August 11 coronavirus news

By Joshua Berlinger, Adam Renton, Melissa Macaya, Meg Wagner and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 12:02 a.m. ET, August 12, 2020
12 Posts
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8:18 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Putin says Russia has registered "world first" coronavirus vaccine

From CNN's Zahra Ullah in Moscow

A lab technician works on production of the 'Medgamal' Covid-19 vaccine, developed by the Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology on August 6 in Moscow, Russia.
A lab technician works on production of the 'Medgamal' Covid-19 vaccine, developed by the Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology on August 6 in Moscow, Russia. Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Russia has approved a coronavirus vaccine developed by the Moscow-based Gamaleya Institute for use, President Vladimir Putin said on Russian state TV on Tuesday.

Speaking in a live teleconference with his cabinet ministers, Putin said the vaccine had gone through all the necessary checks.

"A vaccine against coronavirus has been registered for the first time in the world this morning," Putin said, adding: "I know that it works quite effectively, it forms a stable immunity."
"So we're the first to have registered. I hope our foreign colleagues' work will move as well, and a lot of products will appear on an international market that could be used," Putin said.

The Russian President revealed that one of his daughters has taken the vaccine; he said she had a slightly higher temperature following the injections, but that she now feels better.

"I know this very well too, as one of my daughters has been inoculated with the vaccine," he said.
"I think that this way she participated in the experiment. After the first injection her temperature was 38 [degrees Celsius], the next day 37-something and that's it. After the second injection the temperature also got a bit higher but that's it, then it went back down. Now she feels well."

Reports about Russia's vaccine have come amid concerns about its safety, effectiveness and allegations that the country has cut essential corners in its development. 

Russian officials told CNN previously that crucial Phase 3 trials would take place after state registration of the vaccine. 

Russia has released no scientific data on its vaccine testing and CNN is unable to verify its claimed safety or effectiveness.  

Critics say the country's push for a vaccine comes amid political pressure from the Kremlin, which is keen to portray Russia as a global scientific force.

4:48 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Coronavirus has led to a resurgence of "little wine holes" in Italy

From CNN's Marianna Cerini

Buchette del Vino
Buchette del Vino

Bars and restaurants around the world are having to rethink the way they interact with customers during the pandemic. In the Italian city of Florence, some are looking to the past: using centuries-old wine windows to dole out food and drinks.

Rising just above ground level, blink and you might miss these tiny openings, called "buchette del vino," (literally "little wine holes") in Italian. The small windows were used to sell wine-to-go during the Renaissance period, and were intended to be cheaper, direct-to-consumer alternatives to taverns and other drinking dens -- not to mention a discreet way for merchants to avoid paying taxes on the alcoholic libations they were peddling.

Those merchants were Florence's elites, many of whom had the foot-tall windows built into street-facing walls of their palatial residences, usually next to the main entrance. Back in the 1500s, a number of the city's aristocrats were also major wine producers in the surrounding countryside. The "buchette" allowed them to trade (or rather, have servants do it for them) their spirits straight from their in-house cellars to basically anyone, with a reduced need for physical contact.

In May, as Italy eased its two-months-long lockdown, several F&B businesses in Florence, who happened to be based in premises with existing buchette, decided to reopen them, capitalizing on the design's minimal-contact aspect. Wine, Aperol spritzes, ice creams and sandwiches have since been served through the holes, at a safe distance.

Read more:

3:18 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

At least 66 NFL players have opted out of the upcoming season because of the pandemic

From CNN's Calum Trenaman and Jill Martin

More than 60 NFL players have opted out of the 2020 season because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Players had until 4 p.m. ET on Thursday to decide and after the deadline passed, a spokesperson for the NFL told CNN that out of 2,880 players, 66 players chose to opt out.

That figure could be higher -- both NBC's Pro Football Talk and CBS reported the figure was 67 players.

The New England Patriots are the team most affected, with eight players opting out of the 2020 season -- prompting much ribald "tanking for Trevor" comment.

Highly-rated Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is expected to be drafted first overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, and some fans have jokingly suggested that the team's performance this upcoming season might be reflected in a desire to gain that number one pick.

The Patriots have lost starters like linebacker Dont'a Hightower and safety Patrick Chung, who have both won three Super Bowls with the team.

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2:29 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Their father's death spurred them to ask people to spend 60 seconds each week to mourn those lost to Covid-19

From CNN's Samantha Waldenberg

Every Friday, Carolyn Freyer-Jones encourages her family and friends to participate in #thefridayminute to honor her father Hugh and others who have died from the coronavirus pandemic.

The idea came out of a discussion with her brother about how sometime down the road, there may be a national day of mourning for those who have lost a loved one to Covid-19.

"Let's not wait. Let's not wait for a national day of mourning in the future when we all get a day off and it's after hundreds of thousands of lives are gone, homes lost, jobs and businesses gone." Carolyn Freyer-Jones recalls telling her brother. "Let's create something now that we can share and that can be shared with everyone, that people everywhere can do right now."

At noon eastern time, she wants people to take a minute to reflect and pray, and even send love and support to families who have been affected by coronavirus this year.

"The minute is a way to remind ourselves that we are all connected regardless of situation or circumstance. My father is everyone's father, or husband, or grandfather, or friend," Carolyn Freyer-Jones told CNN.

During this minute and several times throughout the past few weeks, Carolyn has been thinking about her own father, who she said died from coronavirus complications on his 86th birthday.

Read more:

1:45 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Nearly 5.1 million coronavirus cases have been identified in the US since the pandemic began

At least 5,094,400 coronavirus cases and 163,463 virus-related deaths have been identified in the United States since the pandemic began, according to Johns Hopkins University.

On Monday, Johns Hopkins reported 49,536 new cases of Covid-19 and 525 reported deaths.

The figures include 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:

1:20 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Citing coronavirus, Trump administration weighs more restrictions on US-Mexico border

From CNN's Priscilla Alvarez

A US Customs and Border Protection officer speaks to people as they cross the border from Mexicali, Mexico, to Calexico, California, on July 22.
A US Customs and Border Protection officer speaks to people as they cross the border from Mexicali, Mexico, to Calexico, California, on July 22. Gregory Bull/AP

The Trump administration is considering ways to restrict entry on the US-Mexico border that could include US citizens and lawful permanent residents over coronavirus concerns, according to a source familiar with the matter.

It's the latest attempt by the administration to seal off US borders, citing the virus. In March, the administration invoked a public health law to swiftly remove migrants, including children, who are apprehended at the border. That action, including a series of other travel restrictions, has been extended over the course of the pandemic.

The options being weighed by the administration would also likely rely on authorities from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the source said. The New York Times first reported on the possibility of barring Americans from returning to the US on a limited basis amid fears they may be infected with the coronavirus.

"Career professionals at the CDC are working on an overall approach to pandemic control both now and in the future," an administration official with knowledge of ongoing discussions told CNN. "The regulation is in draft form and subject (to) change. This is an ongoing process and any reporting on this would be extremely premature."

CNN reached out to the CDC and the Department of Homeland Security, which declined to comment.

A draft memo obtained by the Times says any move to block citizens and legal permanent residents must "include appropriate protections to ensure that no Constitutional rights are infringed" and would apply "only in the rarest of circumstances."

Read more:

12:33 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Australia’s internal borders are going to stay closed

From CNN's Angus Watson in Sydney

Airline staff walk past empty baggage carousels at the Sydney Domestic Airport Terminal arrivals area on August 7 in Sydney.
Airline staff walk past empty baggage carousels at the Sydney Domestic Airport Terminal arrivals area on August 7 in Sydney. Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images

Australia’s states and territories will remain closed off from one another in the coming days, state and federal leaders said, as authorities continue to try to stop the latest wave of coronavirus cases in the country.

The state of Victoria, where Melbourne is located, has been dealing with a major upswing in cases in recent weeks. Authorities in Victoria identified 321 new Covid-19 cases Monday and 19 deaths.

New South Wales detected 22 new cases on Monday -- the highest in a single day since April.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Monday that “it's unlikely that we were able to move back to a restriction-free society” by Christmas. 

“I doubt that is going to happen. I doubt the medical position will enable that. And so you've just got to follow the medical evidence on all of these, whether it's borders or whether it's the restrictions on trade or of local businesses or whatever it happens to be," Morrison said.

Here are some of the regional policies:

Victoria remains closed to all of Australia’s states and territories.

Northern Territory Chief Minister Michael Gunner said Tuesday that he plans for an 18-month border closure between his region and anywhere considered a hotspot -- including Australia's two largest cities, Melbourne and Sydney.

“Cancel your Christmas holiday plans, stay here in the Northern Territory," Gunner said in an interview with public broadcaster ABC on Tuesday. “We’re working towards an 18-month-window from today, towards the end of next year, is how we’re starting to resource our borders. We’re recruiting extra police. We’re making sure we keep those hard border controls in place.” 

Western Australia and Tasmania remain closed to people from all other states.

Queensland and South Australia are closed to residents of Victoria and are quarantining anyone traveling in from New South Wales. 

The Australian Capital Territory requires anyone traveling to the capital from Sydney or the state of Victoria to undergo a quarantine upon arrival.


12:02 a.m. ET, August 11, 2020

Japan's new daily Covid-19 infections drop below 1,000 for the first time in nearly two weeks

From CNN's Yoko Wakatsuki in Tokyo

People wait for a train at Shinjuku station on August 4 in Tokyo.
People wait for a train at Shinjuku station on August 4 in Tokyo. Yuichi Yamazaki/Getty Images

The Japanese Ministry of Health said 842 new cases of Covid-19 were identified on Monday, the first time in 13 days that the number of infections reported in a day dropped below quadruple digits.

Positive signs also emerged in Tokyo, where many of the new cases have been recorded. The Japanese capital recorded 196 infections Monday, the first time the daily case count there has dropped below 200 in two weeks.

Five coronavirus-related deaths were reported throughout the country on Monday, authorities said.

To date, 49,630 cases of the virus have been identified in Japan and at least 1,065 people have died.

An important caveat: Economic Minister Yasunori Nishimura, who is in charge of the nation's coronavirus policies, said in a news conference on Tuesday that the drop in cases could be due to the fact that fewer tests were conducted over a holiday weekend.

Nishimura called for continued vigilance and asked citizens to abide by safety measures in their daily lives, as the recent infections have been taking place more in offices, schools and during social activities.

11:28 p.m. ET, August 10, 2020

Expert says children may be able to spread coronavirus like they spread the common cold

From CNN Health’s Lauren Mascarenhas

Children may be able to spread Covid-19 just as easily as they spread another type of coronavirus -- the common cold, said William Haseltine, a former professor at Harvard Medical School.

“There’s every reason to suspect that this virus, even though it can kill you, behaves pretty much like a cold virus, in terms of transmission. Who drives colds? Children drive colds,” Haseltine told CNN’s Anderson Cooper Monday.
“And that's true of almost all respiratory diseases, including the colds that are caused by coronaviruses. And this is one of those cousins,” he added. “It even uses the same receptor in the nasal passages as one of the cold viruses. It just happens to be a cold virus that also kills.”

Haseltine warned that children can be infected and infect others, so they should wear masks.

He said that children up to 5 years old can be “highly infectious to other people."

"It turns out they have a thousand times more virus in their nose than you need to infect, so they're very, very contagious," Haseltine said.