Coronavirus pandemic in the US

By Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes and Elise Hammond, CNN

Updated 9:02 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020
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2:10 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

Rhode Island residents will be required to wear masks in public starting Friday, governor says

From CNN’s Mirna Alsharif

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo announced today that she will sign an executive order directing all residents to wear a cloth face mask in a public place.

The order will go in to effect Friday. 

Raimondo said residents in indoor or outdoor public places will have to wear face coverings, with an exception for children, the "developmentally unable" and those with underlying breathing conditions that will make it difficult to wear a mask. 

By the numbers: Raimondo also reported 281 new coronavirus cases and 14 deaths in the state, adding that hospitalizations and Covid-19 cases are "flattening out."

"In the context of Covid-19 crisis, I feel good about where we are," Raimondo said. 

As of Tuesday, the state has a total of 9,933 positive Covid-19 cases and 355 deaths. 

5:17 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

Gold’s Gym CEO on bankruptcy filing: This gives us a chance to restructure to get through pandemic

CNN's Maureen Chowdhury

Gold’s Gym is filing for bankruptcy after closing 30 corporate locations.

CEO Adam Zeitsiff says franchises are not impacted and that the closings are only for company owned locations.

“This is strictly focused on our company and giving us a chance to restructure and get through this pandemic,” Zeitsiff told CNN’s John King.

Gold's Gym said in a statement that it's "absolutely not going anywhere" and doesn't intend to permanently close any more gyms than the 30 it shuttered last month.

1:43 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

Louisiana reporting the lowest number of patients on ventilators since March 25

From CNN’s Kay Jones

For the first time since March 25, Louisiana has less than 200 patients with Covid-19 on ventilators.

Today's report by the Louisiana Department of Health showed that people hospitalized with the virus went up slightly to 1,512 while the total ventilator usage dropped by 26 to 194.

Statewide numbers: The total number of cases in the state went up over the past day, bringing the total number of cases to 29,996.

The number of deaths is now at 2,042, up 51 from Monday's report. 

1:31 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

New Jersey reports more than 2,000 new cases of coronavirus

From CNN's Elizabeth Hartfield

Gov. Phil Murphy
Gov. Phil Murphy Pool

New Jersey reported 2,494 new cases of Covid-19 on Tuesday, bringing the statewide total to 130,593, Gov. Phil Murphy said.

The governor cautioned that there are still some “lagging results” from the past couple of days, so the numbers could change. 

The state is also reporting 334 new deaths. New Jersey has now reported a total of 8,244 total coronavirus-related deaths.

New Jersey has seen a slow-down in the rate of new cases reported, Murphy said, and hospitalizations have started to tick down as well.

Hospitalizations: At least 5,328 patients are currently being treated in hospitals – a decrease of nearly 3,000 over the last three weeks. There has also been one full week of declining numbers of patients being treated in intensive care units, with about 1,534 patients currently being treated.

Murphy cautioned, however, that there is still a ways to go before the state can fully reopen safely.

“This is the fight of our lives, it’s not two dimensional,” Murphy said.

1:27 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

Antibody tests will be available at drive-through testing sites, Florida governor says

From CNN’s Lindsay Benson


Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced today that antibody tests will be deployed to drive-through testing sites. 

"We're also going to be announcing this week the deployment of antibody tests at our drive-through testing facilities. So the antibody tests test whether your body has developed antibodies which means that you have had the disease in the past," DeSantis said. 

The governor said they've "already received 200,000 antibody tests for serological testing."

"We've done a survey of all the hospitals that may need some, so we're going to send them to any hospital that wants it, clearly it's important for the doctors and the nurses. So we're going to do that, and then we're going to have lanes dedicated to antibody testing at our drive-through sites," DeSantis said.

"We're also going to likely do our own state of Florida study where we can try to determine the prevalence in different parts of the state," he added.

1:25 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

"Many millions" of doses of vaccine in human trials could be available by end of year, CEO BioNTech says

From CNN's Lindsay Isaac


An experimental coronavirus vaccine entering into human trials in the US, could be available in “many millions” of doses by the end of 2020, the CEO of BioNTech told CNN. 

The German drug maker has partnered with US giant Pfizer to distribute a potential vaccine which is already in human trials in Germany. Uğur Şahin believes the regulatory approval process could be sped up from what is historically an 18-month time frame due to the global pandemic. 

“So the approval of any drug is based on the evaluation of a potential benefit and remaining risk," Şahin told CNN. "The benefit of a vaccine in a pandemic situation is much greater and therefore an approval or an authorization of a vaccine in a pandemic situation has to follow other rules than we have seen in the past."

He believes Covid-19 will be responsive to a vaccine which is he calls the “most important aspect” of vaccine development. He said the second aspect is the “very encouraging” preclinical data.

“We see vaccine responses, we see strong vaccine responses at even low doses. And we believe that this vaccine response, since we have seen that in different animal models will also translate into vaccine responses in human subjects," he said. 

If it is approved by the regulators, Sahin said the partners are “prepared to go as fast as possible" to get the vaccine to the population.

1:06 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

Miami-Dade Police have issued 459 violations and made 1 arrest since reopening parks

From CNN's Rosa Flores and Sara Weisfeldt

A Miami-Dade police officer directs traffic on May 2, as hundreds of cars and trucks hauling boats lined up waiting to get into Blackpoint Marina in Homestead, Florida.
A Miami-Dade police officer directs traffic on May 2, as hundreds of cars and trucks hauling boats lined up waiting to get into Blackpoint Marina in Homestead, Florida. David Goodhue/Miami Herald/AP

Since the reopening of parks last Wednesday, Miami-Dade Police have issued 459 violations and has made one arrest, according to the department’s press office.

According to the department, the violations included verbal warnings for noncompliance of reopening rules, like wearing masks, social distancing, no picnics and no large gatherings. Strict operation hours are also enforced. In one case, there were about 30 people congregated at a park taking graduation pictures, per police.

As for the arrest, Miami-Dade Police say a 35-year-old man was arrested Saturday at Hobie Beach for resisting an officer without violence and a health and safety violation, two misdemeanors. Police say the man was running with his dog on a closed beach. An officer told the man to run on the pavement. Later, the officer saw the same man with his dog on the waterline. At that point, the man provided the officer with a fake name and ignored the officer’s command, per police.

Miami-Dade Police say there is no booking photo because the man was issued a promise to appear.

According to MDPD no parks have been closed in the county due to non-compliance by park goers.

Yesterday, Miami Beach Police announced it had issued nearly 8,000 warnings over the weekend for people violating social distancing and face mask rules. Miami Beach Police announced the closure of South Pointe Park until further notice, due to non-compliance.

Miami Beach is in Miami-Dade County.

1:02 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

Schools should be ready for phased reopening and more closures later, pediatrics group says

From CNN’s Maggie Fox

 A classroom sits empty at Kent Middle School on April 01, in Kentfield, California.
 A classroom sits empty at Kent Middle School on April 01, in Kentfield, California. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/FILE

Schools should be ready to reopen in phases, perhaps starting with reduced hours, before returning to full activity amid the coronavirus pandemic, a large pediatricians’ group said Tuesday.

Schools should also plan for intermittent closures in the future if the virus begins to rebound, the American Academy of Pediatrics said in new guidance.

So far, 46 states and Washington, DC, have announced school closures through the end of the academic year. Four more states have widespread closures but have not decided whether to cancel the rest of the school year.

A lot depends on factors that cannot yet be predicted: how the virus is spreading both nationally and in local communities, how much testing is available, and whether state and local health departments are able to control spread via testing and contact tracing, the group said.

Schools will also have to be ready to clean and sanitize all areas, screen, monitor and test students and staff and limit student interactions. That may include having students stay in one room, with teachers moving from class to class.

The organization indicated it supports efforts to get back to school if it can be done safely.

“While some school districts have implemented distance learning, this is not generally believed to replicate the in-person learning experience,” the group said in its guidance.

“Such districts may also experience a widened divide in academic progress, with certain children able to access distance learning and continue to grow academically, while others might experience difficulty accessing or engaging with virtual instruction,” the guidance said.

12:52 p.m. ET, May 5, 2020

United Airlines warns management and administrative workers of "at least" 30% cuts to come

From CNN's Pete Muntean

Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images/FILE
Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images/FILE

In a memo that went out to about 11,500 workers, United Airlines’ EVP for Human Resources, Kate Gebo, says its management and administrative team could be reduced by at least 30% in October after funding from the CARES Act runs out.

In the meantime, the airline is asking these workers to take 20 unpaid days off. Some are being asked to work a four-day work week.

“The reality we are faced with, especially heading into what would normally be our busiest time of year, is daunting to say the least,” Gebo wrote.

More context: It’s the latest in a series of memos that have come to light from United, including one from its COO telling workers to consider voluntarily leaving the company and one from its chief pilot warning of furloughs.

Gebo also told workers they should consider leaving the company voluntarily.

“At this point, we’re planning for an M&A population that will be at least 30% smaller than it is today, with some work groups impacted more significantly than others. Affected employees will be notified in mid to late July for an October 1 effective date. Given the upcoming reductions, I have to ask each of you to seriously consider if choosing a voluntary separation with a robust benefits package might be right for you,” she wrote.