June 30 coronavirus news

By Nectar Gan, Adam Renton, Melissa Macaya, Meg Wagner and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 12:02 a.m. ET, July 1, 2020
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12:08 p.m. ET, June 30, 2020

Alabama governor extends "safer at home" order due to coronavirus outbreak

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey speaks during a coronavirus update in the state capitol building in Montgomery, Alabama, on June 29.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey speaks during a coronavirus update in the state capitol building in Montgomery, Alabama, on June 29. Mickey Welsh/Advertiser/USA Today

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey announced the state is extending its "safer at home" order until July 31. The current order, which took effect on May 22, was previously set to expire on Friday.

The extended order comes as Covid-19 case numbers across the state of Alabama continue to rise. 

During a news conference today, Alabama State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris said the percentage of tests that are positive are going up. Harris said even though the state is testing more, there is a greater number of people testing positive, which means there is community transmission. 

He added that Montgomery County, which was once a hotspot, has seen a decrease in new cases but warns that they are not out of the woods. 

11:56 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

Arizona reports more than 4,600 new Covid-19 cases in 2 days

From CNN’s Konstantin Toropin

Arizona health officials are reporting 4,682 new cases in the last 48 hours as the agency recovers from a lab reporting error.

“Due to a reporting issue yesterday, more than half of today's newly reported cases would have been reported Monday,” the Arizona Department of Health wrote in a tweet today.

“Today's reported new case number represents a two-day total,” the agency added.

Yesterday, the agency said that “one of our lab partners did not submit their daily report in time” and, as a result, Monday case count was not complete.

Read the tweet:

3:46 p.m. ET, June 30, 2020

New York adds 8 additional states to traveler quarantine list, governor says

From CNN's Elizabeth Joseph

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a press conference in New York on June 29.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a press conference in New York on June 29. NY1/Pool

Individuals traveling to New York state from California, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada and Tennessee will now be required to quarantine for two weeks, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said today, expanding the list of states that meet Covid-19 metrics that qualify for the travel advisory.

"As an increasing number of states around the country fight significant community spread, New York is taking action to maintain the precarious safety of its phased, data-driven reopening," Governor Cuomo said in a press statement. 

"We've set metrics for community spread just as we've set metrics for everything the state does to fight Covid-19 and eight more states have reached the level of spread required to qualify for New York's travel advisory, meaning we will now require individuals traveling to New York from those states to quarantine for 14 days," he said.

Travelers from the following 16 states will be required to quarantine, according to the governor’s office:

  1. Alabama 
  2. Arkansas
  3. Arizona 
  4. California
  5. Florida
  6. Georgia
  7. Iowa 
  8. Idaho 
  9. Louisiana 
  10. Mississippi 
  11. North Carolina
  12. Nevada
  13. South Carolina 
  14. Tennessee
  15. Texas 
  16. Utah

The governors for New Jersey and Connecticut also announced that they are asking individuals traveling from 16 states significantly impacted by community spread of Covid-19 to quarantine for 14 days upon entry to the state.

The advisory applies to travel from states that have positive Covid-19 test rates higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or have a 10% or higher positivity rate over a seven-day rolling average, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy's office said.

More context: Last week, New York announced a joint travel advisory with Connecticut and New Jersey mandating that travelers from states where Covid-19 is surging quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in any of the three states.

11:48 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

GOP leaders indicates Republicans unlikely to agree to unemployment benefits extension

From CNN's Haley Byrd

U.S. House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy speaks at a press conference on Capitol Hill on June 30 in Washington, DC.
U.S. House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy speaks at a press conference on Capitol Hill on June 30 in Washington, DC. Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy indicated it is unlikely Republicans will agree to extending unemployment benefits that were included in coronavirus stimulus legislation earlier this year. 

“We want incentive, we want all Americans to work,” he said. “I don’t think it’s productive to extend the added money from the federal government.”

The $600 benefit is set to expire in July.

He also suggested that the payments are “becoming a hardship for individuals to be able to go back to work.”

“I think the greatest incentive here is, let’s help people get back to work in a safe manner,” he said.

11:46 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

TSA says it is opening more screening lanes at airports to help travelers with social distancing

From CNN's Pete Muntean

Passengers line up to enter TSA pre-check at Orlando International Airport on June 17 in Orlando.
Passengers line up to enter TSA pre-check at Orlando International Airport on June 17 in Orlando. John Raoux/AP

In a briefing with reporters today, TSA Administrator David Pekoske said the agency is taking a number of steps to protect travelers and employees and maintain social distancing, including opening more screening lanes at airports. 

He said the agency is opening the lanes to limit exposure, with the hope of keeping wait times to nine minutes or less. 

TSA is also asking passengers to self-scan their boarding pass on new machines it is using at some locations.

Officers now use face shields when they are doing passenger pat-downs, Pekoske said. He also said they are cleaning bins more often and changing gloves more often. 

“We will continue to evaluate more safety measures,” Pekoske said. 

11:18 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

New York reports 13 new deaths from Covid-19

From CNN's Elizabeth Joseph

There were 13 coronavirus-related deaths across New York State Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo tweeted today.

About 1% — 524 of 52,025 — individuals who tested for coronavirus Monday tested positive, he posted, adding that there were 891 coronavirus-related hospitalizations across the state.

Read his tweet:

11:17 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

FDA authorizes company to conduct emergency coronavirus antibody tests

From CNN Health's Jacqueline Howard

The US Food and Drug Administration has issued an emergency use authorization to the company Beckman Coulter for its Covid-19 antibody test.

Beckman Coulter announced the authorization on Monday and noted that it has already shipped tests to more than 400 hospitals, clinics and diagnostics labs in the United States, as well as begun distributing the test globally. The company claims it is able to deliver more than 30 million tests a month.

"At a time when significant confusion was created by the initial influx of poor-quality antibody tests, our team worked meticulously to develop a highly sensitive and specific assay," Julie Sawyer Montgomery, president of Beckman Coulter, said in the company's announcement. 

"With 100% Positive Percent Agreement and 99.6% Negative Percent Agreement, our test significantly reduces the risk for false positives, delivering the results that health care providers and their patients can trust," Sawyer Montgomery said. "A lot has been written about accuracy issues with the initially launched antibody tests, but a test at this level offers positive predictive values greater than 90% even in very low prevalence communities. And, in areas hardest hit by the virus, the positive predictive values of our assay are greater than 98%."

Some context: As of Monday, the FDA has authorized 24 antibody tests for emergency use in the United States, according to the agency. The tests are an important public health tool to determine who has had Covid-19 in the past. They look for antibodies that are evidence of an immune response to coronavirus infection.

 

11:16 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

GOP senator doubles down on suggestion Trump "occasionally" wear a mask

From CNN's Alison Main 

Senator Lamar Alexander, a chairman of the Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Committee, speaks during a hearing on the US response to the coronavirus pandemic on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on June 30.
Senator Lamar Alexander, a chairman of the Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Committee, speaks during a hearing on the US response to the coronavirus pandemic on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on June 30. Al Drago/Pool/AFP/Getty Images

Before making his opening statement in Tuesday's hearing on the US response to the coronavirus pandemic, Senate HELP Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander reiterated his support for wearing masks and his view that President Trump should wear one to eliminate the political stigma around doing so.

Alexander lamented the politicization of face coverings, saying the growing divide is why he has suggested that the President "occasionally wear a mask, even though in most cases it's not necessary for him to do so."

"The President has plenty of admirers. They would follow his lead. He would help end this political debate," the Tennessee Republican told his committee and witnesses, adding that the "stakes are too high" for the divide to continue.

More on this: On Sunday, Alexander told CNN's Manu Raju on "Inside Politics" that he thinks it would "help" if President Trump wore a mask.

As he made these remarks, Alexander told the committee that he was not wearing a mask because he was at least six feet apart from others in the room, as is permitted in the Office of Attending Physician's guidance.

11:11 a.m. ET, June 30, 2020

Americans will not be allowed to travel to the EU as countries open borders

From CNN's Stephanie Halasz

An Air Corsica aircraft lands at Paris Orly Airport near Paris on June 26.
An Air Corsica aircraft lands at Paris Orly Airport near Paris on June 26. Aurelien Morissard/Xinhua via Getty Images

The European Union published its list of countries to start lifting travel restrictions. The US is not on that list.

“Council agrees to start lifting travel restrictions for residents of some third countries," a readout says.

Based on the criteria and conditions set out, starting tomorrow, member states should start lifting the travel restrictions at the external borders for residents of the following third countries:

  • Algeria
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Georgia
  • Japan
  • Montenegro
  • Morocco
  • New Zealand
  • Rwanda
  • Serbia
  • South Korea
  • Thailand
  • Tunisia
  • Uruguay

China is also on the list, but subject to confirmation of reciprocity.

According to the readout, regarding the epidemiological situation, the countries on the list should meet the following criteria:

  • Number of new Covid-19 cases over the last 14 days and per 100,000 inhabitants close to or below the EU average (as it stood on June 15)
  • Stable or decreasing trend of new cases over this period in comparison to the previous 14 days
  • The countries' overall response to Covid-19 taking into account available information, including on aspects such as testing, surveillance, contact tracing, containment, treatment and reporting, as well as the reliability of the information and, if needed, the total average score for International Health Regulations (IHR). Information provided by EU delegations on these aspects should also be taken into account.

The European Union said this list of countries allowed to enter the EU should be reviewed every two weeks and may be updated.