COVID-19: Resources | KGOU
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COVID-19: Resources

Updated Tuesday 11:05 a.m. ET

With coronavirus outbreaks picking up speed in dozens of states, the U.S. is now climbing steadily toward a new peak in cases that may soon rival the summer surge — when the country hit more than 60,000 infections on average a day for weeks in a row.

On Friday, U.S. cases surged higher than they had since late July, hitting nearly 70,000 in one day. The seven-day daily average is now more than 58,000 cases a day, as of Tuesday. New cases have gone up by more than 30% from two weeks ago.

People are getting the results of coronavirus tests in the U.S. faster than they were in the spring, but testing still takes far too long to help with effective disease control measures such as contact tracing and quarantining, according to the results of a large national survey.

China posted 4.9% economic growth in its third quarter compared to the same period last year, keeping it on track to be the only major global economy to record an economic expansion this year in the midst of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

"You have breast cancer," my doctor announced, faceless behind her mask. Silence. In the middle of a COVID-19 pandemic. Her eyes locked on mine and beamed as much compassion and kindness as she could muster.

"I'm so sorry," she said as we faced each other 6 feet apart in her office.

That was it.

The COVID-19 virtual hug: cold and sterile. Punishing, despite the best intents.

From his bar in Shadyside, Ohio, Matt Coffland has been counting on his town getting a new petrochemical plant since it was first planned, seven years ago. He says the southeastern part of the state has long been neglected.

"For us to get something like that, rightfully, I think we deserve it by now," he says.

The plant, to be built by Thailand-based oil and gas company PTT, would be a major construction project.

"You're talking an influx of close to 10,000 people at one point," Coffland says.

Feeling overwhelmed? Maybe the parent of a preschooler in your family just called to say they need extra help with child care, and a sick neighbor wants to know if you can pick up some groceries for her. Meanwhile, your best friend keeps calling, wanting to vent.

In less stressful times, perhaps, you'd have jumped to help out and lend an ear. But after months of social isolation, juggling work demands, and caring for loved ones, the balance has started to tip. Suddenly your own need for emotional support is outweighing your capacity for kindness.

When the coronavirus pandemic hit this spring, government relief payments provided a life raft to millions of people who had been thrown out of work.

That life raft, however, is now losing air, threatening to leave the unemployed in a perilous situation just as Washington leaders struggle to clinch a new package of aid ahead of the November election.

The Trump administration announced a new partnership with two major national pharmacy chains to facilitate the distribution of a future coronavirus vaccine to nursing homes on Friday.

"Today, I'm thrilled to announce that we have just finalized a partnership with CVS and Walgreens," President Trump told a group in Fort Myers, Fla., at an event centered on seniors. He said the plan was for the pharmacies to "deliver the vaccine directly to nursing homes at no cost to our seniors."

Updated at 3:16 p.m. ET

The U.S. budget deficit soared to a record $3.1 trillion, following a massive surge in government spending aimed at containing the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic.

The deficit for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 was more than triple that of fiscal 2019 and easily eclipsed the previous record of $1.4 trillion recorded in 2009.

Israel, which imposed the world's strictest second nationwide lockdown, will be loosening some restrictions this weekend.

After a four-week lockdown, including a ban on movement beyond one-third of a mile from home, the country has dramatically brought down its number of infections.

On Sept. 30, Israel's health ministry reported there were 9,013 new cases, among the world's highest per capita daily infection rates. On Thursday, there were 1,608 new cases.

Coronavirus cases are rising rapidly in many states as the U.S. heads into the winter months. And forecasters predict staggering growth in infections and deaths if current trends continue.

It's exactly the kind of scenario that public health experts have long warned could be in store for the country, if it did not aggressively tamp down on infections over the summer.

Updated at 9:57 a.m. ET

Shoppers bought more clothes and cars, and even returned to beleaguered department stores in September.

Updated at 1 pm, to include comment from the White House and the Department of Health and Human Services

Even the most effective, safest coronavirus vaccine won't work to curb the spread of the virus unless a large number of people get immunized. And getting a vaccine from the manufacturers all the way into people's arms requires complex logistics — and will take many months.

The Chinese port city of Qingdao is under soft lockdown after a cluster of 13 COVID-19 cases was discovered last weekend.

In the past five days, health authorities say they conducted more than 10 million coronavirus tests of all Qingdao residents, all of which came back negative. Still, residents have been asked to remain at home, flights to Beijing have been canceled and travelers from Qingdao to other parts of China must quarantine.

Health officials in Illinois on Thursday announced the largest number of COVID-19 deaths for a single day since June.

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 53 new deaths, the largest daily increase since 64 people were reported as having died from the virus on June 24.

Historically, tobacco plants are responsible for their share of illness and death. Now they may help control the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two biotech companies are using the tobacco plant, Nicotiana benthamiana, as bio-factories to produce a key protein from the coronavirus that can be used in a vaccine.

Wells Fargo has fired more than 100 employees, saying they personally defrauded a coronavirus relief program from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

In a memo sent Wednesday and obtained by NPR, the company said it had identified employees that it believes made false representations in applying for relief funds through the SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan program.

The employees' actions were outside of their work responsibilities, the company said.

London, Birmingham and other U.K. cities are now at a high alert for COVID-19, as officials tighten restrictions on people and businesses in a huge swath of England. The alert level rose Thursday as part of a new system meant to tamp down regional outbreaks.

"Things will get worse before they get better," U.K. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said as he announced the changes in Parliament. Europe is seeing a huge spike in new cases, Hancock said, "And here, we certainly saw the highest figure for daily deaths since early June."

Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced the approval of a second new coronavirus vaccine in as many months – but neither has completed the kind of extensive and rigorous three-phase trials required in the U.S.

Drug overdose deaths rose in the first three months of this year, according to preliminary numbers released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The data, showing a roughly 10% increase in fatalities, offer a first official snapshot of the pandemic's impact on Americans suffering addiction.

If this trend continues, the CDC estimates the U.S. will suffer more than 75,500 drug-related deaths in 2020, setting a bleak record for a second year in a row.

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