April 7 coronavirus news

By Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes, Amy Woodyatt, Jessie Yeung, Helen Regan and Adam Renton, CNN

Updated 9:24 p.m. ET, April 7, 2020
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11:38 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

New York governor says Navy hospital ship will now take coronavirus patients

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt

Kena Betancur/Getty Images/FILE
Kena Betancur/Getty Images/FILE

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the USNS Comfort docked in New York City will now treat patients with coronavirus. 

The ship was originally planned to treat non-coronavirus patients, to open up capacity at the city's on-shore hospitals.

He said President Trump “moved expeditiously” with the Department of Defense to make the switch.

“I want to thank the President for moving as quickly as he did,” Cuomo said. 

The ship, which is typically a 1,000-bed hospital, will now have 500 beds, since Covid-19 patients require more space for treatment and equipment, the governor explained. The Comfort, as well as the hospital set up at the Javits Center, are “a welcome overload relief to the hospital system, which is already extraordinarily stressed,” he said.


11:18 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

More than 5,400 coronavirus patients have died in New York

State of New York
State of New York

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at least 5,489 people across the state have died from coronavirus — that's up from 4,758 yesterday

"That is the largest single day increase," he said.

There are 138,836 total cases in the state.

Cuomo broke down the number of deaths each day over the past few days:

  • April 2: 562
  • April 3: 630
  • April 4: 594
  • April 5: 599
  • April 6: 731


10:55 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

How to help homeless communities during the pandemic

From CNN's Mayra Cuevas, Chris Dawson, Jennifer Grubb and AJ Willingham

The coronavirus pandemic is overwhelming, and one of the most excruciating parts for many people is the feeling of utter helplessness in the face of widespread suffering and hardship.

Here's how to help local homeless communities during the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Donate food or funds: Find a local shelter in your community and contact them to see what they need, such as non-perishable goods, clothing or basic supplies.
  • Stay in touch: Like other vulnerable communities, unhoused people will face serious challenges even after the coronavirus outbreak is over. Consider volunteering or making another commitment in the future.

And here's how to give to charities that support homeless communities:

  • Coalition for the Homeless: The Coalition for the Homeless is providing temporary housing and meals in New York City, where the magnitude of the coronavirus outbreak has left unhoused people especially vulnerable.
  • Covenant House: This human rights organization focuses on homeless youth and is taking donations to help protect youth across the country who are especially at risk during the coronavirus outbreak.
  • The Salvation Army: The Salvation Army is working with local, federal and medical leaders to provide coronavirus response, and has a fund to assist with food, help with utilities and provide safe shelter to homeless and disadvantaged people affected by the crisis.

CNN’s Impact Your World has compiled a list of donation opportunities and tips to help those affected by the crisis. You can read the full list here.

10:49 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

New York City mayor says half a million New Yorkers are unemployed — or soon will be

From CNN's Elizabeth Jospeh

NYC Media
NYC Media

Economic difficulties due to the coronavirus pandemic are worsening, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a news conference this morning.

“When it comes to the economic battle, when it comes to battling to make sure that people have the food they need, that situation is not getting better, it's getting worse,” he said, citing job losses and reduced paychecks. 

He added:

“The initial projection is at least half a million New Yorkers are either already out of work or soon will be. That is the kind of level of unemployment and economic distress. The only comparison you could make for that is the Great Depression, which scares me to the death to even say that.”
10:43 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

It's election day in Wisconsin. Here's what one polling site looks like.

Wisconsin is holding its primary as scheduled today despite public health concerns from the coronavirus pandemic. 

CNN's Omar Jimenez is at a polling site in Milwaukee. A line has formed as voters try to stay apart from each other.

Earlier today, Dr. Jerome Adams, the US Surgeon General, urged Wisconsin voters to maintain a safe six-foot distance from other voters and wear a face cloth or covering as they head to the polls.  

"If you're going to exercise your right to vote, do it as safely as possible," Adams told NBC's Savannah Guthrie. 

Some background: Every other state with an election scheduled for April postponed their contest or shifted it to by-mail voting only.

But Republicans in Wisconsin who have insisted on holding the election on schedule won two legal battles yesterday, as the state Supreme Court blocked Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' bid to delay it until June and the US Supreme Court reversed a lower court's ruling that gave voters six extra days to return their ballots by mail.

10:30 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

US Vice President Mike Pence will brief Congress on coronavirus this week

From Betsy Klein, Manu Raju and Haley Byrd

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

This week Vice President Mike Pence will hold four conference calls to brief House Democrats, House Republicans, Senate Democrats and Senate Republicans on coronavirus, according to spokesperson Katie Miller. 

The House calls are scheduled for tomorrow and the Senate calls will be on Thursday, according to a source involved with planning.

After their call with the Vice President, House Democrats will also have a call with former Health and Human Services secretary Sylvia Burwell.

10:20 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

More than 11,000 people have died from coronavirus in the US

A medical worker moves a body to a refrigerated trailer serving as a makeshift morgue at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, Monday, April 6, in New York.
A medical worker moves a body to a refrigerated trailer serving as a makeshift morgue at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, Monday, April 6, in New York. John Minchillo/AP

At least 11,008 people have died due to coronavirus across the United States, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University.

Johns Hopkins is reporting 368,449 cases in the United States. 

10:10 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

Coronavirus survivor says he doesn’t remember his time on a ventilator

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt

David Lat is an attorney and writer of the "'Above the Law" blog. He was diagnosed with coronavirus a few days ago and is now on a ventilator.
David Lat is an attorney and writer of the "'Above the Law" blog. He was diagnosed with coronavirus a few days ago and is now on a ventilator. Courtesy David Lat

David Lat spent 17 days hospitalized with Covid-19, including six days on a ventilator before being discharged last week. 

“It was like a scene out of ‘ER’ or ‘Chicago Hope’ or something. But I have no recollection of my time on the ventilator, which is interesting because I've since read that some ventilator patients have hallucinations, delusions. I don’t remember anything,” said Lat, a lawyer and legal writer whose tweets during his time in the hospital were shared widely on social media.

While he was in good health, didn’t smoke and has run two New York City marathons, he told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota he did experience exercise-induced asthma. 

“There probably are a lot of people out there who have conditions that are similar that don't make a big impact on their day-to-day lives, but they should be aware of because if you get coronavirus or Covid-19, it can make things a lot worse for you,” he said. 

He said he was treated with a few different drugs, including hydroxychloroquine and Zithromax, but doctors were unable to tell him definitely if they helped him recover.

10:20 a.m. ET, April 7, 2020

Why UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is unlikely to accept US "help"

Analysis from CNN's Luke McGee

President Donald Trump speaks to reporters following a meeting of his coronavirus task force  at the White House on Monday, April 6.
President Donald Trump speaks to reporters following a meeting of his coronavirus task force at the White House on Monday, April 6. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump told reporters last night that he had asked US medical companies to "help" with the treatment of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is currently in intensive care after he tested positive for Covid-19 nearly two weeks ago. 

While the spirit of Trump's offer was no doubt sincere and greeted with gratitude in Downing Street, it is unlikely to have been welcomed — at least at a political level. 

One of the UK government's top priorities during this time has been to keep the public calm and reiterate its total confidence in the National Health Service.

In an off-camera briefing today, Johnson’s official spokesperson said the UK government was in "constant contact" with the US government, but that he was "confident" Johnson was getting the "best care from the NHS" and that any decision regarding his treatment would decided by Johnson's doctors — who are NHS doctors. 

Those of you with British friends will be familiar with tone in this message — thank you, but please stop. 

The optics of an unpopular US president offering US services that are not available on the NHS is one of the least helpful things that Trump could have done during this time. Which is probably why Downing Street was so quick to bat away any suggestion that the PM's doctors would countenance taking him up on the offer.