October 19 coronavirus news

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

Updated 12:03 a.m. ET, October 20, 2020
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11:55 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

Florida reports less than 2,000 coronavirus cases for first time in a week 

From CNN’s Tina Burnside

People arrive at a drive-through COVID-19 testing site at Eastern Florida State College on October 9 in Palm Bay, Florida.
People arrive at a drive-through COVID-19 testing site at Eastern Florida State College on October 9 in Palm Bay, Florida. Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto/Getty Images

The Florida Department of Health is reporting at least 1,707 new cases of Covid-19 and approximately 54 additional deaths on Monday, according to the Florida Department of Health.

Monday’s daily coronavirus case count is the first time in a week that the state has reported less than two thousand cases, according to data released by the Department of Health.

The state now has a total of at least 756,727 coronavirus cases, state data shows, and the resident death toll now stands at approximately 16,222.

Note: These numbers were released by Florida’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.

11:47 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

Many nursing home residents with coronavirus don’t show symptoms prior to testing, study shows

From CNN’s Lauren Mascarenhas

Many nursing home residents with coronavirus don’t show symptoms prior to testing, according to new research published Monday.

Elizabeth White of Brown University and colleagues studied 5,400 Covid-19 patients at 350 skilled nursing facilities in the between March 16 and July 15.

More than 40% of them had no symptoms, the team reported in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

Another 19% of cases were presymptomatic, meaning the residents had no symptoms before being tested, but developed symptoms in the 14 days after the test. 

The researchers say that the high numbers of asymptomatic and presymptomatic residents with coronavirus they identified indicate the importance of universal testing.

11:37 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

City of New Orleans ramps up enforcement on French Quarter crowds

From CNN's Tina Burnside

A street artist performs at New Orleans' French Quarter on Saturday, October 17, when the city eased restrictions on bars and restaurants.
A street artist performs at New Orleans' French Quarter on Saturday, October 17, when the city eased restrictions on bars and restaurants. Lan Wei/Xinhua/Getty

The City of New Orleans says tougher enforcement will be in place following reports of overcrowding in the French Quarter over the weekend. 

In a statement released on Sunday, the city said they have been made aware of the large crowds in the French Quarter and says NOPD along with the enforcement task force were on hand to address all issues. 

New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell moved the city into Phase 3.2 on Saturday, which eased restrictions on bars and restaurants. The city says for the most part, businesses and individuals have been in compliance. 

The city says reports of "bad actors will be investigated and met with enforcement action when necessary. 

"Our people have put in the work which has allowed us to ease restrictions, but actions that lead to super spreader events will not be condoned. We cannot go back," city hall spokesperson Taylor M. Jackson said in a statement. 

The city of New Orleans says they continue to monitor these situations closely. 

12:15 p.m. ET, October 19, 2020

UK records more than 18,000 new Covid-19 cases 

From CNN’s Sarah Dean in London 

Signs are put in place at the new walk-through Covid testing centre in Dundee, Scotland. The test centre uses a system of connected trailers cleaned using dry ice, the first site in Scotland to have this capability.
Signs are put in place at the new walk-through Covid testing centre in Dundee, Scotland. The test centre uses a system of connected trailers cleaned using dry ice, the first site in Scotland to have this capability. Jane Barlow/PA Images/Getty Images

The UK has recorded another 18,804 Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours, according to government data published Monday. 

The number of deaths reported rose to 80, up from 67 reported on Sunday.

11:49 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer is “hopeful” about an agreement on stimulus deal today

From CNN's Aditi Sangal

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (center) walks to the House floor at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, October 1.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (center) walks to the House floor at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, October 1. Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg/Getty Images

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer says he is "hopeful" that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin can come to an agreement on the stimulus deal today, he told CNN’s Poppy Harlow.

Speaker Pelosi set a Tuesday deadline for her and Secretary Mnuchin to reconcile significant policy disputes if they want to pass a relief bill before November 3. A deal has evaded negotiators for months as the Trump administration and Pelosi have been hundreds of billions of dollars apart on topline numbers -- as well as what should be included.

“The devil is in the details,” Rep. Hoyer said Monday. “They're not offering anything for states and local, which we need. They're not offering anything for earned income tax credits for the people who are most struggling but they’re working. They're not offering to do testing pursuant to a plan. They say they’re going to take our number but then they radically changed it.”

President Trump abruptly shut down stimulus negotiations earlier this month, only to completely reverse his position days later, sign off on a larger $1.8 trillion topline number and tweet "Go big or go home" on stimulus funding.

But that’s only one hurdle down, Hoyer says.

“I think [Pelosi and Mnuchin] can come to a deal. They came to four deals that passed overwhelmingly, the two of them," he said Monday. “The problem is yes, the President says 1.8, and the Secretary now says 1.8, but then he goes over to McConnell’s office and [McConnell] says, 'I can't buy that number.’” 

“You can hear my voice, I'm frustrated, others are frustrated,” he added.

Watch the interview:

11:15 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

US-Canada border to remain closed to non-essential traffic until at least Nov. 21

From CNN’s Paula Newton

Empty lanes at the Canada-U.S. border in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec, Canada, on September 16.
Empty lanes at the Canada-U.S. border in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec, Canada, on September 16. Christinne Muschi/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Canada announced Monday that the US-Canada border will remain closed until at least Nov. 21. 

Canada’s public safety minister Bill Blair tweeted, “Our decisions will continue to be based on the best public health advice available to keep Canadians safe.”

Essential cross-border traffic for commercial goods and essential workers will continue with many of those workers exempt from Canada’s mandatory 14-day quarantine for anyone entering the country. 

The border restrictions were first imposed in March and have been renewed by mutual agreement every month since. 

Earlier this month, Canada loosened some border restrictions on compassionate grounds.

Family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents, including couples, adult children, grandchildren, siblings and grandparents can enter Canada but must complete a 14-day quarantine. 

Canada says other foreign nationals can apply to come to Canada on compassionate grounds given illness or death of family and friends. 

11:12 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

The health sector in French cities is "exhausted" and needs help, one mayor says

From CNN’s Sarah Dean

CNN
CNN

The mayor of Rouen, one of the cities in France now under a nighttime curfew, says the health sector is exhausted and needs more help. 

Nicolas Mayer-Rossignol told CNN that he knows the city must apply by the curfew rules, but he foresees economic damage. 

Asked if the central government is giving enough financial support to the French cities now under curfew, Mayer-Rossignol said, "You need the two legs: you can have restrictions but if you have strong restrictions you must have strong incentives and strong help."

About 20 million people – roughly a third of France's population – in the capital Paris and regions of Aix-en-Provence, Marseille, Grenoble, Montpellier, Toulouse, Saint Etienne, Lille, Lyon and Rouen are affected by the 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew expected to last a month.

He said that although they do have financial help “there are some specific sectors where help is desperately needed, especially the health sector”.

“The big difference with the confinement a few months ago is that when it started in March - April the whole health sector was fully mobilized and strongly committed to do everything they could to battle – and currently they are just exhausted. So we need more help,” Mayer-Rossignol added.

12:42 p.m. ET, October 19, 2020

Covid-19 positivity rate in New York City is above 2%, mayor says

From CNN's Kristina Sgeuglia

NYC Media
NYC Media

The percent of people who tested positive for Covid-19 citywide is at 2.17%, under the 5% threshold, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said. 

The seven-day rolling average is 1.62%, he said. 

De Blasio maintained there is still a “leveling off in some of the areas of greatest concern,” adding that the city and state are in constant contact in terms of how to move forward with restrictions that are nearing their 14-day mark. 

“We got more work to do, we want to keep making that progress,” the mayor said.

He encouraged everyone in the restrictive zones to continue to “dig deeper.”

De Blasio said the city and state are in constant contact “to figure out the exact timing of each move we’ll make” with regards to the restrictions and the potential of lifting them.

“We do overall need to see more progress before we can remove restrictions,” he said.

The area of Central Queens Red Zone have seen substantial progress in terms of their numbers. 

“The goal is to stop a second wave of the coronavirus in NYC, we can stop a second wave, right now the numbers suggest we are stopping a second wave but we have to remain vigilant and this next week or two will be crucial to make sure we consolidate our progress and maintain the progress we had previously," the mayor said.

Here are some more Covid-19 statistics from NYC:

  • The daily number of people admitted to hospitals for Covid-19 is at 76, under the 200 threshold. The confirmed positivity rate for Covid-19 for those patients is 16.4%.
  • With regard to new reported cases on a seven-day average, with a threshold of 550 cases, NYC reports 471. 

One thing to note: These numbers were released by the citys 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.

10:34 a.m. ET, October 19, 2020

Slovenia declares 30-day state of emergency over Covid-19

From CNN’s Vasco Cotovio in London

Slovenia has declared a 30-day state of emergency on Monday to try and curb the spread of Covid-19 in the country. 

According to a spokesperson for Slovenia's government, the move comes with additional restrictions on movement between regions, as well as a reduction on the number of people who are allowed to gather at a time.

As of this Monday, a curfew will also be in place, with all movement of people being forbidden between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. 

Larger scale events and gatherings such as weddings and religious ceremonies will be temporarily suspended, the spokesperson added.