November 9 coronavirus news

By Emma Reynolds, Zamira Rahim, Jenni Marsh, Joshua Berlinger and Stephanie Halasz, CNN

Updated 1:41 a.m. ET, November 10, 2020
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3:54 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

New Jersey Governor announces highest number of hospitalizations since June

From CNN’s Taylor Romine

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced 1,537 new hospitalizations across the state on Sunday -- the first time the state has exceeded 1,500 hospitalizations since June 9.

Murphy also announced new restrictions for bars, restaurants and indoor youth sports across the state.

The governor said 2,075 new Covid 19 cases and 11 additional deaths had been recorded on Monday; the state's positivity rate is 7.52%. Since the last news conference on Thursday, 9,524 new cases have been reported. Hospitalizations are up, but ventilator use is down overall, according to Murphy. 

New rules for bars and restaurants:

  • From November 12, all restaurants, bars, clubs and lounges must close their indoor dining areas by 10 p.m., but they can continue to offer outdoor dining and takeout.
  • Since bars have seen such a high rate of transmission, all bar-side seating will be prohibited for now.
  • To help restaurants with limited seating, the state will allow tables to be closer than 6 feet if there are physical barriers between them. 
  • Outdoor bubble seating will be allowed, as long as they are thoroughly cleaned between use, and only used by one group at a time.

All interstate games and tournaments for indoor youth sports will be prohibited starting Thursday, Murphy said. 

Murphy told reporters that the state was "taking surgical steps to help mitigate the increasing spread" of Covid seen across the state.

He urged New Jersey residents to "shake off" Covid fatigue, encouraging the state to crush the curve, as it did in the spring. 

3:53 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Canada invests in high speed internet due to changes in work and schooling during pandemic

From CNN’s Artemis Moshtaghian

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, arrives to a news conference in Ottawa, Canada, on Monday, November 9.
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, arrives to a news conference in Ottawa, Canada, on Monday, November 9. David Kawai/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced a $1.75 billion CAD universal broadband fund to connect all Canadians to high speed internet, in light of changes to work and schooling during the pandemic.

The fund will be used to build infrastructure across the country, almost entirely in rural and remote communities, Trudeau said at a news conference on Monday.  

Trudeau addressed the changed landscape of working and learning from home, pointing to the importance of high speed internet and the government's role in providing reliable internet connections to Canadian citizens.

Good reliable internet isn't a luxury, it's a basic service and it's a service that every single Canadian deserves," Trudeau said. 

The PM said that in the last five years, his government has invested to connect 1.2 million households to high speed internet. He said the previous government invested $700 million CAD in connecting people to the internet, and that his government has invested $6 billion CAD -- nearly 10 times as much -- over the past five years.

 

3:32 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Illinois exceeds 10,000 new Covid-19 cases for four days straight 

From CNN’s Brad Parks and Amanda Watts

Workers check in residents at a mobile COVID-19 testing site on June 23, in Chicago, Illinois.
Workers check in residents at a mobile COVID-19 testing site on June 23, in Chicago, Illinois. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Illinois has reported more than 10,000 new Covid-19 cases for four days straight, according to the state's health department. 

A statement from the Illinois Department of Health (IDPH) reported 10,573 new confirmed and probable coronavirus cases and 14 additional deaths. 

"As of last night, 4,409 people in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with Covid-19. Of those, 857 patients were in the ICU and 376 patients with Covid-19 were on ventilators," the IDPH statement said. 

IDPH said the "preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity" for the last week is 12.4%.

3:30 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Pfizer vaccine data submission and FDA review will take several weeks each, says HHS secretary Azar

From CNN Health’s Naomi Thomas

Alex Azar, Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), speaks during a news conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on October 21.
Alex Azar, Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), speaks during a news conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on October 21. Elijah Nouvelage/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Pfizer will need to submit data on its vaccine candidate to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and wait for a review -- two stages that will take several weeks each, US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told Fox News.

The drugmaker said on Monday that early data shows its vaccine is 90% effective, but Azar said Pfizer needed to pull together the details and provide them to the FDA for an independent review process before authorization.

So, you should be thinking in the several week time period, both for the submission and then review by FDA of the data,” Azar said Monday. 

Azar said that thanks to Operation Warp Speed, the government has guaranteed receipt of an FDA-authorized vaccine from Pfizer -- 100 million doses that were purchased for around $2 billion, Azar said. There is also an option for another 500 million. These will start in increments of about 20 million doses, which begin in late November and continue monthly, according to Azar. 

The timescale: In a news release on Monday, Pfizer said it plans to seek emergency use authorization from the FDA, soon after volunteers have been monitored for two months following their second dose of vaccine, as requested by the agency. Pfizer said it anticipated reaching that marker by the third week of November. 

3:11 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Eight states have not yet begun distributing quick Covid-19 tests, says official

From CNN Health's Andrea Diaz

Assistant HHS Secretary for Health Brett Giroir testifies during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing in Washington, DC, on September 23.
Assistant HHS Secretary for Health Brett Giroir testifies during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing in Washington, DC, on September 23. Graeme Jennings/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Eight states have yet to distribute quick, cheap, on-the-spot coronavirus tests that were sent to them by the federal government to help speed coronavirus screening efforts, a top official said Monday.

The government has stopped shipping the Abbott BinaxNow tests to those states for now, Admiral Dr. Brett Giroir, US Department of Health and Human Services' assistant secretary for health, told reporters during a briefing.

"Even though many of these states have excellent plans on how to use them, we are pausing shipments to these states until they have started to distribute their tests, because given where we are in the outbreak, we cannot let tests sit unused," Giroir said.

He said the states are: Hawaii, Massachusetts, North Dakota, Nevada, Virginia, Vermont, West Virginia, and New Mexico. 

CNN is reaching out to these states for comment.

Giroir said that by the end of the week, the federal government will have shipped more than 50.2 million of the BinaxNow tests. 

"That includes over 33 million to governors, over 11 million to nursing homes, over 3.2 million to assisted living, over 679,000 to home health and hospice, 450,000 to tribal nations, over 391,000 to HBCUs -- historically black colleges and universities -- and over 594,000 to disaster relief operations or surge surveillance testing sites," he said.  

Giroir said schools were opening "quite successfully" across the country, with minimal transmission of coronavirus, but that there was not much screening going on.

"We do know that school testing -- although it's important -- very few states or districts are actually screening students. There's limited screening of staff," Giroir said in a briefing with reporters. "So that priority is probably less than we thought before, but again we have to assess." 
3:06 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Nearly 10% of Covid-19 hospital patients have to be readmitted, report finds

From CNN Health’s Jen Christensen

Medical staff members work inside of the COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas, on Sunday, November 8.
Medical staff members work inside of the COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas, on Sunday, November 8. Go Nakamura/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Nearly 10% of patients treated in hospital for Covid-19 had to be readmitted within two months of being discharged, according to a new report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Readmissions were more common among patients sent to a skilled nursing facility or those who needed home care after they were hospitalized, compared to patients who were sent home to care for themselves, the report -- published Monday in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report -- found. 

Almost 2% of Covid-19 patients had multiple readmissions to the hospital.

Readmission was most common among people who were 65 or older, had underlying health conditions, or had been hospitalized three months before getting sick with Covid-19. 

White people were more likely than any other demographic to be readmitted to hospital.

The CDC noted these trends by examining 126,137 electronic health records between March and July. Of those patients:

  • 15% died during their first trip to hospital
  • 15% were admitted to the intensive care unit
  • 13% needed a ventilator
  • 4% need noninvasive ventilation

Researchers also found trends consistent with earlier studies of hospitalized Covid-19 patients.

More than 60% of patients who were hospitalized had one of five chronic conditions:

  • Nearly 30% were obese or had diabetes
  • More than 20% had chronic kidney disease or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • 16% had heart failure
3:04 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

UK PM: Anti-vaccine argument "holds no water"

From CNN's Schams Elwazer

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a virtual press conference on the coronavirus pandemic at 10 Downing Street on November 9.
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a virtual press conference on the coronavirus pandemic at 10 Downing Street on November 9. Tolga Akmen/WPA pool/Getty Images

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Monday that he thinks the anti-vaccination argument "holds no water."

"I think people need to remember that, in having a vaccination, you’re not just protecting yourself – you’re protecting anybody who could get infected by you or your family as a vector of the disease, so I hope very much that people won’t be listening to those types of arguments,” he added.

It came after Johnson confirmed that the UK had 40 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine and was "ready to start using it" once it was approved. The drugmaker said Monday that early data showed its vaccine was more than 90% effective -- a much better than expected level of efficacy, if the trend continues.

Johnson also announced that more than half a million rapid Covid-19 tests would be rolled out across England this week, in the next phase of his government’s plan to expand asymptomatic testing.

The 600,000 lateral flow tests sent by the National Health Service (NHS) Test and Trace to local public health leaders this week will enable increased testing of priority and high-risk groups in local communities, according to a UK government press release.

They will be followed by weekly local allocations.

'Last week we rolled out mass testing in Liverpool using new, rapid technology so we can detect this virus quicker than ever before, even in people who don’t have symptoms," said health secretary Matt Hancock. "Mass testing is a vital tool to help us control this virus and get life more normal."
2:55 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Netherlands' daily Covid-19 cases drop below 5,000 for the first time in a month

From CNN's James Frater in London

A health worker conducts a swab test on a bus converted into a mobile Covid-19 (coronavirus) test lab, in Hillegom, the Netherlands, on November 9.
A health worker conducts a swab test on a bus converted into a mobile Covid-19 (coronavirus) test lab, in Hillegom, the Netherlands, on November 9. Lex van Lieshout/ANP/Getty Images

The number of new daily coronavirus infections in the Netherlands has dropped below 5,000 cases for the first time in a month.

The latest data from the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) shows that 4,709 new cases were reported -- the lowest since October 6, when 4,541 new infections were recorded.

Cases peaked in the Netherlands on October 30 with 11,094 cases recorded in one day. Since then, the number of new cases has fallen consistently, halving in the last ten days. 

This takes the country's total number of coronavirus cases to 414,745.

It can take Dutch authorities up to seven days to finalize figures for new cases and deaths, to allow for delays in receiving data from regional centers.

2:47 p.m. ET, November 9, 2020

Pennsylvania positivity rate stands at nearly 7% -- with more than 10,000 cases recorded in three days

From CNN’s Ganesh Setty

Registered Nurse Treva Rivers administers a COVID-19 test at a free testing site in Reading, Pennslyvania, on October 13.
Registered Nurse Treva Rivers administers a COVID-19 test at a free testing site in Reading, Pennslyvania, on October 13. Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle/Getty Images

Pennsylvania has reported more than 10,000 cases in three days, with a record-setting daily increase of 4,035 cases on Saturday, and another 6,311 since.

The statewide positivity rate stands at nearly 7%, a 1% increase from last week, according to Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine. 

This "concerning trend" shows that the rise in cases is not just due to increased testing, Levine noted.  

"We are now seeing the highest case counts of the Covid-19 pandemic across Pennsylvania that we have seen since the beginning. This is a sobering look at our current reality, as Covid-19 continues to impact our state and our country," she added.

The state's Department of Health reported nine new virus-related deaths across Saturday and Sunday, bringing the total to 9,024 fatalities. 

There are 1,735 Pennsylvania residents currently hospitalized, Levine continued. That's up from 1,267 hospitalizations reported last week, she said. 

This is a call to action for everyone in Pennsylvania. Covid-19 is right here, and we are at a critical point," Levine said.