Arizona reports 134 Covid-19 deaths in last 24 hours
From CNN’s Konstantin Toropin
At least 134 people have died from Covid-19 in Arizona over the last 24 hours, state data shows.
Arizona reported 147 deaths from Covid-19 on Saturday, state data shows. The previous record high was 117 daily deaths on July 7.
The state, which has been experiencing a surge in Covid-19 cases, has improved many of its metrics over the last week. Hospitalizations, ventilator use, and emergency room visits from those with the disease have all decreased from last week’s levels.
One thing to note: These numbers were released by Arizona’s public health agency, and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.
This post has updated with the latest details on Arizona's record high death toll.
11:50 a.m. ET, July 21, 2020
Trump gets "multiple" coronavirus tests a day, White House says
From CNN's Kevin Liptak
President Trump receives multiple coronavirus tests every day, the White House said Tuesday.
Explaining his reluctance to wear a mask in public, press secretary Kayleigh McEneny described Trump as the "most tested man in America" who doesn't risk spreading the virus to others.
"He’s tested more than anyone, multiple times a day," she said. "And we believe that he’s acting appropriately."
Asked a follow up about the frequency of President Trump's coronavirus tests, McEnany would say only that he is tested often but would not get into further details.
“Sometimes it is more than one time a day," she said.
Previously, the White House had indicated Trump received regular coronavirus tests, as did people who come into close proximity to him. But the frequency of the tests — multiple per day — wasn't known.
The White House utilizes the Abbott rapid test, which has drawn scrutiny for high rates of false negatives.
White House disputes administration is blocking money for testing in next stimulus package
From CNN's Jason Hoffman
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany disputed that the administration is blocking additional funds for testing and contact tracing as part of the phase four stimulus package.
“No one is blocking any money from testing,” McEnany claimed at her briefing Tuesday morning.
McEnany said that there is currently $10 billion dollars is unspent funds for testing, and in the phase four negotiations, the administration wants to “make sure there is money that is targeted for money that makes the most sense.”
“We’re willing to put in money for targeted testing that makes sense, not just dumping money into a pot that already contains $10 billion dollars,” she added.
Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Susan Collins of Maine, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia and others stressed to reporters on Monday that more money for testing is essential in the next stimulus, breaking with the White House posture that more money for the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for contact tracing and testing shouldn't be included in the next round of aid.
11:42 a.m. ET, July 21, 2020
Less than 16% of Florida's ICU beds are available
From CNN’s Randi Kaye
The ICU bed availability statewide in Florida now stands at 15.98%. These are “available adult ICU beds,” per the Agency for Healthcare Administration.
This is a decrease in available beds. On Monday, the available ICU bed count was 18.1%.
There are 54 hospitals in 27 different counties that are now at 0% capacity — meaning they have no ICU beds left.
11:23 a.m. ET, July 21, 2020
McConnell says he wants GOP stimulus proposal to include $105 billion to help reopen schools
From CNN's Ali Zaslav, Ted Barrett, Manu Raju, Lauren Fox and Phill Mattingly
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Tuesday that the Republican stimulus proposal will likely include $105 billion in funding to help reopen schools across the country.
“This majority is preparing legislation that will send $105 billion, so that educators have the resources they need to safely reopen,” McConnell said in a floor speech.
In comparison, Democratic leadership has proposed $430 billion as part of their next relief package to help schools reopen.
McConnel broadly outlined what will be in the GOP proposal of the next Covid-19 relief bill in a floor speech on Tuesday morning, which he said “are just some of the elements being discussed between Republicans and the administration” and will be released “very soon.”
He said it will likely include another round of direct payments to Americans and more targeted Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funding.
“We’ll also be proposing a targeted second round of the PPP with a special eye toward hard hit businesses,” McConnell said.
“Speaking of building on what worked in the CARES Act, we want another round of direct payments,” he continued.
The sticking points: Direct payments to Americans continues to be be a point of dispute as President Trump continues to push for it, while many Hill Republicans are hesitant.
“Direct payments to help American families keep driving our national comeback,” he said. “Helping to create more American jobs is an urgent moral priority, and these are just some of the policies we're discussing that will help that happen.”
The Kentucky Republican did not mention in his floor speech whether a payroll tax cut would be included in the bill, which has also been a point of contention between Trump and Congressional Republicans.
Trump has continued to tout the idea, while most Republicans have expressed they don’t support a payroll tax cut.
McConnell repeated his red line for liability protections in his floor remarks. He also mentioned there would be funding toward a vaccine, hospitals and testing. Healthcare is the “third major focus” of the bill, he reiterated.
“The federal government will continue to support hospitals, providers, and testing,” McConnell said.
11:10 a.m. ET, July 21, 2020
Florida reports more than 9,400 new coronavirus cases
From CNN's Tina Burnside
The state of Florida reported 9,440 new cases of Covid-19 and 134 additional deaths on Tuesday, according to data released by the Florida Department of Health.
This brings the state's total cases to at least 369,834 according to the state department of health. The statewide resident death toll is now 5,206.
Take a look at the numbers:
10:37 a.m. ET, July 21, 2020
Here's where the US stands on testing, according to CDC data
From CNN's Christina Maxouris
Americans are testing positive for coronavirus in record-breaking numbers across the US and the surge in cases is slowing down the time tests take.
Labs across the country are now facing what seems like an almost "infinite" demand, one expert says.
"We really do need to improve our turnaround times, primarily in areas and counties of outbreaks," Adm. Brett Giroir, a White House coronavirus task force member, said.
As the country approaches 4 million cases, Trump has repeatedly responded with the argument that the large number of US cases is evidence of the country's success with testing. But per CNN's fact check reporting, Trump's own officials and his Republican allies have acknowledged it's not true that a rising number of tests is the reason the number of cases has skyrocketed over the last month.
One telling piece of evidence that the spike is genuine: the percentage of people testing positive, a key measure of the true spread of the virus, has also spiked.
Giroir, who heads the US's testing efforts, said yesterday that there are probably fewer cases compared to April because of more testing, but “there is no question we are having a surge right now. We are approaching this with extreme seriousness.”
Giroir said yesterday that in June, states "really crushed" their testing goals of over 16 million tests, and now are routinely doing 750,000 to 800,000 tests per day.
Speaking in a hearing on Capitol Hill on July 2, Giroir told lawmakers that the US had performed more than 35 million Covid-19 tests and is now averaging "over 550,000 tests per day." With regards to the national stockpile, Giroir said he estimated the nation will have the capacity to perform 40 to 50 million tests per month by the fall.
But even these current numbers are well below the number of tests experts said the US should be doing now. In early May, a team at the Harvard Global Health Institute said the US should be testing at least 900,000 people a day by May 15.
According to a different group of experts, whose work was also supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, the US needed to deliver at least 5 million tests per day by early June to begin reopening. It said as many as 20 million tests per day would be needed to fully remobilize the economy, ideally by late July.
The "Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience," published by Harvard University's Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, argues that without widespread testing, state and local officials will get caught in cycles of opening up and then clamping down again on commerce and free movement.
More than 48 million Covid-19 tests have been reported in the US. The CDC dashboard notes that the agency includes both viral tests and antibody tests in its testing data.
More than 4.5 million of those tests have been positive.
Remember: Viral tests tell you if you currently have an infection with the virus that causes Covid-19. Antibody blood tests check for antibodies, which show if you had a previous infection with the virus. Those numbers represent the number of tests performed, and a single person may have been tested more than once.