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Washington Coronavirus Updates Paused Until Tuesday Afternoon

SEATTLE, WA — A glitch in Washington’s coronavirus reporting system kept the state from releasing coronavirus updates for a second day, officials announced Monday.

On Sunday, the Washington State Department of Health said a data processing issue prevented its dashboards from reflecting up-to-date information. Full reporting had been expected to resume the next day. But on Monday afternoon, the state said it would require another day to complete the fix.

On October 11, the Washington State Department of Health discovered a data issue that required a rollback of the COVID-19 data dashboard to include only data current as of 11:59 p.m. on 10/9/2020. We will need until tomorrow to fully test and implement required revisions and update this dashboard. This issue also means that the COVID-19 risk assessment dashboard reflects data current as of 11:59 p.m. on 10/8/2020.

We plan to update both dashboards tomorrow afternoon (10/13/2020). We apologize for any confusion this delay may cause.

As of 11:59 p.m. Friday, 93,035 patients had tested positive in the state since the crisis began, and at least 2,190 people have died from complications linked to COVID-19. Over the last seven days, 3,988 new illnesses have been confirmed in Washington, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s case tracker.

Despite ongoing issues on the state level, county-level reporting remains functional. In King County, Public Health reported 152 new cases Monday as several “key indicators” continued to trend in the wrong direction.

In recent weeks, the state’s most populous county briefly fell to the low end of the moderate range for case counts reported over 14 days. But the latest update shows King County back above the threshold for the highest bracket, at 86 cases per 100,000 residents, and well above the target range. Public Health – Seattle & King County has scheduled a Tuesday afternoon news conference to discuss COVID-19 spread.

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Here are the statewide totals, broken down by county, from the last available update:

County

Confirmed Cases

Hospitalizations

Deaths

Adams

887

52

10

Asotin

146

16

5

Benton

4,797

402

132

Chelan

1,908

76

16

Clallam

243

8

1

Clark

3,667

305

69

Columbia

14

3

1

Cowlitz

719

44

7

Douglas

1,202

60

9

Ferry

30

1

0

Franklin

4,476

319

66

Garfield

13

0

0

Grant

3,115

158

23

Grays Harbor

573

39

11

Island

330

38

12

Jefferson

76

11

0

King

23,805

2,492

784

Kitsap

1,356

107

16

Kittitas

593

24

22

Klickitat

202

11

3

Lewis

621

45

8

Lincoln

63

3

1

Mason

464

25

8

Okanogan

1,069

48

10

Pacific

95

8

3

Pend Oreille

104

7

0

Pierce

8,648

894

210

San Juan

29

2

0

Skagit

1,160

99

22

Skamania

65

6

1

Snohomish

7,434

836

218

Spokane

7,830

534

178

Stevens

213

19

3

Thurston

1,269

113

20

Wahkiakum

7

0

0

Walla Walla

945

57

6

Whatcom

1,448

102

48

Whitman

1,509

12

1

Yakima

11,566

802

263

Unassigned

344

8

3

Total

93,035

Washington Post board urges more transparency on Trump health: ‘No more spin doctors’



a group of people standing in front of a building: Washington Post board urges more transparency on Trump health: 'No more spin doctors'


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Washington Post board urges more transparency on Trump health: ‘No more spin doctors’

The Washington Post’s editorial board on Friday called for the White House to be more transparent about the state of President Trump’s health, demanding “more than spin doctors.”

“All presidents like to project robust health and are loath to admit weakness, even if caused by events beyond their control.” the board wrote in an opinion piece, citing when President Reagan was shot in 1981.

“But when a president’s health is abnormal, the public has a right to know, especially if the problem has any effect on his fitness to perform his duties. In Mr. Trump’s case, the unanswered questions are glaring,” they continued.

Trump was brought to the Walter Reed Medical Center on Friday, Oct. 2, just hours after announcing that both he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for the coronavirus.

The next day, doctors offered a rosy assessment of Trump’s health during a televised briefing. But statements The Associated Press and other outlets later attributed to White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and other sources gave a more alarming account of the president’s health.

The White House later acknowledged that Trump had received oxygen as he was being treated for COVID-19 after White House physician Sean Conley initially sidestepped answering on the topic. Conley maintained the team briefing on Trump’s condition wasn’t “necessarily” trying to “hide” anything from the public.

Conley later disclosed during a briefing with reporters that Trump received supplemental oxygen after his diagnosis.

When asked why he had been reluctant to disclose whether Trump had received oxygen, Conley said he was “trying to reflect the upbeat attitude that the team, the president, that his course of illness has had.”

This week, Conley repeatedly ducked more questions about Trump’s health and the timeline of his infection, even though Trump was deemed well enough to leave the hospital and return to the White House.

The Washington Post board noted that Trump had a packed schedule the week before his coronavirus diagnosis, which included introducing his Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett in a White House Rose Garden event.

The White House has battled a spate of recent COVID-19 diagnoses among staff, leading Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, to describe what he called a “superspreader event” at the White House.

According to a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) memo obtained by ABC News this week, 34 White House staffers and “other contacts” have been infected with the coronavirus in recent days.

“Leadership matters, and Mr. Trump has been calamitously unable to provide it. In the pandemic, he offered glib reassurances when the nation needed realism,” The Post’s editorial concluded. “On the question of his personal health, a matter of public interest, we need more than spin doctors. We need real doctors providing real information.”

Trump plans to hold an in-person event at the White House on Saturday, two officials confirmed to The Hill, his first

Trump Hails Experimental Treatment for His Virus Recovery | Washington, D.C. News

By AAMER MADHANI, JILL COLVIN and MATTHEW PERRONE, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump credited an experimental drug treatment with helping his recovery from COVID-19 and suggested his diagnosis could be a “blessing in disguise” in the nation’s battle against the pandemic. But there is no way for the president or his doctors to know whether the drug had any effect.

In a new White House video posted Wednesday evening, Trump said his illness had shed light on an experimental antibody cocktail that he tied to his improved condition. Seemingly sensitive to the fact that his treatment course has been far more comprehensive than the care received by average Americans, he promised to swiftly get the drug approved for broader use — and distribute it for free — even though he does not have the power to order that himself.

“I want everybody to be given the same treatment as your president, because I feel great,” Trump said in a video from the Rose Garden. “I feel, like, perfect.”

Still, questions continue to swirl about the trajectory of Trump’s recovery and when he might be able to return to normal activities, including campaigning, less than four weeks before Election Day. The video marked Trump’s first appearance before a camera — albeit a White House-operated one —in nearly two days. The White House has released only limited details about his condition and treatment, leading to questions about what lies ahead for Trump.

Trump received an experimental antiviral cocktail made by Regeneron through a “compassionate use” exemption, a recognition of the above-and-beyond standard of care he receives as president. The safety and effectiveness of the drug have not yet been proven. And there is no way for the president or his doctors to know that the drug had any effect. Most people recover from COVID-19.

It’s not the first time the president has trumpeted an unproven treatment. He spent months painting the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine as a miracle treatment for the virus — taking a preventative course himself — even though experts have said it is not effective against COVID-19.

Trump hailed the Regeneron cocktail even as drugmaker Eli Lilly moves forward with its own similar treatment.

Eli Lilly formally asked the Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday to allow emergency use of its experimental antibody based on early results suggesting it reduces symptoms. There is no timetable for the FDA to make a decision, though the agency has moved on such applications within weeks.

Lilly says it could supply as many as 1 million doses of its therapy in the final quarter of 2020, with 100,000 available in October. Regeneron confirms it has also applied for emergency authorization, and said Wednesday it has enough doses for approximately 50,000 patients, and expects 300,000 available within the next few months.

The company said this advance production would allow the treatment to be distributed “immediately” if it were authorized by the FDA.

In the video, Trump continued to play down the threat

The Washington Post to serve as media partner for National Press Club’s Help The Heroes campaign

The Washington Post to serve as media partner for National Press Club’s Help The Heroes campaign

PR Newswire

WASHINGTON, Oct. 7, 2020

WASHINGTON, Oct. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The National Press Club announced at a recent news conference that The Washington Post would serve as an official media partner for the Club’s Help The Heroes campaign, a program designed to help front line medical workers at Howard University Hospital and feed the fight against COVID-19 by providing hospital staff with nutritious take-home meals.

The Washington Post to serve as media partner for National Press Club’s Help The Heroes campaign
The Washington Post to serve as media partner for National Press Club’s Help The Heroes campaign

The Washington Post has pledged to contribute advertising support for the campaign, including a full-page ad that ran in today’s newspaper.

“Help The Heroes is all about neighbors helping neighbors in this time of need,” said National Press Club President Michael Freedman. “So we are grateful and honored to have the backing and support of The Washington Post – one of the most respected newspapers in the country and a pillar of the DC community.”

According to a recent article in The Washington Post, hospitals are preparing for a nightmare scenario this fall when flu patients and COVID-19 patients may swamp hospital wards. There is appropriate concern that this will exhaust the staff. “I worry the most about the ability of the workforce to step into the ring again. Adrenaline can only take you so far,” said Dr. Brandan Carr of Mount Sinai Hospital. 

Help The Heroes is funded by donations from corporations, foundations and non-profits. Donations for Help The Heroes go to the National Press Club Journalism Institute, the Club’s affiliated 501c-3. To learn more about Help The Heroes or to make a contribution, please visit: http://www.press.org/hth 

Founded in 1908, the National Press Club is The World’s Leading Professional Organization for Journalists with more than 3,000 members. The Club speaks out on press freedom issues and annually recognizes journalists at risk at home and abroad with the John Aubuchon Award for Press Freedom.

PRESS CONTACT: Lindsay Underwood for the National Press Club; [email protected]

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Washington Reports 7 More Deaths, 387 New Coronavirus Cases

SEATTLE, WA — State health officials reported seven new deaths and 455 additional coronavirus cases in Washington on Tuesday, with the highest daily case counts in King, Spokane and Snohomish counties.

Per the latest available information, 90,663 patients have tested positive in the state since the crisis began, and 2,165 people have died from complications linked to COVID-19. At least 3,638 new illnesses have been confirmed in Washington over the last seven days, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s case tracker.

Most Washington counties still show a rate of cases by population higher than the target threshold of 25 cases per 100,000 residents over 14 days. At least 17 of the state’s counties remain in the highest transmission bracket, while 10 counties are in the moderate range.

As of Tuesday, health labs had processed more than 1.96 million tests in Washington since the public health crisis began.

Trump halts stimulus negotiations until after the election

In a series of tweets Tuesday, President Donald Trump said he ordered an end to negotiations for a new stimulus plan, as the Democrats sought a second wave of federal assisance, including fresh $1,200 payments and restoration of the weekly $600 in expanded unemployment benefits. Negotiations between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had been underway for days.

The Democrats’ latest plan was estimated at $2.4 trillion, which the White House rejected as too high. Earlier Tuesday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell had recommended more aggressive federal help to prevent a weak economic recovery. The stock market took a hit in the wake of Trump’s announcement and stayed down through the closing bell.

Inslee relaxes some restrictions on restaurants, movie theaters, libraries and more

Gov. Jay Inslee on Tuesday adjusted restrictions for several industries, relaxing the rules for indoor dining, movie theaters, real estate, libraries and some sports.

“We wanted to do targeted things where we show how to do this in a safe way,” Inslee said in a news conference. “I think increasingly the way we need to think about this is not so much as prohibitions about what you can’t do, but adaptations to show how we can do something safely.”

Among the most notable changes are an elimination of the household requirement for indoor dining, and a slight increase in the permitted table size at restaurants. The state’s cutoff for serving alcohol will move from 10 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Movie theaters will be allowed to reopen at 25 percent capacity in Phase 2 counties and 50 percent capacity in Phase 3. All guests will be required to maintain physical distance with people outside their household and wear face coverings at all times when not eating or drinking.

Under the new guidance, libraries will be allowed to operate similar to museums, permitting some indoor activity in phase 2 counties, with 25 percent capacity.

Adult and youth sports, including soccer, softball, tennis, flag football and lacrosse, could be allowed to resume depending on the specific

FDA guidance – The Washington Post

One of the pharmaceutical companies at the forefront of efforts to develop a vaccine, Pfizer, on Tuesday declared its support for the agency in its struggle with the White House. Albert Bourla, the company’s chief executive, said on Twitter, “Pfizer has never discussed [FDA’s] vaccine guidelines with the White House and will never do so as it could undermine the agency’s independence.” He said the agency’s independence “is today more important than ever as public trust in [coronavirus] vaccine development has been eroded by the politicization of the process.”

The delayed clearance by the White House occurred days after President Trump accused the FDA of being “political” in fashioning the guidance and after The Washington Post reported that White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows was demanding detailed justification from the agency about the criteria. Meadows’s action raised fears the White House would thwart or block standards designed to boost public trust in a vaccine, according to people familiar with the situation who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

The FDA, as requested, provided the White House with additional data, but nothing happened, according to a senior administration official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they did not have permission to talk publicly about the issue. On Tuesday, tired of the delay, the FDA circumvented the White House by publishing the criteria online as part of a briefing package for a meeting with its vaccine advisory committee that is scheduled for Oct. 22.

Shortly after the standards were published, the White House approved the vaccine guidance, according to the official.

The guidance is far more rigorous than what was used for emergency clearance of hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malaria drug used in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, or convalescent plasma, which is taken from people who have recovered from covid-19 and whose antibodies might offer a measure of protection to other patients. It is an effort to shore up confidence in the vaccine development process and the FDA, which has made missteps during the pandemic.

The guidelines recommend that participants in late-stage vaccine clinical trials be followed for a median of at least two months, starting after they receive a second vaccine shot — which experts said could make it difficult, though not impossible, for a vaccine to be authorized before the election.

The Post reported Sept. 22 that the FDA was poised to issue a tough new standard for an emergency authorization of a coronavirus vaccine. As a sign the vaccine works, the agency said it would want to see at least five severe cases of covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, in the placebo group for each trial, and some cases of the disease in older people. Assuming there weren’t cases — or not as many — in the group receiving the vaccine, that would be a signal that a shot is working.

At a news conference Sept. 23, Trump said the FDA plan sounded like “a political move”

George Washington University Hospital recovers from cyberattack that forced operations offline

The IT network and medical record system at GWU Hospital were restored this week and the facility’s online applications are being reconnected, Jane Crawford, a UHS spokeswoman, said in an email. The hospital had its systems taken offline shortly after the cyberattack was detected.

Staff at the hospital relied on offline record-keeping while UHS dealt with the attack that affected some of the system’s clinical and financial operations, officials from the national hospital chain said.

Patients’ electronic medical records were not directly affected by the cyberattack, according to a statement issued Monday. There also was no indication that employee data had been accessed.

Crawford did not immediately respond to a request to comment on reports that the hospital chain was hit by ransomware. But the Associated Press reported that the company’s description of the attack is consistent with the type of malware where data can only be restored with software keys after ransoms are paid.

UHS this week has made “substantial progress toward restoration of online operations” across its U.S.-based hospitals, outpatient clinics and behavioral health centers, according to the statement issued Monday. The cyberattack did not affect UHS’s facilities based in the United Kingdom, officials said in the statement.

Despite the network troubles that affected UHS, staff at the Foggy Bottom hospital were still able to treat patients safely, officials said.

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Trump Has ‘No Symptoms,’ Returns to Downplaying Virus | Washington, D.C. News

By ZEKE MILLER, JILL COLVIN and AAMER MADHANI, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump, said to be making progress in his recovery from COVID-19, expressed eagerness to return to the campaign trail Tuesday even as the outbreak that has killed more than 210,000 Americans reached ever more widely into the upper echelons of the U.S. government.

As Trump convalesced out of sight in the White House, the administration defended the protections it has put in place to protect the staff working there to treat and support him. Trump again publicly played down the virus on Twitter after his return from a three-day hospitalization.

In one significant national coronavirus action, he declared there would be no action on economic-stimulus legislation — an announcement that came not long after the Federal Reserve chairman said such help was essential for recovery with the nation reeling from the human and economic cost of the pandemic. Stocks fell on the White House news.

As for Trump’s own recovery, his doctor, Navy Cmdr. Sean Conley, said in a letter that the president had a “restful” night at the White House and “reports no symptoms.”

Meanwhile, Trump was grappling with next political steps exactly four weeks from Election Day. Anxious to project strength, Trump, who is still contagious with the virus, tweeted Tuesday morning that he was planning to attend next Thursday’s debate with Democrat Joe Biden in Miami and “It will be great!”

Elsewhere in the government, the scope of the outbreak was still being uncovered. On Tuesday, the nation’s top military leaders including the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Mark Milley, and the vice chairman, Gen. John Hyten, were in quarantine after exposure to Adm. Charles W. Ray, the vice commandant of the Coast Guard.

It was not known how Ray contracted the virus, but he attended an event for military families at the White House on Sept. 27. The Coast Guard said in a statement that Ray felt mild symptoms over the weekend and was tested on Monday.

Trump on Monday made clear that he has little intention of abiding by best containment practices, when he removed his mask before entering the White House after his discharge from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Waiting aides were visible when he entered the Blue Room without a face covering.

Trump’s attitude alarmed infectious disease experts. And it suggested his own illness had not caused him to rethink his often-cavalier attitude toward the disease, which has also infected the first lady and more than a dozen White House aides and associates.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins said Tuesday, “When I saw him on the balcony of the White House, taking off his mask, I couldn’t help but think that he sent the wrong signal, given that he’s infected with COVID-19 and that there are many people in his immediate circle who have the virus,.”

Trump, for his part, falsely suggested that the virus was akin to the seasonal flu.

“Many people every

Washington Records 90,000th Confirmed Coronavirus Case

WASHINGTON — As of the latest update from the Washington State Department of Health, Washington has had 90,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus since the pandemic began.

The DOH’s update Monday afternoon added 402 new laboratory-confirmed coronavirus cases and 16 deaths, for a total of 90,276 infected and 2,158 dead due to the pandemic thus far.

Deaths were reported in Grant, King, Lewis, Mason, Snohomish, Spokane, Whatcom, and Yakima counties.

The new numbers mean that, across the state, 78 out of every 100,000 Washingtonians have tested positive for the virus over the past two weeks. The state still has a long way to meet its goal of getting that rate to under 25 per 100,000 over two weeks.

Meanwhile, 1,951,407 coronavirus tests have been performed in Washington state. Over the past week, 3.3 percent of tests have come back positive, up from the same time last week. The state’s goal there is to test widely enough that that number falls below 2 percent.

The state is, however, succeeding on two of its key metrics: less than 80 percent of hospital beds are occupied, and less than 10 percent of hospital beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients.

Catch up on the latest development:

Inslee: Trumps’ coronavirus message “reckless” and “dangerous”

President Trump’s recent stint in the hospital for coronavirus treatment, and his subsequent recovery and return to the White House Monday evening have Republicans and the Trump Administration running a victory lap, and claiming that response to the pandemic has been overblown— a message that health officials categorically deny.

Monday Washington Gov. Jay Inslee weighed in, condemning Trump’s continued attempts to downplay the severity of the pandemic:

“The president’s reckless comments reflect exactly the same nonsense thinking behind his failed pandemic response that increased the risk of COVID, a virus that has caused 210,000 deaths in the United States already — and hundreds more each day. He hasn’t learned a thing. Since he tested positive for COVID, more than 2,000 additional Americans have died and downplaying this danger is the best he can do?”

Inslee’s statement was echoed by a similar release from Washington’s top health official, Secretary of Health John Wiesman:

“The president’s tweet is highly irresponsible and makes every public health official’s job that much more difficult. COVID-19 is a serious disease that is easily spread. We shouldn’t fear it; we should protect ourselves from it. Wear your mask. Watch your distance. Wash your hands. These are the basic facts.”

Read more: Inslee: Trump ‘Hasn’t Learned A Thing’ After Catching Coronavirus

UW Medicine Studies COVID-19’s Long-Term Effects

UW Medicine is helping to lead a nationwide study to discover more about the long-term impacts of the coronavirus, specifically why some patients experience extremely prolonged symptoms.

Over recent months there have been a growing number of reports of patients who have recovered from the virus, only to return to the hospital later with similar symptoms of fatigue and shortness of breath.

“We want to understand the long-term effects of

remembrance-chairs-on-ellipse – The Washington Post

But despite all their precautions, Walter and his father, John, both contracted the novel coronavirus, and after a 19-day battle in the hospital, John Walter died May 10.

On Sunday, Walter was one of nearly two dozen people directly affected by the novel coronavirus to mourn the more than 200,000 American who have been killed by the disease and push for a national plan for recovery.

They gathered on the grassy Ellipse just south of the White House and in proximity to the Rose Garden, where those attending President Trump’s announcement of his Supreme Court nominee flouted recommendations on wearing masks and social distancing. Trump and at least seven other people who attended the Sept. 26 ceremony have since tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials fear even more cases could result from the event.

“It’s very important we get the message across that this is not a hoax or a conspiracy or a fake illness,” Walter said. “Just because it hasn’t affected you personally doesn’t mean it’s not real. The events of last weekend prove that you can be isolated for a while, but if you make one wrong move, the virus could get you.”

Walter looked at 20,000 empty black chairs that had been placed on the Ellipse over the weekend, each representing 10 people in the United States who have died of covid-19. The U.S. coronavirus death toll soared past 200,000 last month, and Covid Survivors for Change, a network aimed at helping those affected by the virus locate support groups and other resources, declared Sunday a national day of remembrance.

The group recruited local volunteers to set up the installation. They began removing the chairs after the event Sunday.

Those who spoke reflected the myriad ways the pandemic has shaken people’s lives: a Virginia teacher who worried for the health of her students. A Black entrepreneur who is struggling to get by. An emergency room nurse who was hospitalized with the virus and lost her brother to covid-19 weeks later.

While each speaker’s story was different, their message was the same: The pandemic is far from over, and a national strategy with cohesive leadership is the only way to prevent another 200,000 deaths.

“When I watched that Rose Garden event I was horrified. I saw children and adults and elderly people all unmasked and not socially distanced, against all recommendations we have,” said Dara Kass, an emergency medicine physician and associate professor of emergency medicine at Columbia University Medical Center.

“When I think of the 200,000 who have died, and all the people who will be infected because of how his administration behaved, it continues to disappoint me not only as a doctor, but as an American,” she said.

Kass, who spoke Sunday, said she was especially concerned about those who went to the Rose Garden ceremony and didn’t immediately self-quarantine, even after it became apparent someone in attendance was infected. Attorney General William P. Barr decided not to self-quarantine even though he was exposed