Coronavirus pandemic in the US

By Meg Wagner and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 8:33 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020
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6:35 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

There are more than 890,000 coronavirus cases in the US

There are at least 890,524 cases of coronavirus in the US and at least 51,107 people have died, according to Johns Hopkins University's tally of cases

On Friday, Johns Hopkins tallied 21,579 new cases and 1,130 reported deaths. 

The totals includes cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories.

6:29 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

California State Fair and Food Festival canceled due to coronavirus

From CNN's Sarah Moon

The 2020 California State Fair and Food Festival has been cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic, event organizers announced in a press release Friday.

This year’s event, which was scheduled for July 17-August 2 at Cal Expo in Sacramento, would have been the 166th year of the award-winning fair. This is the first time the annual California State Fair has been canceled since WWII, Cal Expo said.

“It’s clear the impact of Covid-19 will continue to be felt for the foreseeable future and that large gatherings should be postponed at this time,” Cal Expo general manager and CEO Rick Pickering said in a statement. “Cancelling this summer’s California State Fair is the right thing to do, and is in line with the measured, scientific approach that’s been implemented by the governor and health officials to fight Covid-19."

More than 700,000 people were expected to attend this year’s event, according to Cal Expo Deputy General Manager Margaret Mohr. The cancelation of the fair has a huge economic impact on Cal Expo and the region, she added. 

Cal Expo hires over 800 seasonal employees for the event each year.

The venue for the event currently serves as a drive-thru coronavirus testing site, as well as a temporary emergency isolation trailer facilities for the homeless population, according to the press release.

“California Exposition and State Fair is a proud member of the statewide community and we will continue to do our part to combat COVID-19,” Pickering said.

6:27 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

Connecticut governor calls Trump's comments on disinfectant "dangerous"

From CNN's Laura Dolan

CT Network
CT Network

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont slammed President Trump for his comments Thursday which suggested that disinfectant could be a treatment for coronavirus.

"It’s incredibly unfortunate when somebody in such a position of power with a bully pulpit makes flip comments like that about ingesting these disinfectants and cleaning products and Lysol and such. It's absolutely wrong, it's dangerous," he said.

Lamont added: "And I urge each and every one of you, don't even take it as a bit of humor and sarcasm. Make sure your kids know that this is something that's dangerous and should not be allowed.”

6:11 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

Florida is in no rush to reopen, governor says

From CNN's Rosa Flores and Sara Weisfeldt

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has not set a deadline for when to reopen the state.

“I’m not concerned about specific dates as much as I’m concerned about getting it right,” DeSantis said at a news conference Friday.

The governor’s Reopen Task Force was scheduled to deliver their recommendations to DeSantis today.

DeSantis said he plans to take a look at the task force’s recommendations through the weekend and then roll out the plan in the “next many days.”

“When that [the reopening] would start has absolutely not been determined yet,” DeSantis said.

6:13 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

FDA approves first at-home COVID-19 test kit

From CNN's Jason Hoffman 

FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn
FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn Pool

President Trump announced the Food and Drug Administration has approved the first at-home COVID-19 test kit this week during the White House press briefing.

FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn said the at-home test was developed by LabCorp.

Hahn said the test would require a doctor's referral. 

“This is a test where under certain circumstances with the doctor's supervision, a test can be mailed to a patient and they can perform the self-swab and then mail it back and get the results after that time, all under the guidance of a licensed physician,” Hahn said.
6:00 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

Pence says more than 5 million Americans have received a coronavirus test


Vice President Mike Pence says the US has tested roughly 5.1 million Americans for coronavirus.

This update was provided moments ago during the White House coronavirus task force briefing.

"As of this morning, 5.1 million Americans have been tested for the coronavirus," Pence said. "As testing increases dramatically across the country, cases will increase as well. But people should not be discouraged by those numbers."
5:46 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

New York City reports 10,746 confirmed coronavirus deaths

From CNN's Rob Frehse

New York City has 10,746 confirmed coronavirus deaths and 5,102 probable coronavirus deaths, according to the city website.

The New York City Health Department defines probable deaths as people who did not have a positive Covid-19 laboratory test but their death certificate lists as the cause of death “Covid-19” or an equivalent.

CNN reached out to the department Friday afternoon for an explanation on why the probable deaths dropped by 19 compared to yesterday.

The total number of confirmed coronavirus deaths and probable coronavirus deaths in New York City is 15,848.

There have been 146,139 coronavirus cases in the city and approximately 37,995 people have been hospitalized, according to the city.

5:48 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

Washington state governor blasts Trump for not using Defense Production Act

From CNN's Konstantin Toropin

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, speaking about the shortages of personal protective equipment in his state, slammed Trump for delaying his use of the Defense Production Act.

"As you also know, I have been very robust in urging the President to get off the dime and start producing some PPE with the Defense Production Act," Inlsee said. "Unfortunately he waited weeks before he did that and so we've been delayed."

The DPA gives Trump authority not only to order private companies to produce and expedite production of certain essential items — in this case, ventilators, masks and other essential medical resources — but also to allocate such materials. 

"We've not had supplies that we would have liked and Republican and Democrat governors share that view and have for some period of time," Inlsee added.

He said the federal government is "starting to do a little more work to produce more PPE and we're grateful for that" but he stressed that "we need to continue to ramp up the manufacturing."

Washington has 85 million pieces of PPE that are "in the queue or in the supply chain" to the state, he said. Inlsee added that private businesses and prisons have also been working to make PPE for the state as well.

5:42 p.m. ET, April 24, 2020

Florida to allow pharmacists to test for Covid-19

From CNN’s Rosa Flores and Sara Weisfeldt

The Floriday Channel
The Floriday Channel

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has instructed his surgeon general to give licensed pharmacists the power to order and administer Covid-19 tests.

The governor made the announcement during a news conference Friday.

DeSantis said the effort is a step towards making testing more “simple” and “accessible” in Florida.