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Live Coronavirus News Updates and Coverage – The New York Times

Live Coronavirus News Updates and Coverage – The New York Times

And within Italy, the Bergamo area, in the devastated Lombardy region, has suffered more than most.

Our reporter and photographer visited Bergamo, which had been a quiet and wealthy province, and followed the Red Cross workers going door to door, carrying away the afflicted to offer a glimpse of what it looks like in the heart of the crisis.

Italy’s staggering toll suggested that its early attempts to stem the outbreak — first isolating towns, then regions, then shutting down the country in a porous lockdown — always lagged behind the virus’s trajectory. And the country’s outbreak has yet to reach its peak, scientists warn.

The virus has also penetrated the high walls of the Vatican.

The Vatican on Tuesday said an official who lives in the pope’s residence has tested positive and required hospitalization. Now the Vatican is testing scores of people and considering isolating measures for Francis, 83, who has tested negative in two separate tests, according to top Vatican officials.

“For weeks now, it has been evening — thick darkness has gathered over our squares, our streets and our cities,” Pope Francis, who had part of his lungs removed during an illness in his youth, said on the steps of St. Peter’s Basilica Friday. “It has taken over our lives.”

Pope Francis also expressed support and appreciation for “doctors, nurses, supermarket employees, cleaners, caregivers, providers of transport, law and order forces, volunteers, priests, religious men and women and so very many others who have understood that no one reaches salvation by themselves.”

The coronavirus mostly infects the lungs, causing pneumonia in severe cases; the typical symptoms are fever, cough and difficulty breathing. But some infected patients, including one recently in Brooklyn, have arrived at the hospital with symptoms not of respiratory disease, but of heart attack.

On close examination, the Brooklyn patient and some others were suffering from acute myocarditis, a severe inflammation of the heart. The condition also has been seen in patients with other viral infections, such as MERS and the H1N1 swine flu. Patients with coronavirus infections and heart complications have a risk of death nearly four times higher than patients without heart complications.

Other doctors have been keeping a close watch on the virus’s impact on the youngest targets. Newborns and babies have so far seemed to be largely unaffected by the coronavirus, but three small new studies suggest that the virus may reach the fetus in utero.

Even in these studies the newborns seem only mildly affected, if at all. That is reassuring, experts said; in theory, the virus could pose a risk to the fetus early in gestation, when the fetal brain is most vulnerable.

“We don’t have any knowledge of that at all, said Dr. Christina Chambers, a perinatal epidemiologist at the University of California in San Diego. “That is a complete open question at this point.”

After four passengers died aboard Holland America’s Zaandam cruise ship, the fate of the vessel became increasingly unclear on Friday night when it was denied permission to cross the Panama Canal. The ship is currently off the southern coast of Panama, conducting an evacuation of healthy passengers to one of the company’s sister ships, the Rotterdam.

The Panama Canal Authority posted an announcement on Twitter saying that new health regulations aimed at preventing contagious diseases would prohibit the Zaandam from crossing the canal.

Both ships had hoped to cross the Panama Canal and head to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., which has not given them permission to dock. The Zaandam was originally scheduled to disembark in Chile on March 21, but the country shut its ports to cruise ships and ultimately closed its borders.

There were 1,243 guests and 586 crew members on board the Zaandam, with passengers from 34 nations. People who are sick as well as their close contacts and all of the crew will remain on the Zaandam, the company said.

Stocks fell on Friday as investors who initially cheered progress on a $2 trillion U.S. aid package saw further economic troubles ahead.

The S&P 500 dropped more than 3 percent on Friday. Stocks in Europe were also lower.

The selling reflected caution ahead of the weekend, when bad news about the virus’s spread or further efforts to contain it could overtake the positive sentiment stirred up by the passage of the stimulus bill, Steven Ricchiuto, the chief economist at Mizuho, said in a note to clients.

“After the stimulus bill passes, and households and companies begin waiting for the government money to start flowing, news stories will resume a more negative tilt,” Mr. Ricchiuto wrote.

All told, it was a relatively good week for stock investors. Even after Friday’s drop, the S&P 500 remains up more than 10 percent this week, after a three-day romp for stocks on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

But the decline on Friday suggests that there is still little clarity on whether the worst is over for the market after weeks in which benchmark indexes collapsed amid violent swings.

South Africa, Africa’s most industrialized nation, ordered most of its 59 million people to stay at home for three weeks starting today. It is by far the biggest and most restrictive action undertaken on the African continent to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

The nationwide lockdown followed an alarming increase in confirmed cases across South Africa’s nine provinces. Three weeks after detecting its first infection, the country is now the center of the pandemic on the continent, with more than 1,000 confirmed cases, double the number of the next hardest-hit country, Egypt.

While the deadly virus was slow to take hold in Africa, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths has gradually increased in recent days, raising fears about the continent’s readiness to deal with a pandemic.

To date, 46 African states have reported a total of 3,243 positive cases and 83 deaths, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

You can take several steps to slow the spread of the coronavirus, and keep yourself safe. Be consistent about social distancing. Wash your hands often. And when you do leave your home for groceries or other essentials, wipe down your shopping cart and be smart about what you are purchasing.

Reporting was contributed by Michael Cooper, Alan Blinder, Julie Bosman, Emily Cochrane, Donald G. McNeil Jr., Maya Salam, David E. Sanger, Maggie Haberman, Annie Karni, Mark Landler, Stephen Castle, John Eligon, Amy Qin, Marc Santora, Megan Specia, Elian Peltier, Raphael Minder, Jason Horowitz, Fabio Bucciarelli, Nikita Stewart, Michael Crowley, Jason Horowitz, Elisabetta Povoledo, Lara Jakes, Jesse Drucker, Abdi Latif Dahir, Vikas Bajaj, Carl Hulse, Steven Lee Myers, , Caitlin Dickerson, Annie Correal, Adam Liptak, Neil MacFarquhar and Frances Robles.

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Mara Gay: Trump’s Comments On Ventilators For NY Left Me ‘Almost Speechless’ | Craig Melvin | MSNBC

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UK to pay 2 million self-employed workers through coronavirus: Times

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Live Coronavirus Updates and Coverage – The New York Times

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U.S. has potential of becoming coronavirus epicenter, says WHO

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Murdochs Failed To Rein In Fox News ‘Hoax’ Narrative Amid Coronavirus: NYT | All In | MSNBC

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