Trump fans controversy on COVID-19 testing as cases spike worldwide

President Donald Trump sparked a new controversy over the weekend by suggesting that testing more people for the coronavirus has contributed to the U.S. holding the top spot in the world for COVID-19 diagnoses, in the midst of the worst daily case spike the world has seen since the crisis began.

With the world’s largest economy struggling to contain the virus, the president made waves after a rally in Tulsa, where turnout was less than expected. Trump said that when testing is widespread, “you’re going to find more people. So I said to my people, ‘slow the testing down please.’”

White House officials have said the president was kidding, and never directed the coronavirus task force to slow down testing. However, the comments drew widespread criticism, and flew in the face of worrying trends in states like Florida, which despite a slight decrease in testing is seeing cases surge.

Read More

Worldwide count tops 5M as US inches toward reopening; AstraZeneca gets $1B

The global case count hit a new grim milestone Thursday, surpassing 5 million, as the World Health Organization said the virus is showing no signs of slowing down, even as states continue to chart their own individual paths toward relaxing lockdowns.

In the U.S. has surpassed 1.5 million cases with more than 93,000 deaths. Major hotspots like New York and New Jersey — which have announced measures to relax lockdown protocols — are seeing sustained declines in hospitalizations and day-over-day case counts, although the numbers are still rising.

Meanwhile, some states are seeing worrisome gains in hospitalizations and case counts. The decision of how to resume school in the fall is also on the table, as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo took summer session off the table, but left open the question of a fall reopening. The Empire State reported 105 deaths from COVID-19, Cuomo said, calling it “relatively

Read More

J&J eyes ‘imminent’ coronavirus vaccine production, aims for a billion doses worldwide

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) said on Tuesday it plans to begin imminent production of its trial COVID-19 vaccine on an “at risk” basis, as the coronavirus pandemic infects nearly 2 million people around the world.

Manufacturing “at risk” allows the world’s third largest pharmaceutical company to produce a product before its ultimate design is finalized and released to the public. The company plans to produce its COVID-19 vaccine in the Netherlands, and a facility it is updating in the United States.

“We’re manufacturing at risk to ensure that should the clinical development and the trials be successful, we are in a position to kind of flip the switch and ready to go, to create great access across the globe,” J&J CFO Joe Wolk told Yahoo Finance in an interview.

J&J began developing its vaccine for COVID-19 in early January with its European subsidiary Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V. It’s using

Read More

Worldwide infections close in on 2 million as governors mull reopen strategy

The number of people infected by the novel coronavirus worldwide crept closer to 2 million on Tuesday, led by a surging number of confirmed cases in the United States, amid a raucous debate over when the world’s largest economy will relax strict stay at home orders that have shuttered businesses and left over 16 million unemployed.

The center of gravity of the crisis has shifted decisively to the U.S., where testing per capita still lags other regions and new COVID-19 diagnoses rise closing in on 600,000 on 25,000 deaths. Nonetheless, market benchmarks have rallied, in part on expectations that officials will find a way to unfreeze the economy.

“It’s truly astonishing that as global economic growth forecasts are looking bleak and most countries are battling potentially one of the worst downturns in a generation, the markets are on fire and trading as though these are normal times,” said deVere Group

Read More

The coronavirus case count is surging as testing capacity increases worldwide

The coronavirus case count is surging as testing capacity increases worldwide, as the global case count surges past 800,000 and deaths near 40,000 Tuesday. The U.S., which continues to lead the world with more than 170,000 cases, is seeing nearly half of its cases come from New York, with 75,000 positive cases as of Tuesday.

The mounting numbers in the Empire State, especially in New York City, are casting a dark shadow over the country’s health-care system as the city attempts to contain the contagion. Many health workers report that there are not enough supplies, forcing them to make hard choices about whom should be saved.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo outlined a number of possible solutions to the ventilator shortage in a press briefing on Tuesday, includes splitting ventilator tubes so two people can use the same machine, as well as repurposing similar devices, such as anesthesia

Read More