October 10 coronavirus news

By Ben Westcott, Brett McKeehan, Tara John, Fernando Alfonso III and Amir Vera, CNN

Updated 8:07 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020
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11:56 p.m. ET, October 9, 2020

US FDA issues warning to herbal medicine companies offering Covid-19 products

From CNN Health’s Leanna Faulk

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued warning letters to two herbal medicine companies telling them to stop trying to sell products which they allege are effective against the coronavirus.

Colorado-based Prairie Dawn Herbs was warned after the FDA investigated its website and social media sites and learned the company was selling products it claimed could protect the immune system and combat symptoms of Covid-19, the FDA said in a news release Friday.

“Based on our review, this product is an unapproved new drug under section 505 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act,” the agency wrote in a warning letter it sent the company Wednesday. “Furthermore, this product is a misbranded drug."

The FDA cited a monthly newsletter posted to the company’s website offering 20% off several herbal products (Chest Tea, Echinacea Tincture, Mentholated Salve, Eucalyptus Oil, Thieves Oil and Echinacea Glycerite) for the duration of the outbreak “due to the continued threat of COVID-19.” 

The FDA also warned Griffo Botanicals for selling herbal tincture products it said could treat symptoms of Covid-19.

There are no FDA-approved products to prevent or treat coronavirus. One antiviral drug, remdesivir, has emergency use authorization for treatment but must be used in a hospital under physician supervision.

The FDA says that until the companies took corrective action, they would 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.” 

As of Friday afternoon, the COVID-19 Special was still available for purchase on the Prairie Dawn Herbs website. There was no mention of Covid-19 treatments on the Griffo Botanicals website.

11:56 p.m. ET, October 9, 2020

Florida's Covid-19 situation will be like a "house on fire" within weeks, infectious disease expert says

From CNN's Shelby Lin Erdman

Florida will be “like a house on fire” in a matter of weeks because the state has dropped coronavirus precautions, and President Donald Trump probably should not hold a rally there right now, infectious disease specialist Mike Osterholm said Friday. 

“Florida is ripe for another large outbreak,” Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Friday. “What they've done is opened up everything as if nothing had ever happened there and you and I could be talking probably in eight to 10 weeks, and I will likely bet that Florida will be a house on fire. “

Trump, who has been battling Covid-19 for the past week, is heading to Florida Monday for a campaign rally. 

Osterholm said it’s probably not a good idea to hold a rally in the state right now, even if it’s held outside. The state has reported 2,900 new infections in the past day, according to Johns Hopkins University.

“The challenge we have is helping the American people understand if you bring people together, even when they're outdoors, it's less risk of transmission being close together outdoors, but it's surely not zero," he said.

Trump is also planning an outdoor gathering at the White House Saturday and said he’ll address the crowd from a balcony.

Osterholm said attending that event isn’t a good idea either.

“I wouldn't go right now because I think the White House itself has a fair number of infections," he said.

Trump was released from hospital Monday and other administration staffers are still battling the virus.


11:53 p.m. ET, October 9, 2020

UK's Boris Johnson will announce new Covid-19 restrictions on Monday

From CNN's Simon Cullen in London

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson will announce new coronavirus restrictions on Monday as the government tries to curb a surge in new cases. 

A Downing Street spokesperson said the details will be outlined in a statement to the House of Commons.

The UK recorded 13,864 new cases on Friday, which is lower than the previous 24 hours. But there has been a sharp upward trend in recent weeks.

Large parts of the UK are already under local lockdowns.