April 15 coronavirus news

By Ben Westcott, Adam Renton, Rob Picheta and Fernando Alfonso III, CNN

Updated 3:17 p.m. ET, April 17, 2020
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9:33 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

US marks most new coronavirus deaths reported in a single day with 2,129

The US coronavirus death toll reached 25,757 on Tuesday evening, an increase of 2,129 deaths today -- the highest number of fatalities in a single day.

Previously, the most US coronavirus deaths reported in a single day was 2,074, on April 10, according to data supplied by Johns Hopkins University.

There are now more than 605,000 cases of the novel coronavirus in the US -- the largest single epidemic worldwide.

CNN is tracking US coronavirus cases here:

9:07 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

UN Secretary General says World Health Organization "must be supported"

From CNN’s Richard Roth

The World Health Organization "must be supported," the UN Secretary General said in a statement Tuesday evening, after US President Donald Trump cut funding to the organization.

"It is my belief that the World Health Organization must be supported, as it is absolutely critical to the world’s efforts to win the war against COVID-19," Antonio Guterres said.
"It is also not the time to reduce the resources for the operations of the World Health Organization or any other humanitarian organization in the fight against the virus,” Guterres added.
"As I have said before, now is the time for unity and for the international community to work together in solidarity to stop this virus and its shattering consequences."
9:39 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

Florida governor says state is receiving 1 million N95 masks

From CNN's Lindsay Benson 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Source: The Florida Channel

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Tuesday that the state will have access to 1 million N95 masks.

"Today, in consultation from the White House, we have received or will receive a total of 1 million N95 masks, those are probably the most sought after piece of PPE right now, there's obviously been a worldwide run on that. Working with the White House, they've earmarked us a million," DeSantis said at a news conference Tuesday.

He said Florida's Emergency Management Department will also be delivering 1.2 million​procedure masks, 100,000 face shields, 500,000 gloves, 60,000 containers of hand sanitizer, and 35,000 gowns.

In total, DeSantis said the state will have distributed:

  • 8 million masks
  • 5.5 million gloves
  • 564,000 shoe covers
  • 615,000 face shields
  • 300,000 gowns
  • More than 100,000 containers of hand sanitizer
  • 47,000 goggles
  • 22,000 coveralls
8:59 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

Trump's trade adviser defends WHO funding halt

From CNN's Betsy Klein 

Trade adviser Peter Navarro at the White House on Thursday, April 2, in Washington.
Trade adviser Peter Navarro at the White House on Thursday, April 2, in Washington. Alex Brandon/AP

US President Donald Trump's trade adviser Peter Navarro appeared on Fox News after the White House briefing to defend the President’s WHO funding halt and discuss how it could impact US-China relations.

“The World Health Organization is a single failure during this epidemic. They basically hid information from the public, they failed to call this a pandemic long after others had rightfully done so. There is blood on their hands. I think President Trump is absolutely correct to have a full investigation of how that happened and what China’s role might’ve been to that," Navarro said.

Pressed on how this could impact future trade negotiations with China, he called those “interesting questions” but went on to talk about supply chains.

Asked again later in the interview how coronavirus will impact the US-China relationship, Navarro said, “We have to find out where it originated. We have to understand why China did not tell us for six weeks in which we lost precious time preparing for a pandemic.”

“This is something we will not forget: China was basically vacuuming up the world’s PPE around the world so that we didn’t have it in New York and people didn’t have it in Milan," he said. "That’s a question that has to be answered. The question going forward is will they provide the PPE to the world as we go through this crisis without strings?”

8:57 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

Honolulu will require everyone to wear facial coverings in public businesses

From CNN's Andy Rose

A woman wears a mask as a precaution against the coronavirus in Honolulu on Tuesday, April 7.
A woman wears a mask as a precaution against the coronavirus in Honolulu on Tuesday, April 7. Caleb Jones/AP

Honolulu will require people to wear facial coverings when visiting essential businesses from Monday. 

Mayor Kirk Caldwell said the new requirement applies to businesses like grocery stores. People will not be required to have a commercially-produced mask, he said.

"It's another layer of protection. It's not perfect," Caldwell said at a news conference on Tuesday.

The mayor said the order does not apply to people working in offices that are not open to the public, although facial coverings are still recommended at those businesses. People also must cover their faces when riding public transportation.

To avoid confusion, Caldwell said there is one major exception to the rule: no one should wear a mask in a bank.

"Usually when people go into a bank with a mask, it's not a good outcome," Caldwell said.
8:51 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

American Medical Association calls Trump's move to put a hold on WHO funding "dangerous"

From CNN’s Michael Nedelman and Jen Christensen

The largest professional association of physicians in the US, the American Medical Association, labeled President Donald Trump’s announcement that he will put a hold on funding for the World Health Organization as “dangerous.”

AMA President Dr. Patrice A. Harris issued a statement today in response to Trump's announcement.

Here's a portion of her statement:

“During the worst public health crisis in a century, halting funding to the World Health Organization (WHO) is a dangerous step in the wrong direction that will not make defeating Covid-19 easier.
Fighting a global pandemic requires international cooperation and reliance on science and data. Cutting funding to the WHO – rather than focusing on solutions – is a dangerous move at a precarious moment for the world. The AMA is deeply concerned by this decision and its wide-ranging ramifications, and we strongly urge the President to reconsider.”

What we know: During a White House news briefing today, Trump announced he will halting funding while a review is conducted.

8:49 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

More people are leaving New York hospitals than arriving, doctor says

From CNN's Rob Frehse

The surgery chair of a New York City hospital says more patients are departing than arriving.

Dr. Craig Smith of the New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center also said the number of patients in the Intensive Care Unit and on ventilators appears to be leveling off at two hospitals that are bearing the brunt of those cases.

Smith wrote these details in a daily note to faculty and staff.

“These trends support our pivot towards restoration of normal,” Smith wrote.

There are also fewer autopsies: Smith said autopsies have become uncommon in most settings, and notes “phone consent is not considered acceptable”

“We have very little idea why Covid-19 is so lethal and resistant to treatment in certain patients,” Smith said. “Autopsy in Covid mortalities has a relatively high probability of contributing to the advancement of medical science."

He added: "Because phone consent is not considered acceptable -- a significant hurdle when visitors are not allowed. We are pursuing solutions to that unintended consequence of an administrative policy that was less often objectionable pre-pandemic.”

8:57 p.m. ET, April 14, 2020

Trump halts US funding to World Health Organization  

From CNN's Elise Hammond

US President Donald Trump and World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
US President Donald Trump and World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. AFP and Bloomberg

US President Donald Trump announced Tuesday he is halting funding to the World Health Organization while a review is conducted.

Trump said at a news conference the review would cover the WHO’s “role in severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of coronavirus.”

The President said that while the US imposed travel restrictions on China during the early stages of the outbreak, the WHO was "opposed to what we did."

"Other nations and regions who followed WHO guidelines and kept their borders open to China, accelerated the pandemic around the world," Trump said.

Trump continued: "The decision of other major countries to keep travel open was one of the great tragedies and missed opportunities from the early days."