of a steady nationwide decline, prompting authorities to impose lockdowns and other virus restrictions. Infections have been plummeting in India since September, and life has already returned to normal in large parts of the country. In many cities, markets are bustling, roads are crowded and restaurants are nearly full. But experts have been warning that the reasons behind India’s success aren’t really understood, and that the country of nearly 1.4 billion people can’t afford to let its guard down. Public health officials are now investigating potential mutations in the virus that could make it more contagious and render some treatments and vaccines less effective. The spike has been most pronounced in the western state of Maharashtra, where nearly 7,000 cases were detected in the past 24-hours, accounting for almost half of India’s over 14,000 cases confirmed...
    Fans at the Australia Open were criticized on Sunday after they appeared to boo the mention of a coronavirus vaccine rollout during the men's final trophy presentation.  The booing occurred after Tennis Australia chair Jayne Hrdlicka remarked during the presentation how the global vaccine efforts were a sign of optimism following a "deep loss and extraordinary sacrifice for everyone." "With vaccinations on the way, rolling out in many countries around the world, it’s now a time for optimism and hope for the future," she continued, before the crowd at Rod Laver Arena started booing.  DJOKOVIC TOPS MEDVEDEV IN AUSTRALIAN OPEN FINAL FOR 18TH GRAND SLAM TITLE Additional boos rang out after Hrdlicka thanked the Victorian government, which last week ordered residents into a snap five-day lockdown amid outbreak fears, reports said. Hrdlicka eventually stopped her speech and told the crowd, "when you’re finished." Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack on Monday called the crowd's behavior "disgusting" "I don't like booing...
            by Chuck Ross  A Democratic state assemblyman in New York says that lawmakers are “inching toward” opening an impeachment probe of Gov. Andrew Cuomo over his handling of coronavirus deaths in nursing homes. In an interview on the “Skullduggery” podcast, Ronald Kim, a Queens assemblyman, also said he is willing to cooperate with federal investigators in an ongoing probe of the Cuomo administration. “Of course, I’m prepared to comply and spend as much time handing over as much evidence as they want,” he said, adding that many lawmakers expect to be contacted by investigators “very soon.” Kim came forward this week with allegations that Cuomo threatened to “destroy” him in a phone call earlier this month over his criticism of the governor’s coronavirus-related nursing home policies. The FBI and U.S. attorney’s office in Brooklyn are reportedly investigating the Cuomo administration’s handling of nursing home data related to coronavirus....