This story on the new coronavirus is updated throughout the day with national news and developments from around our network of local Patches. Scroll down for links, helpful to day-to-day living and the most recent stories.
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With thousands of small business owners across the country waiting for relief from the federal government, President Donald Trump said a deal could be announced Monday to add hundreds of billions of dollars to the Paycheck Protection Program.
“I would like to begin by saying we are continuing to negotiate with the Democrats to get our workers and small businesses all over the country taken care of,” Trump said during Sunday’s coronavirus task force briefing. “I think we are getting close to a deal.”
Sunday, the United States passed 40,000 deaths from the coronavirus.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also said Sunday he thinks a deal can be reached soon to add $300 billion for the small business rescue program.
The additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses became necessary after the Small Business Administration reached the $349 billion lending limit approved in the last stimulus package.
Nearly 1.7 million loans have already been approved, and thousands of small business owners whose loans have not yet been processed must now wait for Congress to approve the additional funding.
Mnuchin wasn’t the only Trump administration member making news Sunday. Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, told CBS that health experts still aren’t sure if being infected by the illness will protect those who recover.
“That’s why these studies are going on with plasma and giving plasma to sick patients to really see if that antibody confers protective immunity and help to the individual who is sick, as well as really doing studies with vaccines and looking, seeing whether the antibodies that are produced are effective,” Birx told CBS.
Birx emphasized that health experts weren’t sure if getting the virus meant immunity for a month, six months, or many years.
A few hours after Birx’s comments, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced in his daily briefings that the state will start testing residents for the antibodies that show they have been infected by the coronavirus and recovered from COVID-19.
“We’re going to do that in the most aggressive way in the nation,” he said in the briefing. “The FDA has approved the state’s antibody test. We’re going to be rolling it out to do the largest survey of any state population that has been done.”
NY To Start Antibody Testing For Earned Immunity To Coronavirus
Cuomo’s announcement also comes right after the federal government loosened controls on testing, allowing states’ public labs to do their own instead of relying on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Sunday that coronavirus social distancing violators could face a fine up to $1,000.
“We don’t want to give fines,” de Blasio said in a news briefing. “But this is serious and it’s going to get harder with the fine weather.”
New York City has nearly 130,000 coronavirus cases and 33,079 hospitalizations linked to the disease, Health Department records show.
In other news to come out of the president’s news briefing on Sunday, Trump announced he is planning to use the Defense Production Act again to help with the production of swabs needed to conduct coronavirus tests.
“We also are going to be using and preparing to use the Defense Production Act to increase swab production in one U.S. facility by over 20 million additional swabs per month. We’ve had a little difficulty with one so we’ll call in — as we have in the past, as you know — we are calling in the Defense Production Act and we’ll be getting swabs very easily,” Trump said.
Trump did not specify which company he would compel to make the swabs, but two people familiar with the decision told CNN that the company is Puritan Medical Products, which is based in Maine.
Numbers: Latest U.S. Confirmed Cases And Death
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Hobie and Alicia Cohen have already delivered more than 2,500 face shields to Holy Cross Hospital in Silver Spring and Germantown.
The delayed rollout of testing kits for the new coronavirus in the United States was reportedly traced to an error at the CDC.
Governor Tim Walz today launched a week-long, statewide homemade mask drive to encourage Minnesotans to create homemade masks for donation.
A new Human Rights task force will crack down on novel coronavirus harassment and discrimination in New York City, officials announced.
Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling said his department will no longer enforce Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers “Safer At Home” order, saying that deputies will now “leave the enforcement of public health orders to the health department experts.”
New Jersey governor says it’s his opinion that students will wear masks if they go back to school this year amid the coronavirus crisis.
“Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures, and while we are saddened to take this action, we know it is the right decision.”
Boulder County Public Health epidemiology staff completed the first analysis of how the new coronavirus is impacting minorities.
Democratic lawmakers on Tuesday introduced legislation to compel federal health officials to post data daily that breaks down COVID-19 cases and deaths by race and ethnicity.
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