April 19 coronavirus news

By Helen Regan, Jenni Marsh, Laura Smith-Spark, Fernando Alfonso III and Amir Vera, CNN

Updated 10:02 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020
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8:06 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Pence says New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Detroit are past their peak

From CNN's Dylan Wells

Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images
Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

Vice President Mike Pence said Sunday that the White House task force overseeing the coronavirus pandemic believes several large metro areas continue to stabilize and see progress. He also said there are several cities the task force is watching.

“Areas that we continue to watch carefully on the task force include the Chicago metro area, Boston metro, and the Philadelphia metropolitan area,” Pence said.

As for the areas that have made progress he listed several:

“The New York metro area, including New Jersey, New York, Long Island, Connecticut and Rhode Island all appear to be past their peak. The Detroit metro area also appears to be past its peak and is stable, New Orleans metro area actually is the most stable of all areas where we had a major metropolitan outbreak. The Denver metro area is stable,” Pence said.

The rates of California and Washington states remain “low and steady," Pence said

7:49 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Chile’s coronavirus cases surpass 10,000

 From CNN's Gerardo Lemos

Chile has reported 10,088 confirmed cases of novel coronavirus, Paula Daza, Chile’s public health undersecretary, said in a televised statement on Sunday. 

In the past 24 hours, 358 new cases and seven new deaths have been recorded, according to Daza.

As of Sunday, there have been 133 coronavirus deaths in Chile. 

7:46 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Trump says US wants investigators to go to China

From CNN's From Jason Hoffman

President Donald Trump said Sunday the US still wants investigators to go to China to investigate the coronavirus outbreak.

The US has previously made requests, which have been rebuffed. The White House has continually accused China of withholding accurate information about the extent of the virus within the country.

“We are talking to China. We spoke to them a long time ago about going in. We want to go in,” Trump said Sunday at a coronavirus task force briefing.
7:41 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Report: 14% of the NYPD are out sick

From CNN's Laura Ly

John Nacion/NurPhoto/Getty Images
John Nacion/NurPhoto/Getty Images

About 14% of the New York Police Department were out sick on Sunday -- that’s down from a high of 19.8%, according to a daily NYPD report.

To date, 4,371 members of the NYPD have tested positive for Covid-19. Of those, 2,270 members have recovered and returned to work, and 2,073 are still out sick, the report said.

Those out sick include 1,706 uniformed members and 367 civilian members.

7:26 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Trump says he will invoke the Defense Production Act to increase production of swabs

From CNN's Jason Hoffman

Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images
Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

President Donald Trump said he is planning to use the Defense Production Act again, this time to help with the production of swabs needed to conduct coronavirus tests.

Trump said the administration is close to finalizing a deal with a company that will convert its plant to produce 10 million swabs per month, but that he would use the DPA to force another company to do the same.

“We also are going to be using and preparing to use the Defense Production Act to increase swab production in one US facility by over 20 million additional swabs per month. We’ve had a little difficulty with one so we'll call in -- as we have in the past, as you know -- we are calling in the Defense Production Act and we'll be getting swabs very easily,” Trump said.

Trump did not name either company.

Governors on both sides of the aisle have complained that one of the reasons states cannot conduct enough coronavirus tests is that they lack the materials needed to conduct such tests, including swabs.

Trump said last week 5 million swabs were going to be sent to the states but did not provide specifics.

7:16 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Trump says deal on additional funding for small businesses could happen Monday

From CNN's Jason Hoffman

Patrick Semansky/AP
Patrick Semansky/AP

President Donald Trump opened Sunday’s coronavirus task force briefing by saying negotiations over adding hundreds of billions of dollars to the Paycheck Protection Program are continuing to make progress, and that a deal could be announced Monday. Trump said he thinks the sides are getting close to a deal.

“I would like to begin by saying we are continuing to negotiate with the Democrats to get our great workers and small businesses all over the country taken care of. I think we are getting close to a deal. It could happen. It could happen. A lot of good work has been going on and we could have an answer tomorrow and we are going to see what exactly does take place,” Trump said.

The President also said there will additional aid in the package. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNN’s “State of the Union” earlier Sunday that $75 billion will be included for hospitals.

“We are also looking at helping our hospitals and our rural hospitals who have been hurt very badly. The rural hospitals for a long time have not been treated properly. We are looking to help them and beyond. So we are looking at hospitals also as part of the package” Trump said.

Trump said he had just gotten off the phone with Mnuchin and concluded by saying, “I think you will have a nice answer tomorrow.”

6:35 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

12,000 coronavirus testing kits in Washington recalled because of possible contamination

From CNN’s Hollie Silverman

About 12,000 coronavirus testing kits distributed by the Washington Department of Health have been recalled because of possible contamination, according to a news release from the health department.

Friday, University of Washington Medicine notified the state health department that there may have been a quality control issue after a small number of vials of viral transport media (VTM) fluid appeared to have an unusual color, according to the release.

The testing kits in question were sent to local health jurisdictions, tribal nations, and state agency partners across the state, the news release said.

Jurisdictions that received the kits are encouraged to contact the health department for a new shipment of swabs and VTM transport tubes, according to the release.

A large shipment of swabs and VTM from a different vendor are expected to arrive in the state this week, the release said. 

6:16 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

There are at least 755,533 coronavirus cases in the US

From CNN's Hollie Silverman

There are at least 755,533 cases of coronavirus in the United States and at least 40,461 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University's tally.

The total includes cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as all repatriated cases.  

View CNN's interactive map tracking the coronavirus in the United States.

5:26 p.m. ET, April 19, 2020

Despite larger capacity, Illinois still struggling to complete all testing due to lack of resources

From CNN’s Hollie Silverman

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said that while the state has machines to complete coronavirus testing, it doesn't have all of the resources needed to analyze all tests on a larger scale.

Testing kits are available and machines are available, but there are key components needed to analyze all collected samples, Pritzker said. 

Such components include swabs, viral transport mechanisms to send swabs for testing, reagents, RNA extractors and available lab technicians to complete testings, according to Pritzker.