March 30 coronavirus news

By Amy Woodyatt, Julia Hollingsworth, Ben Westcott, Adam Renton, Meg Wagner and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 11:41 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020
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6:18 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Federal judge blocks Texas executive order mandating abortions be postponed during coronavirus crisis

From CNN's Ariane de Vogue

Texas Governor Greg Abbott speaks during a press briefing in Austin, Texas, on March 29.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott speaks during a press briefing in Austin, Texas, on March 29. Tom Fox/Pool/Getty Images

A federal judge in Texas is blocking for now an executive order that mandates that abortion clinics postpone elective surgeries, including abortion, during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The court found that the order — as interpreted by the state’s attorney general — violates the Constitution by “effectively banning all abortions before viability.”

The court’s order comes after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an order last week mandating that licensed health care facilities including abortion providers postpone all surgeries and procedures that are not medically necessary.

Clinics went to court seeking a temporary restraining order. 

6:01 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Texas inmates sue for sanitizer and soap to help stave off coronavirus spread

From CNN's Katelyn Polantz

Texas prison inmates are suing for hand sanitizer, soap and paper towels, alleging that their prison unit hasn't taken enough precautions to stop the spread of novel coronavirus, according to a new federal lawsuit.

The lawsuit says both the Texas criminal justice system and the community around the Wallace Pack Unit in Grimes County have seen multiple reported cases of the novel coronavirus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that jails make cleaning supplies, personal protective equipment and hand sanitizer available. 

The lawsuit alleges that Texas state inmates can't get access to hand sanitizer because of state policy — even while some inmates have been forced to make it.

The lawsuit also claims the prison hasn't taken enough steps to stop the virus from spreading, such as by reducing inmate interactions.

So far, an inmate and two employees at other facilities in the Texas prison system have tested positive for coronavirus, the lawsuit said. 

A spokesperson for the Texas state prison system declined to comment on the lawsuit's allegations because the state is still reviewing it. He also said the health practices at Texas correctional facilities are evolving, but didn't give specifics.

"The health and wellbeing of TDCJ employees and contractors as well as the offenders in our custody is of utmost importance. TDCJ is working in close contact with the Centers for Disease Control and Texas State Health officials," Jeremy Desel said in an email Monday. "As guidance from the CDC and state health officials evolves so do our practices."

5:48 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Arizona governor issues stay-at-home order

From CNN's Andy Rose

Arizona’s Doug Ducey is the latest governor to order his citizens to stay at home unless they have to be out for essential business.

"Today, I'm announcing that the time for further action is now,” Ducey said at a news conference on Monday. The new order goes into effect at 5 p.m. Tuesday.

Ducey encouraged people to continue to engage in outdoor activities using social distancing. He also said it’s important that people stay in touch with one another. 

"This is going to be a tough month... or two," Ducey said.

The new order comes on the same day that state officials ordered all schools to remain closed for the remainder of the academic year.

5:59 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Workers test positive at two more Amazon locations

From CNN's Natasha Chen

Packages move along a conveyer belt inside Amazon's fulfillment center in Kent, Washington, in 2018.
Packages move along a conveyer belt inside Amazon's fulfillment center in Kent, Washington, in 2018. Grant Hindsley/AFP/Getty Images

In addition to the Amazon locations CNN has previously reported where workers have tested positive for Covid-19, an Amazon spokesperson confirmed to CNN Monday that at least one worker tested positive in both Kent, Washington, and Eastvale, California.

The spokesperson also said that Amazon has made employees at the sites aware of the confirmed cases and asked anyone who was in close contact with the diagnosed individuals to stay home with pay for 14 days in self-quarantine.

“We’re continuing to monitor the situation in our facilities and corporate offices, and we are taking proactive measures to protect employees and associates who have been in contact with anyone who has been diagnosed or becomes ill," according to an Amazon spokesperson. "Like most global companies, we’ve had employees affected by this, and we’re doing all that we can to protect our employees and take the proper precautions as stated in WHO guidelines. You can read more about all we’re doing to protect employees and partners here.”

Amazon has offered two additional weeks of paid leave for workers who test positive for Covid-19 and for those who come into contact with the individuals who tested positive. Workers are also allowed unlimited unpaid time off through the end of April.

5:43 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Trump shares details on machine that disinfects masks

From CNN's Daniella Diaz

Alex Brandon/AP
Alex Brandon/AP

President Trump said the Food and Drug Administration approved a machine that could disinfect N95 masks, so health care providers could reuse them.

"Each machine now can disinfect 120,000 masks per day," Trump said today. "Now, think of that. Each machine can disinfect 120,000 masks per day. It will be just like a new one. It can go up to about 20 times for each mask."

He continued: "So each mask can go through this process 20 times. And they have two in Ohio, one in New York, and one will soon be shipped to Seattle, Washington. And also to Washington, DC. So that's going to make a tremendous difference on the masks."

The FDA approved the use of the mask cleaning machine produced by Columbus based Battelle earlier Monday.


5:51 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Trump: 1 million have been tested in US for coronavirus

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump announced Monday that the United States has tested one million people in the country for novel coronavirus.

“Today we reached a historic milestone in our war against the coronavirus. Over one million Americans have been tested — more than any other country by far. Not even close,” Trump told reporters in the White House Rose Garden.

Health and Human Services Sec. Alex Azar also touted the testing milestone, saying that it was “a number no other country has reached.”

“We’re now testing over 100,000 samples a day— also a level that no other country has reached,” he added.


5:32 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Here's what we know about the 15-minute coronavirus test

From CNN's Arman Azad

Stephen M. Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, described today a new point-of-care coronavirus test that was recently approved.

The test can provide results in less than 15 minutes using the same technology that powers some rapid flu tests.

"Just like tests for flu or strep, you go to the doctor's office and can get an answer within minutes of having the tests done," Hahn said.

The FDA authorized the test for emergency use, signaling that federal regulators were satisfied with the test’s validation data and believe its benefits outweigh any risks, such as false positives or negatives.

The platform used to run the test weighs less than 7 pounds, according to Abbott, and could be deployed “where testing is needed most,” such as at coronavirus hotspots.

5:37 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Trump: "This is a very vital 30 days"

From CNN's Kevin Liptak and Daniella Diaz

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump told reporters he believes the next 30 days are important for flattening the curve to stop the outbreak of coronavirus.

Trump said yesterday that he was extending social distancing guidelines by another 30 days, to April 30.

"Every one of us has a role to play in winning this war. Every citizen, family, and business can make the difference in stopping the virus," Trump said today. "This is our shared patriotic duty. Challenging times are ahead for the next 30 days."

He continued: "And this is a very vital 30 days, we're sort of putting it all on the line, these 30 days, so important, because we have to get back."


5:27 p.m. ET, March 30, 2020

Governors tell Trump about lack of supplies during call, source says

From CNN's Lauren Fox

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP Images
Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP Images

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock raised the lack of supplies including both personal protective equipment and testing capabilities on a phone call with President Trump and other governors, a source familiar tells CNN.

The New York Times first reported that Bullock, a Democrat, told Trump "officials in his state were attempting to do 'contact tracing' — tracking down people who have come into contact with those who have tested positive — but they were struggling because 'we don’t have adequate tests.'”

According to the Times, Trump responded saying, “I haven’t heard about testing in weeks,” and told the governors “We’ve tested more now than any nation in the world. We’ve got these great tests and we’re coming out with a faster one this week.” He added, “I haven’t heard about testing being a problem.”