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U.S. COVID-19 cases top 50,000 for 3rd straight day

Oct. 10 (UPI) — For the third-straight day, the number of positive cases of COVID-19 in the United States topped 50,000, a level not seen since August, U.S. officials said Saturday.

Data the Johns Hopkins University global tracker showed there were 57,420 new cases and 990 deaths Friday in the United States. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the country has had 7.7 million confirmed cases and at least 214,000 deaths.

An updated model released Friday by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington School of Medicine, projects 394,693 deaths in the United States by Feb. 1. The model predicts that U.S. daily deaths will peak at 2,300 in mid-January with 116,000 hospital beds needed by Jan. 22. Daily U.S. deaths are around 1,000 this month.

Expanding the use of masks from the United States’ current rate of 69% to about 95% — the rate in Singapore — would save 79,000 lives between now and Feb. 1, the study predicted.

The virus is increasing in 24 states listed in the “red zone,” according to White House Coronavirus Task Force documents published Sunday and obtained by the Center for Public Integrity. North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Montana and Utah top the list of outbreaks.

In North Dakota, the state health department reported 4,169 active positive cases Saturday with a 14-day rolling positivity rate of 7.24%. The state health department reported that 11.3 % of staffed hospital beds were available for future patients.

In South Dakota, where Gov. Kristi Noem has resisted ordering statewide lockdowns and mask mandates, the state health department reported there were 732 new cases Friday, with the state’s positivity rate at 12.1% and an average of five deaths per day. The number of average daily positive cases in South Dakota has increased by almost 50% over the past week, The New York Times reported Saturday.

In Wisconsin, the state said 2,354 positive tests were reported Friday, with a positive testing rate of 17.6%. Eighteen deaths were recorded Friday from COVID-19.

Gov. Tony Evers issued an emergency order Tuesday mandating that public indoor gatherings not exceed occupancy rates of 25%.

“Wisconsin is now a COVID-19 hotspot,” Evers said in a statement. “Wisconsin must use all its tools, including keeping people physically apart and wearing face coverings, to slow this dangerous spike. The consequences of failing to act could be devastating and deadly.”

Scenes from the White House as coronavirus hot spot

White House Deputy Press Secretary Brian Morgenstern speaks to members of the White House press corps about the status of President Donald Trump’s health as he recovers from coronavirus outside of the West Wing of the White House on Wednesday. Photo by Sarah Silbiger/UPI | License Photo

U.S. COVID-19 deaths top 50,000 for 3rd straight day

Oct. 10 (UPI) — For the third-straight day, the number of positive cases of COVID-19 in the United States topped 50,000, a level not seen since August, U.S. officials said Saturday.

Data the Johns Hopkins University global tracker showed there were 57,420 new cases and 990 deaths Friday in the United States. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the country has had 7.7 million confirmed cases and at least 214,000 deaths.

An updated model released Friday by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington School of Medicine, projects 394,693 deaths in the United States by Feb. 1. The model predicts that U.S. daily deaths will peak at 2,300 in mid-January with 116,000 hospital beds needed by Jan. 22. Daily U.S. deaths are around 1,000 this month.

Expanding the use of masks from the United States’ current rate of 69% to about 95% — the rate in Singapore — would save 79,000 lives between now and Feb. 1, the study predicted.

The virus is increasing in 24 states listed in the “red zone,” according to White House Coronavirus Task Force documents published Sunday and obtained by the Center for Public Integrity. North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Montana and Utah top the list of outbreaks.

In North Dakota, the state health department reported 4,169 active positive cases Saturday with a 14-day rolling positivity rate of 7.24%. The state health department reported that 11.3 % of staffed hospital beds were available for future patients.

In South Dakota, where Gov. Kristi Noem has resisted ordering statewide lockdowns and mask mandates, the state health department reported there were 732 new cases Friday, with the state’s positivity rate at 12.1% and an average of five deaths per day. The number of average daily positive cases in South Dakota has increased by almost 50% over the past week, The New York Times reported Saturday.

In Wisconsin, the state said 2,354 positive tests were reported Friday, with a positive testing rate of 17.6%. Eighteen deaths were recorded Friday from COVID-19.

Gov. Tony Evers issued an emergency order Tuesday mandating that public indoor gatherings not exceed occupancy rates of 25%.

“Wisconsin is now a COVID-19 hotspot,” Evers said in a statement. “Wisconsin must use all its tools, including keeping people physically apart and wearing face coverings, to slow this dangerous spike. The consequences of failing to act could be devastating and deadly.”

Scenes from the White House as coronavirus hot spot

White House Deputy Press Secretary Brian Morgenstern speaks to members of the White House press corps about the status of President Donald Trump’s health as he recovers from coronavirus outside of the West Wing of the White House on Wednesday. Photo by Sarah Silbiger/UPI | License Photo

The Latest: Connection Entering 3rd Reopening Phase Thursday | World News

HARTFORD, Conn. — Connecticut’s third reopening phase is set to begin Thursday, a milestone during the coronavirus pandemic that is getting a lukewarm reception from some business owners and arts aficionados.

A number of restaurant owners say they won’t be able to reach the new 75% capacity limit for indoor dining because they don’t have the space, primarily due to the requirement that tables be at least 6 feet apart. The indoor capacity maximum is being increased from 50%.

Indoor performing arts venues will be allowed to open beginning Thursday at 50% capacity, while outdoor event venues will be allowed to increase their capacity from 25% to 50%, with required masks and social distancing at all locations. But many theaters and concert venues have decided not to open this week, as shows already have been canceled and many say they can’t make money with half-full facilities.

The Phase 3 reopening comes as Connecticut has seen a slight uptick in coronavirus cases. Nearly 140 people were hospitalized as of Wednesday, up from 50 from a month ago and the highest number since late June.

The positive test rate for the virus was less than 1% over most of the summer, but has edged up to around 1.5% recently.

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— President Trump’s doctor says he’s been symptom-free for 24 hours

— What do we know about superspreader events in the pandemic?

— Gov. Cuomo issues restrictions in parts of New York

— Eli Lilly and Company has asked the U.S. government to allow emergency use of an experimental antibody therapy.

— Ethics experts say the special treatment Trump received to access an experimental COVID-19 drug raises fairness issues and public’s right to know about his condition.

— Tennessee will not be returning to the team’s facility after two more players tested positive and New England Patriots have canceled practice through Thursday amid reports that a third player has tested positive for the coronavirus.

— Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

ORLANDO, Fla. — About 8,800 part-time union workers at Walt Disney World in Florida will be part of the 28,000 layoffs in Disney’s parks division in California and Florida, union officials said Wednesday.

The addition of the union workers to the almost 6,500 nonunion layoff already announced brings the Disney-related job losses in Florida to more than 15,000 workers.

Disney officials announced last week that it was laying off 28,000 workers because of the coronavirus pandemic. Two-thirds of the planned layoffs involved part-time workers and they ranged from salaried employees to hourly workers.

Disney’s parks closed last spring as the pandemic began spreading in the U.S. The Florida parks reopened this summer, but the California parks have yet to reopen as the company awaits guidance from the state of California.

In a letter to employees, Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experience and Product, said California’s “unwillingness to lift restrictions that would allow Disneyland to

Connecticut enters 3rd reopening phase Thursday

HARTFORD, Conn. — Connecticut’s third reopening phase is set to begin Thursday, a milestone during the coronavirus pandemic that is getting a lukewarm reception from some business owners and arts aficionados.

A number of restaurant owners say they won’t be able to reach the new 75% capacity limit for indoor dining because they don’t have the space, primarily due to the requirement that tables be at least 6 feet apart. The indoor capacity maximum is being increased from 50%.

Indoor performing arts venues will be allowed to open beginning Thursday at 50% capacity, while outdoor event venues will be allowed to increase their capacity from 25% to 50%, with required masks and social distancing at all locations. But many theaters and concert venues have decided not to open this week, as shows already have been canceled and many say they can’t make money with half-full facilities.

The Phase 3 reopening comes as Connecticut has seen a slight uptick in coronavirus cases. Nearly 140 people were hospitalized as of Wednesday, up from 50 from a month ago and the highest number since late June.


The positive test rate for the virus was less than 1% over most of the summer, but has edged up to around 1.5% recently.

___

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— President Trump’s doctor says he’s been symptom-free for 24 hours

— What do we know about superspreader events in the pandemic?

— Gov. Cuomo issues restrictions in parts of New York

— Eli Lilly and Company has asked the U.S. government to allow emergency use of an experimental antibody therapy.

— Ethics experts say the special treatment Trump received to access an experimental COVID-19 drug raises fairness issues and public’s right to know about his condition.

— Tennessee will not be returning to the team’s facility after two more players tested positive and New England Patriots have canceled practice through Thursday amid reports that a third player has tested positive for the coronavirus.

— Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

___

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

ORLANDO, Fla. — About 8,800 part-time union workers at Walt Disney World in Florida will be part of the 28,000 layoffs in Disney’s parks division in California and Florida, union officials said Wednesday.

The addition of the union workers to the almost 6,500 nonunion layoff already announced brings the Disney-related job losses in Florida to more than 15,000 workers.

Disney officials announced last week that it was laying off 28,000 workers because of the coronavirus pandemic. Two-thirds of the planned layoffs involved part-time workers and they ranged from salaried employees to hourly workers.

Disney’s parks closed last spring as the pandemic began spreading in the U.S. The Florida parks reopened this summer, but the California parks have yet to reopen as the company awaits guidance from the state of California.

In a letter to employees, Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experience and Product, said California’s “unwillingness to lift restrictions that would allow