July 9 coronavirus news

By Joshua Berlinger, Brett McKeehan, Ivana Kottasová, Ed Upright, Meg Wagner and Melissa Macaya, CNN

Updated 0112 GMT (0912 HKT) July 10, 2020
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4:12 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

Arkansas pushes school start date back to August 24

From CNN's Pierre Meilhan

Gov. Asa Hutchinson
Gov. Asa Hutchinson Pool

Arkansas has moved its back-to-school date from August 13 to August 24, but that date will not be pushed beyond August 26, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Thursday.

In their decision, state officials wanted to give “school districts more time to make necessary adjustments for the blending learning environment. We are committed to schools, on-site instruction,” Hutchinson told reporters in Little Rock, before adding that “we believe this is the right decision.”

The governor also presented a three-prong approach to respond to infections in schools, ranging from a limited to a critical response. 

The latest numbers: The state recorded at least 802 new Covid-19 cases on Thursday, bringing the total number to approximately 26,052, Hutchinson said.

The new daily “case number is high but predictable,” the governor said.

With four new deaths reported Thursday, there have been a total of at least 309 people who have died from the virus, according to the Arkansas Department of Health.

3:57 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

California records 149 new Covid-19 deaths, a new daily record

From CNN's Cheri Mossburg

California has reported 149 Covid-related deaths, the most recorded in a single day for the state since the pandemic began.

“The mortality rates are still front and center and should be in your consciousness,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said.

With more than 7,000 new confirmed cases, Newsom warned that single-day numbers don’t always show a clear picture of trend lines. 

Using a seven-day average, the positivity rate in California stands at 7.1%, and the average case increase is just more than 8,000. 

Hospitalizations climbed 4% in the past day, but are up 44% over the past two weeks, Newsom noted. 

To note: These figures were released by Newsom in association with the Department of Public Health and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database, which is drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.

3:47 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

2 people test positive for Covid-19 ahead of Mike Pence's roundtable event

From CNN's Nikki Carvajal

Two people were asked to leave the site of a roundtable with Vice President Mike Pence after they tested positive for Covid-19, according to reports from the press pool traveling with the vice president.

Two people associated with the event had no symptoms of illness, a spokesperson for the campaign said. The spokesperson said it was part of routine testing of everyone who will be around the vice president during such events.

Pence is expected to speak at a roundtable to discuss the reopening of America. 

3:40 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

It's just after 3:30 p.m. in New York. Here's the latest on the coronavirus pandemic.

More than 3 million cases of novel coronavirus have been reported in the US, including at least 132,803 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

If you're just joining us, here are the latest developments:

  • CDC school guidelines: Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that the guidelines for reopening schools will not be revised. This comes after the White House called them "very tough" and "expensive." President Trump has also threatened to withhold funding from districts that do not reopen.
  • Unemployment: Another 1.3 million people filed first-time claims for unemployment aid last week in the US. Weekly jobless claims have been falling for more than three months since their peak in the last week of March.
  • States' reopening: States containing over 40% of the population have now put reopening on hold, and states with another 30% have already reversed part of their reopening.  
  • Hotspots: Arizona has led the nation with the highest seven-day average of new coronavirus cases per 100,000 people for more than a month –– today, the state is averaging 48.10 per 100,000 people. Florida has the second highest rate at 43.08 per 100,000 people. 
  • Sports: Ivy League sports, including football, will be postponed this fall due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Ivy League is the first Division I conference to drop out of the upcoming college football season. 
  • Vaccine: US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said the race to develop a vaccine is a collaborative, global effort. The US currently has four major investments in vaccine candidates that work in three different ways.
3:54 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

California lawmaker hospitalized with coronavirus after outbreak at state Capitol

From CNN's Jenn Selva

Tom Lackey
Tom Lackey Rich Pedroncelli/AP/FILE

A California assemblyman has been hospitalized with complications from Covid-19 after working in the state Capitol where several other lawmakers were infected with coronavirus.

Assemblyman Tom Lackey, a Republican from Palmdale, tested positive for coronavirus and has been hospitalized at Palmdale Regional Medical Center, his chief of staff George Andrews said in a statement.

Lackey’s last day working at the state Capitol in Sacramento was on June 26, Andrews told CNN. That’s the same day Assemblywoman Autumn Burke, a Democrat from Marina Del Rey, said she was exposed to the virus at the Capitol building and later tested positive for Covid-19.

At least six people linked to the outbreak at the state Capitol have tested positive, and all of them "work within the Assembly," according to the assembly speaker’s office.

It’s unclear if Lackey is included in that number, or where he was exposed to the virus. The Capitol building remains closed until further notice for "cleaning and sanitizing."

3:37 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

FDA issues warning to company for claiming its products kill Covid-19

From CNN's Gisela Crespo

The US Food Drug Administration has issued a warning to Ionogen, LLC, for selling a solution for hands and skin that the company claims kills the virus that causes Covid-19. 

In a letter sent Tuesday, the FDA said the company wrote on its website that the product "Ionopure Skin & Hands" meets the standard for killing coronavirus.

"Which of your products kill COVID-19 (Coronavirus)? The World Health Organization has stated that any chlorine-based solution of at least 500 ppm FAC will kill COVID-19. Ionopure Skin & Hands... meet[s] this standard," the agency said Ionogen claimed on its website.

The FDA said these products have not been approved by the agency and asked the company to review its website, product labels and promotional materials "to ensure that you are not misleadingly representing your products as safe and effective for a Covid-19-related use."

The FDA also said that until the company takes corrective action, it will be on a list of firms and websites that have received warning letters from the FDA "concerning the sale or distribution of Covid-19 related products."

On Thursday, the Ionopure website included the following below the description of the various Ionopure Skin & Hands products: "These statements are not intended to substitute the advice given by a licensed healthcare professional. Ionopure products have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any medical condition or disease."

3:21 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

Florida governor says he supports schools reopening and hosting RNC outdoors

From CNN’s Angela Barajas

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks during a press conference about the coronavirus held at the Pan American Hospital on July 07, 2020 in Miami, Florida.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks during a press conference about the coronavirus held at the Pan American Hospital on July 07, 2020 in Miami, Florida. Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said he "would not hesitate" sending his own kids to school when the academic year begins. All of his three children are below the age of four and not of school age.

"Educating our kids is absolutely essential, we have put them to the back of the line," he said at a news conference this afternoon in Jacksonville.

When asked about safety precautions for the Republican National Convention, DeSantis supported hosting the convention in an outdoor space, citing safety for all of those in attendance. DeSantis said no plan had officially been submitted to host the convention in an outdoor space. 

On the state of Covid: DeSantis said staffing was proving to be an issue statewide. He alluded to seasonal shortages as part of the reason. Hundreds of contract nurses are expected to be deployed statewide in addition to 100 additional nurses being sent to the Tampa area as well as another 100 nurses to Miami-Dade. 

The governor announced antibody testing in Jacksonville is available for the general public. DeSantis said the state is moving forward contracting with self-swabbing vendors to expedite the test results. Currently, testing results are taking longer than 48 hours. 

3:13 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

US is collaborating on Covid-19 vaccine with international community, HHS secretary says

From CNN’s Andrea Kane

Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar speaks during a White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing at the Department of Education building in Washington, DC on July 8.
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar speaks during a White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing at the Department of Education building in Washington, DC on July 8. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar on Thursday described the global race to develop a coronavirus vaccine saying, “It’s a very tight international collaboration here; we're all working towards a common goal.”

Azar explained that the United States currently has four major investments in vaccine candidates that work in three different ways: the Moderna vaccine, the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine, the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine and the Novavax vaccine.

“So we now have major bets in all three of the major potential platforms for vaccines. With each of them we will drive towards manufacturing to have tens of millions of doses by this fall and hundreds of millions into the beginning of next year," he said during a virtual summit hosted by The Hill.

"And phase two, three clinical trials for many of them will be beginning just later this month, probably,” he added. “I like to say the return on investment for a vaccine is almost infinite in terms of the investment that you would make.”

Azar said that while some trials and the manufacturing will occur in the United States, other countries won’t be shut out.

“We're investing in US manufacturing and US fill-and-finish capacity so that we're not dependent on any movement of product across borders from outside the United States. But in no way would we do anything to preclude development for the rest of the world,” he said. 

3:10 p.m. ET, July 9, 2020

Gyms and parks in São Paulo, Brazil, to reopen starting Monday

From Rodrigo Pedroso in Sao Paulo

A man and his dogs seen in front of a sign that reads "Park Closed' at the gates of Ibirapuera Park in Sao Paulo, Brazil on March 21.
A man and his dogs seen in front of a sign that reads "Park Closed' at the gates of Ibirapuera Park in Sao Paulo, Brazil on March 21. Rodrigo Paiva/Getty Images

Gyms in the Brazilian city of São Paulo will start reopening along with 70 of the city’s municipal parks starting Monday, the city's Mayor Bruno Covas said Thursday.

Two of the city’s biggest parks, Ibirapuera and do Carmo parks, will operate Monday to Friday from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. local time. Other parks will be open between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and all parks will be closed on weekends.

The parks will have controlled entry and will operate at 40% capacity, while the gyms can only operate six hours a day at 30% capacity. Masks are required in gyms and parks.

Some context: Last Monday, the city reopened bars, restaurants and beauty salons with restrictions, and extended the hours of operation for street commerce, malls, real estate agencies and car dealerships.

The state of São Paulo has 8,350 new cases of Covid-19 as of Thursday, according to state health secretary data, bringing the total number of cases in the state to 349,715.

The state recorded an additional 330 deaths on Thursday, bringing the state’s death toll to 17,118, more deaths than in all of Peru.