July 20 coronavirus news

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8:23 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Mexico reports almost 300 dead from coronavirus in a single day

From journalist Karol Suarez in Mexico City

Workers from the Crematorio San Isidro prepare a person for cremation who died from the coronavirus on July 17, in Mexico City, Mexico.
Workers from the Crematorio San Isidro prepare a person for cremation who died from the coronavirus on July 17, in Mexico City, Mexico. Gerardo Vieyra/NurPhoto/Getty Images

Mexico's coronavirus epidemic is continuing to grow, with the country's death toll now nearing 40,000 people.

The Health Ministry reported 296 people died of the novel coronavirus in the past 24 hours on Sunday. To date, a total of 39,184 people have died of the coronavirus since the pandemic began. 

Mexican authorities also announced 5,311 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus on Sunday, bringing the country’s total number of infections to 344,224.

1:40 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Australian state reports 275 new coronavirus cases, only 28 linked to known outbreaks

From CNN's Eric Cheung in Hong Kong

Medical workers conduct testing for the coronavirus (COVID-19) at a drive-thru testing site in Melbourne, Australia on July 10, 2020.
Medical workers conduct testing for the coronavirus (COVID-19) at a drive-thru testing site in Melbourne, Australia on July 10, 2020. Recep Sakar/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

The Australian state of Victoria has reported 275 new coronavirus cases in the past day, most of which are still under investigation, State Premier Daniel Andrews announced at a press conference today.

Of the 275 new cases, 28 were linked to known outbreaks, while 247 are still being looked into by Victorian authorities.

Andrews also announced that a woman in her 80s had died due to Covid-19, bringing Victoria's death toll to 35.

The number of coronavirus-related patients in hospitals in Victoria has risen to 147 with 31 in ICU, Andrews said.

On July 8, Metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire, a regional area of Victoria, returned to a Stage Three lockdown for six weeks amid a rise in cases. 

People are only allowed to leave their homes to buy food, go to work, receive or give care and exercise, according to the Victoria government.

1:40 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Japan records 510 new Covid-19 cases, including Osaka's highest number since April 9

From Junko Ogura in Tokyo and Eric Cheung in Hong Kong

Workers disinfect inside of Osaka City Juso Hospital ahead of reopening of outpatient care in Osaka, Japan, on July 9.
Workers disinfect inside of Osaka City Juso Hospital ahead of reopening of outpatient care in Osaka, Japan, on July 9. The Yomiuri Shimbun/AP

Osaka, the second largest prefecture in Japan, announced its highest daily total of new coronavirus cases yet, half of which it said were still untraceable.

Japan recorded 510 coronavirus cases on Sunday, the Health Ministry said in a statement released today. Osaka confirmed 89 infections on Sunday, including 59 untraceable cases.

This is the highest daily figure reported in the prefecture since April 9.

Another 188 cases were reported in Tokyo on Sunday, the first time in four days that the number fell below 200, the statement read.

No new deaths were reported on Sunday.

The total number of confirmed cases across Japan is now 25,808, which includes 25,096 land cases and 712 cases from the Diamond Princess cruise ship. 

1:40 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Fewer than a quarter of Japanese in favor of holding Tokyo Olympics next year, survey finds

From Eric Cheung in Hong Kong and Yoko Wakatsuki in Tokyo

Ls than a quarter of Japanese are looking forward to the Tokyo Olympics next year amid the Covid-19 outbreak, according to a survey published by Kyodo News on Sunday.

The survey showed only 23.9% of Japanese residents supported holding the Summer Games beginning on July 23 next year as scheduled. 

Meanwhile, 36.4% of respondents believed the games should be further postponed, while another 33.7% said the event should be canceled amid the pandemic.

Respondents said the main reasons were because the virus was unlikely to be contained anytime soon, and that the Japanese government should prioritize its fight against Covid-19 in the country.

Organizers have rescheduled the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to start July 23 next year due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

Kyodo said the survey sampled 1,041 respondents, who were chosen from randomly selected eligible voters' households and mobile numbers.

8:23 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Delta Airlines to begin asking passengers unable to wear face mask to consider staying home

From CNN's Pete Muntean

Dta is strengthening its policy on face masks starting Monday – telling passengers who can’t wear a mask because of a health condition to consider staying home.

The airline said if not, the passenger must complete a health screening before being allowed to fly. 

“We encourage customers who are prevented from wearing a mask due to a health condition to reconsider travel," Delta told CNN in a statement.
"If they decide to travel, they will be welcome to fly upon completing a virtual consultation prior to departure at the airport to ensure everyone’s safety, because nothing is more important.”

The consultation will be conducted in private, over the phone. Depending on the outcome of that screening, Delta will decide whether the passenger will be allowed to travel without wearing a mask.

Delta will partner with STAT-MD for the consultations.

STAT-MD “provides inflight emergency consultation as well as fitness to fly ground screening,” according to its website.

8:23 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

87 doctors sign letter to Arizona governor urging him not to reopen schools until at least October

From CNN's Miguel Marquez in Phoenix

Ehty-seven doctors have signed a letter to Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey urging him not to reopen schools until at least October. 

Ducey has pushed the traditional August 1 school opening to an “aspirational” date of August 17. He has indicated that he’ll make a decision on school reopenings next week. 

"We are a group of health care providers from across the great state of Arizona. Many of us are also parents of school-age children," the letter said. "We share a common concern: that the tremendous pressure to return to in-person schooling in August is ill-advised and dangerous given the uncontrolled spread of COVID-19 in our community." 

When the governor shut schools down and issued a Safer at Home order on March 30 there were about 1,000 positive cases a week. Last week Arizona logged about 26,000 cases. 

Currently, the seven-day average positivity rate is the highest in the country at 24.4%. 

1:41 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Golf legend Jack Nicklaus reveals he and his wife tested positive for Covid-19 in March

From CNN's Homero De la Fuente

Gf legend Jack Nicklaus announced Sunday he and his wife, Barbara, tested positive for Covid-19 in March. The 80-year-old, who is hosting this week's Memorial Tournament in Dublin, Ohio, told Jim Nantz on Sunday’s CBS telecast he dealt with a sore throat and a cough and that his wife was asymptomatic.

It didn’t last very long, and we were very, very fortunate, very lucky. Barbara and I are both of the age that is an at-risk age," the 18-time major champion said.

Nicklaus said he and his wife tested positive on March 13 and stayed at their home in North Palm Beach, Florida, until they recovered April 20. Nicklaus tested positive for the virus four times and his wife tested positive three times, but both have since tested negative for the virus and positive for the antibodies.

Our hearts go out to the people who did lose their lives and their families. We were just a couple of the lucky ones, so we feel very strong about working with those who are taking care of those who have Covid-19,” Nicklaus said.

This week’s Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club, where Nicklaus designed the course, has been played without spectators in attendance.

8:24 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Los Angeles reports highest number of hospitalizations in a day

From CNN's Paul Vercammen and Jennifer Selva

Health officials in Los Angeles have reported the highest number of hospitalizations in a day with 2,216 people hospitalized, up from the previous record of 2,193, set July 15.

Eleven people died and 2,848 new cases were reported Sunday, according to a Los Angeles Department of Public Health news release. This is a significant drop in both of those numbers from the past week.

More than half of all new cases reported in Los Angeles were in people younger than 41, the release said.

Across the state, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) reports that both hospitalizations and the positivity rate continue to trend upward in the 14-day average.

The seven-day average number of new cases has surpassed 9,000, with 9,127 per day. 

The 32 counties on the state’s "watch list" that have shut down most indoor activities are home to 80% of California’s population, according to CPDH.

California has 384,692 confirmed cases and 7,685 deaths due to coronavirus.

8:25 a.m. ET, July 20, 2020

Brazil's President greets crowd of supporters despite being positive for Covid-19

From CNN’s Taylor Barnes and journalists Rodrigo Pedroso and Juliana Arini

Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right President of Brazil and his country’s highest-profile Covid-19 patient, took a walk on the grounds of his presidential palace Sunday afternoon and greeted a crowd of supporters, video broadcast live on his Facebook page showed.

While Bolsonaro was wearing a mask, he was closely flanked by a number of aides who did not appear to consistently maintain a significant social distance from him. He repeatedly lowered his mask while talking, including when aides were nearby. 

Supporters were separated from the President by a small water canal, but two people crossed over to Bolsonaro's side. One man helped a second man, who appeared to have a physical disability, walk close to the President for a greeting.

“Thank you for the trust,” Bolsonaro told the pair. “I want to make a government for you all.”

Bolsonaro also raised what appeared to be a small box of medicine. During the pandemic, Bolsonaro has repeatedly endorsed the use of the drug hydroxychloroquine, even though the Brazilian Society of Infectious Disease issued a report Friday calling for medical professionals to stop using the drug for Covid-19 patients. Bolsonaro has said he has taken it since testing positive for the novel coronavirus.