May 8 coronavirus news

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1:55 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

Amazon to take shutdown of its distribution centers to French Supreme Court

From CNN's Hadas Gold in London

An Amazon employee is seen at the Amazon logistics center in Lauwin-Planque, France, on April 16.
An Amazon employee is seen at the Amazon logistics center in Lauwin-Planque, France, on April 16. Denis Charlet/AFP/Getty Images

Amazon France is planning to take the case over the shutdown of its distribution centers to the French Supreme Court, the company said in a statement. 

A Paris court ruled last month that Amazon had to stop selling anything but essential items while the company reassessed how it was keeping its warehouse employees safe from coronavirus.

The case stemmed from a complaint brought by a French labor union. Amazon had appealed the decision but lost.  

After the court ruling, Amazon shut its French distribution centers on April 15, saying the move was due to the complexity of its logistics system and what it called confusing instructions from the court with the risk of hefty fines. 

The company yesterday announced the warehouses will remain closed through next Wednesday, but all staff will continue to be paid. 

1:40 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

Japan's new daily cases drop below 100 for first time in over a month

From CNN's Yoko Wakatsuki in Tokyo

Japan's health ministry said 95 new coronavirus patients and six virus-related deaths were identified on Thursday, the first time the daily caseload fell below triple digits since March 31.

The country has been under a state of emergency since last month as it has battled to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, though there are signs things are improving. Of Japan's 47 prefectures, 34 have been advised to prepare to ease their lockdown and social distancing restrictions in the coming days.

A total of 16,259 patients have been identified nationwide, while 570 have died. Of those, 712 cases and 13 fatalities are tied to the Diamond Princess cruise ship.

1:25 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

Jimmy Glenn, New York bar owner and retired boxer, dies after coronavirus diagnosis

From CNN's Nicole Chavez and Giulia McDonnell Nieto del Rio

Jimmy Glenn, a former boxing trainer and Times Square bar owner, died on Thursday after fighting the novel coronavirus for weeks, his son told CNN.

He was 89.

Glenn was hospitalized at NYU Langone Medical Center in April after suffering Covid-19 related symptoms and tested positive shortly after being admitted, his son Adam Glenn said.

The former boxer and cornerman was originally from South Carolina but spent most of his life in New York City. He began his boxing career as part of the Police Athletic League and later competed in The Golden Gloves for two years, according to the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame.

Glenn left behind amateur boxing and went on to become a trainer, manager and cut man. In the 1970s, Glenn worked as a cornerman for heavyweight great Floyd Patterson and trained numerous boxers.

He operated the now shuttered Times Square Gym for 18 years, working with fighters who considered him family.

"I would have these people coming up to me saying, you don't know what your dad did for me to help me, to get me off the streets," said Adam Glenn, 39. "He could look into anyone and make you feel like he could be your best self."

More recently, Glenn was a fixture at Jimmy's Corner, the dive bar he owned in Times Square.

The bar is an homage to boxing and a favorite for those looking for beer and whiskey at reasonable prices in the area.

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1:06 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

Pakistan sees highest single-day spike in cases

From CNN's Sophia Saifi in Islamabad

Rescue workers spray disinfectant along a road during a government-imposed nationwide lockdown as a preventative measure against the spread of the coornavirus in Peshawar on May 6.
Rescue workers spray disinfectant along a road during a government-imposed nationwide lockdown as a preventative measure against the spread of the coornavirus in Peshawar on May 6. Abdul Majeed/AFP/Getty Images

Pakistan's Ministry of Health said Friday it identified 1,764 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours, the highest rise in a single day the country has seen during the pandemic.

In total:

  • 25,837 total cases have been identified
  • 594 patients have died
  • 257,247 coronavirus tests have been conducted
12:51 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

The Amazon's gateway city is struggling to battle the coronavirus

From CNN's Flora Charner and Isa Soares

Esron Torres' grandfather was admitted to a hospital in Manaus, Brazil, with a finger wound. Days later, he was buried in one of the city's many overcrowded cemeteries. A handful of relatives attended the small ceremony, while others listened over the phone as the family's patriarch was laid to rest.

According to his death certificate, it was not the wound that killed him, but Covid-19.

The tragedy highlights the massive healthcare crisis facing this city, the capital of the northwestern state of Amazonas, and the strain on local institutions' ability to contain the coronavirus.

Officials have attributed just 532 deaths to Covid-19 in Manaus, but the true total is likely much higher. City data shows that 2,435 people were buried in April alone, compared with 871 burials during the same month a year ago. Shocking images have also emerged of excavators digging mass graves at the Parque Taruma cemetery, to accommodate the spike in burials.

Manaus mayor Arthur Virgilio Neto told CNN Brasil he feels the city has been "abandoned" during the health crisis. "I would like to create awareness around the world because I can't seem to get Brazil to wake up to the strategic importance of my state and my region," Neto said.

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12:32 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

Covid-19 could kill an extra 75,000 Americans through "deaths of despair"

From CNN's Mallory Simon

As many as 75,000 Americans could die because of drug or alcohol misuse and suicide as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, according to an analysis conducted by the national public health group Well Being Trust.

The growing unemployment crisis, economic downturns and stress caused by isolation and lack of a definitive end date for the pandemic could significantly increase so-called “deaths of despair” unless local, state and federal authorities take action, the group says in a new report released Friday.

“Unless we get comprehensive federal, state, and local resources behind improving access to high-quality mental health treatments and community supports, I worry we’re likely to see things get far worse when it comes to substance misuse and suicide,” Well Being Trust’s chief strategy officer Dr. Benjamin F. Miller said.

The Well Being trust released maps showing state and county level projections of these types of deaths, based on data from past years, due to Covid-19’s impact on unemployment, isolation and uncertainty.

The group is calling for a robust approach from local, state and federal officials and agencies to help those who lose their jobs because of the pandemic to find work.

What happened in 2008: Deaths from both suicide and drug overdoses rose along with unemployment during the 2008 recession. Unemployment went from 4.6% in 2007 to a peak of 10% in October 2009 and declined steadily, reaching 3.5% in early 2010, according to the group.

2020 could be much worse.

White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said on Tuesday he expects the US unemployment rate was above 16% in April, “My guess right now is it’s going to be north of 16%, maybe as high as 20%,” he said.

"We're looking at probably the worst unemployment rate since the Great Depression," Hassett told CNN's Poppy Harlow Tuesday.

12:15 a.m. ET, May 8, 2020

Australian PM Scott Morrison unveils 3-point plan to reopen the country

Prime Minister Scott Morrison speaks during a news conference following a National Cabinet meeting at Parliament House on May 8 in Canberra, Australia.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison speaks during a news conference following a National Cabinet meeting at Parliament House on May 8 in Canberra, Australia. Rohan Thomson/Getty Images

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison today outlined a three-point plan to reopen the economy and society -- and hopes to have it completed by July.

Morrison held up a board detailing the plan, saying that states and territories would be allowed to adhere to it at their own pace. 

The prime minister said the government will work to better define steps two and three when authorities get closer to implementing them. He said the plan would be reviewed every three weeks, according to CNN affiliate Nine News Australia.

Here are the steps Morrison outlined during his news conference:

Step 1:

  • Morrison said this will allow greater connections between friends and family
  • Gatherings of up to 10 people will be permitted
  • People will be allowed to welcome five guests in their homes
  • Children will be allowed to return to classrooms and playgrounds
  • Golf and swimming will be allowed to resume
  • Retail stores and small cafes and restaurants will be allowed to open
  • Intrastate recreational travel will be allowed
  • Up to 30 people will be allowed to attend funerals outdoors
  • Up to 10 people will be allowed to attend weddings outdoors

Step 2:

  • Gatherings of up to 20 people will be permitted, including for venues like movie theaters and galleries
  • More retail stores will be allowed to open, depending on the sector
  • Organized community sporting events will be allowed to resume
  • Beauty parlors can open

Step 3:

  • Gatherings of up to 100 people will be allowed
  • Most workers will be allowed back into the workplace
  • Interstate travel will likely resume
  • Bars and clubs can open, but with some restrictions
"The next step beyond this will be to build confidence and momentum that will see our economy get back up and running and get Australians back up on their feet and moving ahead with confidence," Morrison said.

11:44 p.m. ET, May 7, 2020

US records more than 28,000 new cases

At least 28,420 new coronavirus cases and 2,231 deaths were recorded in the United States on Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The total number of infections recorded in the country has now reached at least 1,257,023, with at least 75,662 related deaths, according to JHU.

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

CNN is tracking US coronavirus cases here:

11:25 p.m. ET, May 7, 2020

How do you market a pandemic treatment?

From CNN's Clare Duffy in New York

In a matter of weeks, remdesivir has gone from a shelved, failed hepatitis C treatment to the center of a national effort to treat patients suffering from Covid-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus.

The situation has thrust the pharmaceutical company behind the experimental drug, Gilead Sciences (GILD), into the spotlight. The company's stock is up nearly 20% from the start of this year, and investors have begun to wonder about potential returns from remdesivir. At the same time, it has sparked questions from lawmakers and activists about whether -- and just how much -- a company should be able to profit from a pandemic.

Still, experts caution that it's far too early to tell if remdesivir will be an effective treatment for Covid-19, and one worth paying for. Even if it is, there is enough uncertainty surrounding the trajectory of Covid-19 that it will be difficult to determine whether the drug has long-term business potential for Gilead.

Gilead CEO Daniel O'Day said on the company's first quarter earnings call this week that "it's too premature" to tell what the business model for remdesivir might be.

"Our focus will be on making sure we come up with a sustainable model that allows us to provide remdesivir to patients around the globe, that is intent on providing access and affordability," O'Day said. "We're just now going through the clinical data, the demand scenarios, the regulatory approvals."

Striking a balance: Experts say it is important for the company to strike a balance between pricing the drug affordably and making at least enough money to recoup the $1 billion it plans to spend on development costs for remdesivir this year. The price could also be important for incentivizing Gilead and other drug companies to continue developing potentially crucial treatments.

"They need to have some sort of assurance that they will recoup their investments," Piper Sandler analyst Tyler Van Buren said.

There are currently no treatments or vaccines officially approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for Covid-19, the virus that has now infected more than 1.2 million Americans, killing more than 75,600.

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