November 14 coronavirus news

By Helen Regan, Brad Lendon and Amy Woodyatt, CNN

Updated 0027 GMT (0827 HKT) November 23, 2020
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11:55 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Austria to go into second national lockdown as Covid-19 cases grow 10 times as fast as expected

From CNN's Lindsay Isaac

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz wears a face mask prior to announcing a second national lockdown in Vienna, Austria, on November 14.
Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz wears a face mask prior to announcing a second national lockdown in Vienna, Austria, on November 14. Ronald Zak/AP

Austria will enter a second national lockdown on Tuesday for at least two and a half weeks, after its target infection rate of Covid-19 exploded to 10 times higher than expected.

Chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced the measures in a press conference in Vienna on Saturday, admitting the government is failing to trace new infections.

“The truth is that the authorities are now no longer able to trace 77% of new infections, which means that the authorities no longer know where these infections take place,” he said.

Under the new measures, all non-essential services will close, schools will close and classes will go online, and people are asked not to leave their homes unless for a specific reason.  The lockdown will be in place until December 6.

“In Austria we currently have an average infection rate of more than 7000 per day. In most federal states the numbers are even increasing exponentially, for example in Upper Austria,” Kurz said. 

11:54 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Congress must now do a Covid Relief Bill, Trump tweets

From CNN's Jason Hoffman

Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images
Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

President Donald Trump has once again tweeted that Congress should pass a Covid relief bill, saying it should be “big and focused,” which seems to combine the Democrat and Republican wants from an additional stimulus package.

“Congress must now do a Covid Relief Bill. Needs Democrats support. Make it big and focused. Get it done!” Trump tweeted Saturday morning on the way to his golf club in Virginia.

On Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell continued to reject the call from Democrats for a big coronavirus stimulus package, saying, "that's not a place I think we're willing to go" and reiterated his push for a bill that's "highly targeted at what the residual problems are."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer signaled during a news conference earlier on Thursday they're not willing to change their call for a large coronavirus package even as efforts to negotiate remain stalled.

Meanwhile, Trump -- who once called on Republicans to accept "a big, beautiful" stimulus in hopes it would boost his election prospects -- is now consumed by the fallout of his defeat.

The White House's lead stimulus negotiator, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, has taken a step back from the talks, and all eyes are on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who had been on the sidelines of the negotiations throughout the summer and fall.

11:32 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Greece closes primary schools and nurseries in new Covid-19 restrictions

From CNN’s Chris Liakos and Duarte Mendonca

A teacher explains to students how to use the face masks at a primary school in Athens, Greece, on September 14.
A teacher explains to students how to use the face masks at a primary school in Athens, Greece, on September 14. Thanassis Stavrakis/AP

Greece will close all primary schools and nurseries on Monday for two weeks, in light of an increase in Covid-19 cases, the Greek Minister of Education said Saturday.

Niki Kerameus said this is a precautionary measure aimed to reduce adult mobility more widely and take the pressure off hospitals. Distance learning was already in place in secondary schools and universities.

Greece imposed a nationwide lockdown last weekend and tightened the night-time curfew from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. local as of Friday.

Greece had 3,038 new cases in its latest data on Friday, marking the second-highest tally of daily cases since the start of the pandemic. 

11:00 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Northwest Syria reports record increase in coronavirus cases as ICU beds fill

From Eyad Kourdi in Gaziantep, Turkey

Syria’s northwestern province of Idlib reported a record increase of 525 new coronavirus cases on Friday, the Idlib Health Directorate said in a statement on Saturday.

Earlier this month, the health directorate said beds in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the region were filled to 83% capacity, and asked the World Health Organization to prevent a "catastrophe" by taking responsibility of "saving the lives of 3 million people in northwest Syria."

Syria has so far recorded a total of 23,829 coronavirus cases based on cumulative number from local medical authorities in the northeast, northwest, and regime-held areas of the country.

11:40 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Iran to impose stricter coronavirus restrictions from next Saturday

From CNN's Ramin Mostaghim in Tehran

People shop at the Tajrish Bazaar market in Tehran, Iran, on November 1.
People shop at the Tajrish Bazaar market in Tehran, Iran, on November 1. Atta Kenare/AFP via Getty Images

Iran will impose stricter Covid-19 restrictions in more than 100 towns and cities in the country from next Saturday for two weeks after seeing a recent surge of coronavirus infections, deputy health minister Alireza Raisi said on Saturday on state TV after a meeting led by President Hassan Rouhani.

The new measures -- classified as "red" -- include non-essential businesses and services to be shut, according to Raisi.

The mandatory wearing of masks in public will continue in the capital Tehran, he added.

The announcement comes as Iran on Saturday reported 11,203 new cases of coronavirus in the past day -- one of the highest daily increase in infections, the country’s health ministry spokesperson Sima Sadat Lari said on state TV.

The health ministry also reported 452 new coronavirus-related deaths, bringing the overall death count in the country to 41,034.

Of the 11,203 new cases reported, 2,509 have been hospitalized.

A total of 5,642 patients are currently in critical condition in ICU across the country, according to the health ministry.

10:39 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Georgia's Secretary of State tests negative for Covid-19

From CNN's Chuck Johnston

Brynn Anderson/AP
Brynn Anderson/AP

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger tested negative for Covid-19, according to a spokesman in his office.

“The Secretary of State’s test came back negative. His leadership lead will quarantine for ten day and be actively engaged with county management throughout the recount process, Raffensperger's spokesman, Walter Jones, said in a statement.

Raffensperger is in quarantine after his wife tested positive for Covid-19, a spokesperson in his office told CNN on Thursday.

9:30 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Two dozen people died of Covid-19 in a Kentucky veterans center as infections in the community surged

From CNN's Christina Maxouris


At least 24 veterans have died of Covid-19 and more than 80 have been infected since an outbreak last month at Kentucky's Thomson-Hood Veterans Center, the state's governor said Friday.

Of the total 86 infections in the Wilmore facility, 48 veterans have now recovered, five are in the hospital and nine are being treated within the center, Gov. Andy Beshear said during a news conference.

About 63 staff members also tested positive and 52 have since recovered. Eleven of those cases are still active, Beshear said.

Communities hard hit: Assisted living communities and nursing homes across the country have been ravaged by the virus since the pandemic's start. And as community infections began to soar again at the beginning of fall, the number of cases within those facilities' walls climbed as well.

report released earlier this month by the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living found that more than 40% of new Covid-19 cases in nursing homes were from Midwest states that had seen spikes in community spread.

And as numbers in nursing homes rise, experts fear that will lead to an increasing number of deaths, AHCA/NCAL said in a news release accompanying the report.

A countrywide resurgence, then an outbreak: The Kentucky veterans center was able to avoid an outbreak for months, screening employees and veterans daily since March and conducting immediate testing for anyone who was showing symptoms.

But amid a Covid-19 resurgence across American communities in October and an explosion of new cases in Kentucky, the virus seeped into the center and spread like wildfire.

"It started with three veterans and seven staff members, which quickly turned into a larger outbreak," the governor said earlier this week. The rate of positive tests now appears to be declining, he said.

In a statement posted on their Facebook page Monday, the center said, "We are still battling."

"Keep praying for our incredible, warrior staff and our precious veterans," it said. "We are heartbroken over our losses. Please wear your masks and make smart, safe choices as you go about your daily lives. What we do out in the community matters."

Read the full story.

9:21 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

Poland reports record coronavirus deaths

From CNN’s Duarte Mendonca and Artur Osinski

Poland reported a record high 548 coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday, the health ministry said on Twitter.

There have been 10,045 deaths in the country, the highest in eastern Europe, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

JHU also reported 25,571 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number to 691,118.


8:03 a.m. ET, November 14, 2020

It's 8 a.m. in New York. Here’s the latest on the pandemic

More than 53 million cases of Covid-19 have been recorded worldwide. On Friday, the US reported 184,514 Covid-19 cases in its worst day of the pandemic, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University. This is the highest number of cases reported in a single day in the country since the pandemic began, and continues a four-day streak of record-breaking totals.  

The US has surpassed 10.7 million cases and 244,000 deaths, according to JHU. 

Covid-19 hospitalizations set a new record across the US: The United States has more people hospitalized with Covid-19 than ever before, according to the Covid Tracking Project (CTP). There were 68,516 current hospitalizations reported on Friday across the entire US, according to CTP. The seven-day average for current hospitalizations is now 62,123, which is up 20.01% from last week. 

Coronavirus pandemic is “national security threat,” Biden Covid-19 board member says: The coronavirus pandemic is a national security threat and President Donald Trump is exacerbating it by refusing to cooperate with President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team, Dr. Celine Gounder, a Biden Transition Covid-19 Board member, said Friday.

Recovering Covid-19 patients struggle to return to normal after hospital discharge, study finds: Surviving Covid-19 is hard enough for those who get severely ill from the disease, but returning to normal is a struggle, too, according to research that found survivors were likely to face health and financial hardships even months later.

Russia reports more than 22,000 new cases of coronavirus for the first time: On Saturday, Russia reported 22,702 new Covid-19 cases, the highest number of infections it has reported in a single day since the start of the pandemic, according to data from the country’s coronavirus response center.

Poland reports record coronavirus deaths: Poland reported a record high 548 coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday, the health ministry said on Twitter.

There have been 10,045 deaths in the country according to Johns Hopkins University data -- the highest in eastern Europe, while JHU also reported 25,571 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number to 691,118.

South Korea's president asks public for cooperation amid Covid-19 surge: South Korea's President Moon Jae-in urged the public on Friday to cooperate in curbing the growing number of Covid-19 cases. South Korea, which was initially lauded has having kept the pandemic under control, diagnosed 166 local and 39 imported cases on Friday, bringing the total number of cases to 28,338.