April 4 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Brett McKeehan, Amy Woodyatt, Fernando Alfonso III and Amir Vera, CNN

Updated 6:32 a.m. ET, April 5, 2020
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2:30 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

Louisiana passes 12,000 confirmed coronavirus cases  

From CNN’s Ashley Killough and Ed Lavandera in New Orleans

A temporary hospital set up in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center as overflow for local hospitals in New Orleans is seen on April 4.
A temporary hospital set up in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center as overflow for local hospitals in New Orleans is seen on April 4. Gerald Herbert/AP

There are at least 12,496 total cases of coronavirus reported in the state of Louisiana, according to the Louisiana Department of Health.

At least 1,726 people in Louisiana are hospitalized; of those, 571 are on ventilators, according to new state health figures released on Saturday.

That’s a slight increase from Friday when the state reported 1,707 patients were hospitalized and 535 of those were on ventilators.

The state has reported 39 new deaths, for a total of 409 in the state. 

There are 12,496 reported cases in the state. That is up from 10,297 cases on Friday. That’s a 21% increase in cases reported from Friday.

8:26 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

There are 1,263 coronavirus patients in New Jersey on ventilators

From CNN's Kristina Sgueglia

New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Judith M. Persichilli said today that of the 4,000 confirmed coronavirus patients in hospitals across the state, 1,494 are in critical care as of Friday evening.

Persichilli added that of these 1,494 patients, 1,263 of them are on ventilators, she said today during a new conference.

2:08 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

Authorities in Italy's Lombardy region order all citizens to wear masks when outside

From CNN's Livia Borghese in Rome 

A man walks with groceries in Milan, Italy, on April 2.
A man walks with groceries in Milan, Italy, on April 2. Lorenzo Palizzolo/Getty Images

Italian authorities in the northern Italian region of Lombardy are ordering all citizens to wear masks when outside. 

According to a statement issued by the region's president, Attilio Fontana, members of the public are now obligated to cover "their nose and mouth with masks, or even through simple scarves" when leaving the house, until the April 13.

"The already authorized retail businesses also have the obligation to provide their customers with disposable gloves and hydro-alcoholic solutions for hand hygiene," Fontana added. 

Speaking in a video message on Saturday, Fontana urged members of the public to continue to adhere to the government's guidance and instructions, cautioning that the country's goal of eliminating the deadly virus has not yet been reached. 

"No goal has been reached yet, and we have to keep working, otherwise all our efforts will vanish," the regional president said. 

2:00 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

An inside look at a NYC hospital where 7 coronavirus patients died in 36 hours

From CNN's Sonia Moghe

An administrator at Morningside Hospital, which is part of New York City's Mount Sinai system, shared a snapshot with CNN of what Friday looked like for the hospital.

There were 261 Covid-19 patients, 64 in critical care, 172 in non-critical care and 25 in the emergency department.

Seven people died of Covid-19 in 36 hours, through early Saturday morning, the administrator told CNN. Thirty Covid-19 positive patients were admitted to the hospital throughout the day.

In total, 81 percent of the hospital’s population is Covid-19 positive.

This one hospital alone has seen 53 people die of Covid-19 to date.

By the end of the day Friday, 88 of its critical care beds were in use with only five left. The administrator said 64 of its ICU ventilators were in use, with 42 ICU level ventilators still left.

“Right now ventilators are not the issue. We got a huge influx,” the administrator said, of his hospital. “For us, the issue is ICU beds and staff. We have staff that are getting sick.”
1:37 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

There are at least 290,606 coronavirus cases in the US

There are at least 290,606 cases of coronavirus in the US and 7,826 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University's tally of cases in the country.

On Saturday, at least 12,653 new cases and at least 674 new deaths in the US have been reported, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins. 

8:27 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

A few patients sent to USNS Comfort tested positive for Covid-19

From CNN's Ryan Browne

Bryan R. Smith/AFP via Getty Images
Bryan R. Smith/AFP via Getty Images

The US Navy says a “few patients” that were sent from the Javits Center to the USNS Comfort who tested positive for Covid-19. 

The patients were isolated upon arrival to the Comfort, which is docked in New York City, while they awaited test results and were transferred back to the Javits Center once the test results came in. 

“While admitting patients who were transferred to USNS Comfort for treatment, a few patients tested positive for Covid-19. The patients were isolated immediately upon arrival and received care for the entirety of their time aboard the ship, and were transferred as soon as practical to the Javits Center, which is treating Covid-19 patients. Our medical experts on board are well prepared for cases like this, and have taken the appropriate precautionary measures The Comfort is capable of continuing its mission," Navy spokesperson Cdr. Ashley Hockycko said in a statement.

Separately, a defense official told CNN that about five patients brought to the ship from Javits did test positive for coronavirus when they were tested at the ship, which is the procedure for all patients arriving at USNS Comfort.

While the test results were coming in, which took about an hour, the patients were kept in isolation. When the result came back positive, the patients were transferred back to Javits which has the ability to treat coronavirus patients. 

Some context: CNN reported Friday that ambulances are not taking people directly to the ship, which docked in New York City on Monday.

Patients are referred to the ship by shore-based hospitals and must be screened and tested for the virus before being admitted on board.

12:55 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

Schumer says Trump should invoke the full Defense Production Act

From CNN's Elise Hammond 

Senator Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is calling for the president to invoke the full Defense Production Act as states struggle with medical supply shortages.

"We are not going to overcome this supply problem unless we have someone, a military person in charge," Schumer said today.

Schumer said he talked to President Trump and other White House officials and asked them to seriously consider allowing the military to take over factories and supply chains.

"We're in a wartime here, and we need this military leader, command and control with the president's full backing, and that will make this horrible, horrible scourge end more quickly with fewer illnesses and fewer deaths," Schumer said.

Some context: President Trump signed a presidential memorandum on Thursday that directed six more companies to help make ventilators.

But, after signing the executive order, Trump initially stopped short of using it against specific companies saying that businesses were voluntarily pitching in.

8:27 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

UK coronavirus death toll likely to remain high over next two weeks

From CNN's Nada Bashir

The high number of coronavirus-related deaths across the United Kingdom is "likely to continue" over the course of the next two weeks, the national medical director for England's National Health Service, Stephen Powis, said Saturday. 

"Unfortunately, and with great sadness, the number of deaths continues to be high…that is likely to continue over the next week or two until we get on top and stop this virus," Powis told reporters during a press briefing at Downing Street. "I do think, sadly, that we will continue to see those high numbers of deaths that we have seen at the moment."

Powis urged members of the public to not be complacent, and to continue to follow the guidance and instructions issued by the government. 

"Hospitalizations are still going up, so this is not the time to be complacent and to take our foot off the pedal. We need to continue to comply with those instructions, because that will translate, in the next week or two, into a reduction in hospital admissions," Powis urged. 

"As we start to get control of this through social distancing, in a few weeks that will start to fall," he added.

5:37 p.m. ET, April 4, 2020

Pennsylvania reports 1,597 new coronavirus cases

From CNN's Melissa Alonso 

Pennsylvania has 1,597 new cases of Covid-19 as of Saturday morning, the state's Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said at a briefing.  

The state now has 10,017 cases in 64 counties, Levine said. 

Approximately 10% of patients require hospitalization, according to Levine. There are have been 136 coronavirus-related deaths across the state, Levine said.  

Levine said 189 of the state's cases are health care workers.