November 25 coronavirus news

By Ben Westcott, Adam Renton, Melissa Macaya, Mike Hayes and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 12:59 a.m. ET, November 27, 2020
18 Posts
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5:14 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

Hong Kong sees another rise in Covid-19 cases as new restrictions set to begin

From CNN’s Jadyn Sham in Hong Kong

Workers wearing Personal Protection Equipment(PPE) are seen attending to people waiting for a test at a Covid-19 testing center  in Hong Kong, on November 24.
Workers wearing Personal Protection Equipment(PPE) are seen attending to people waiting for a test at a Covid-19 testing center in Hong Kong, on November 24. Vernon Yuen/NurPhoto/Getty Images

Hong Kong reported 85 Covid-19 cases from Tuesday, another highest single-day increase in cases since August 7, health authorities said on Wednesday.

  • Among the new cases, 68 were locally transmitted, of which 63 were related to a recent dance studio cluster, while 16 cases were untraceable, according to Dr Chuang Shuk Kwan of the Centre for Health Protection (CHP).
  • To date, a total of 250 cases are related to the dance studio cluster.
  • The total number of Covid-19 cases in Hong Kong is at 5,867.  

Starting on Thursday, all bars, karaoke centers, public bathhouses, night clubs and party rooms will have to be closed for a week after the recent spike in cases, Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan said during a press conference on Tuesday.  

Earlier Wednesday, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam ruled out the possibility of a citywide lockdown as it will likely take at least four weeks to test 7 million people based on the last timeline when the city carried out the universal community testing scheme. During the city's last universal testing scheme, 1.3 million people were tested within two weeks. She added that

"as a financial hub, it's not possible for [Hong Kong] to not do businesses and for the public to stay home for that long."

Lam said in her policy address on Wednesday that a certain amount of vaccines developed or produced in China will be reserved for use by Hong Kong people when necessary.

Covid-19 cases in Asia are rising but compared to the West they are still much lower.

 

5:40 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

Europe is still the largest contributor to new Covid-19 cases and deaths, WHO says

From Sharon Braithwaite in Pisa, Italy

Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images
Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

As the global acceleration in Covid-19 cases slowed down over the past week -- with around four million new cases reported -- death rates continue to increase, with over 67,000 new deaths reported across the world, the World Health Organization reported on Tuesday.

Europe is still the largest contributor to those cases and deaths. Here's the breakdown of those numbers from the European Region over the past week:

  • Europe accounted for 44% of global new cases and 49% of global deaths (32,684 new deaths)
  • The number of new cases reported in Europe declined by 6% to 1.77 million, after a decline of 10% in the previous week
  • Italy reported the highest number (235,979) of new cases in Europe, and the third-highest globally -- but still saw a slight decline of 3%
  • The number of new deaths in Italy increased by 26% to 4578 new deaths
  • In the UK, there’s been a 13% decrease of new cases (149,027) from last week, while the number of new deaths remained similar
  • This decrease in new cases in the UK is the first weekly decline since late August

The WHO said on Tuesday that the data indicates “that the re-introduction of stricter public health and social measures in a number of countries over the last few weeks is beginning to slow down transmission.”

In Africa, while cases numbers remain relatively low, the continent reported the highest increase in new cases (15%) and deaths (30%) this week, according to the WHO's COVID-19 weekly report.

The highest new case and death counts were reported in South Africa, Algeria and Kenya. 

4:03 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

South Korea reports more than 380 new Covid-19 cases

From CNN’s Gawon Bae in Seoul

South Korea reported 382 new Covid-19 cases for Tuesday, 363 of which were locally transmitted.

Some 255 of the local cases were found in the Seoul metropolitan area. The South Korean capital declared an "emergency period" on Monday and raised its social distancing measures to Level 2 restrictions, including limiting gatherings to 100 people for weddings and funerals.

Mask wearing is mandated in all indoor facilities under Level 2 restrictions, with takeout only at cafes and for restaurants after 9 p.m.

Other areas of South Korea, including North Jeolla and South Jeolla provinces, and parts of Gangwon province, have moved into Level 1.5 measures.

Under Level 1.5 restrictions, restaurants are required to use dividers or distance tables, and entertainment venues are limited to one person per 4 square meters. 

South Korea has reported 31,735 Covid-19 cases in total, with 513 deaths, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency.

3:27 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

Tennis' Australian Open could be delayed next year -- but officials are confident it will go ahead

From Angus Watson in Sydney, Australia

Victoria's Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade, Martin Pakula speaks to the media during a news conference in Melbourne, Australia, on Sept. 14.
Victoria's Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade, Martin Pakula speaks to the media during a news conference in Melbourne, Australia, on Sept. 14. Daniel Pockett/Getty Images

The 2021 Australian Open tennis tournament scheduled to begin on January 18 will "likely" be postponed for up to two weeks, according to the Victoria state government on Wednesday.

“I'm still confident we'll have an Australian Open, and we'll have one in the early part of the year,” Victoria’s Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula told reporters in Melbourne.
“It'll be delayed by a week or two. I think that's still most likely. But it's not the only option,” he said.

The annual Australian Open, the first Grand Slam tennis event of the year, is traditionally held in the last two weeks of January at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, capital of Victoria state.

Tennis Australia says it has been in "urgent talks" with the state government regarding the quarantining and biosecurity arrangements needed for the tournament to go ahead.

Pakula on Wednesday flagged an “extremely rigorous testing regime, that will apply to the tennis players, both before they leave the port that they're coming from and when they arrive. And then I imagine consistently through the time they're in the bubble.”

While a second wave of Covid-19 forced Melbourne into a strict 112-day lockdown over the southern hemisphere winter, the majority of restrictions have now been eased. 

There has not been a new case of Covid-19 in Victoria since Oct. 29. 

3:03 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

Germany reports new daily high for coronavirus deaths 

From CNN's Fred Pletigen in Berlin 

Germany recorded 410 deaths related to coronavirus in the past 24 hours -- the highest one-day jump in fatalities since the outbreak began, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the country's disease and control agency, said on Wednesday. 

It was the first time more than 400 Covid-19 deaths were recorded in Germany in a single day, as the country grapples with a recent surge in new coronavirus cases. A total of 18,633 new infections were registered in the past 24 hours, according to RKI. 

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is set to meet state governors on Wednesday to decide on new measures to try and get the surge of infections under control.

Among the measures up for debate is an extension of the current lighter restrictions until the end of December, additional mask mandates for schools, and further limits on the amount of contacts people are allowed to have both in public and private.

2:44 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

Hong Kong leader warns city is on brink of new wave

From CNN's Kristie Lu Stout and Pauline Lockwood in Hong Kong

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam delivers her annual policy address at the Legislative Council in Hong Kong, on Nov. 25.
Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam delivers her annual policy address at the Legislative Council in Hong Kong, on Nov. 25. Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam has said that the city is on “is on the brink of another wave of outbreak,” during her policy address on Wednesday. 

The city has seen a steady rise in cases over the past few days with clusters originating from dance halls. Hong Kong has already experienced three waves of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Lam further announced that China’s central government “will reserve a certain amount of vaccines developed or produced in the mainland for use by Hong Kong people when necessary". 

2:05 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

Mexico reports highest daily jump in Covid-19 cases 

From CNN’s Tatiana Arias in Atlanta

Mexico recorded its highest daily increase of new coronavirus cases Tuesday, with 10,794 infections reported in the past 24 hours, the country's health ministry said.

The total number of Covid-19 cases in the country now stands at 1,060,152. 

The ministry also reported 813 new fatalities related to the virus, bringing the death toll to 102,739.  

Tuesday’s new infections surpassed a previous high reported on Aug. 1 of 9,556 cases.

Note: On Oct. 5, Mexico reported 28,115 new daily coronavirus cases, but according to the Mexican health authorities, the spike was due to an adjustment in the counting methodology that included lagged data reporting.

2:55 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

US reports more than 2,100 new Covid-19 deaths

From CNN’s Joe Sutton

The United States reported 2,146 deaths from Covid-19 on Tuesday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.  

This is the 21st time that the US has added more than 2,000 coronavirus fatalities in a day and the highest new death numbers since May. The most deaths in a single day were recorded April 15 -- 2,603 people.

The US also reported 172,935 new coronavirus infections Tuesday, according to JHU. The nationwide totals now stand at 12,591,163 confirmed cases and 259,925 deaths.

CNN is tracking US cases:

1:26 a.m. ET, November 25, 2020

You can use expired face masks, and other guidance from the FDA

From CNN's Maggie Fox

N-95 masks are to be used once and should not be washed, but some can be decontaminated and reused, the FDA said.
N-95 masks are to be used once and should not be washed, but some can be decontaminated and reused, the FDA said. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Some face masks can be used even if their manufacturer’s expiration date has passed, the US Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday.

The FDA posted extensive new guidance about face masks, surgical masks, and respirators on its website Tuesday, with advice about when to use each kind. 

Some are OK to use even if they are old, the FDA said. “Face masks and surgical masks are designed to serve as protective barriers and may still offer some protection even if they are used beyond the manufacturer's designated shelf life or expiration date,” the agency advised. 

Hospitals, clinics, and other health care facilities have reported shortages and problems managing protective personal equipment, including face masks. But certain types should not be re-used, the FDA said. 

“The CDC does not recommend the reuse of disposable surgical masks that are intended to be used once. The FDA recognizes that there may be availability concerns with surgical masks during the COVID-19 public health emergency, but there are strategies to conserve surgical masks," it said. 

Respirators, such as N-95 masks, are to be used once and should not be washed, but some can be decontaminated and reused. “The FDA has issued Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) for devices that decontaminate certain respirators,” it said.

Mask protection: While the FDA referred frequently to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, its new website doesn’t reference the CDC’s latest guidance that suggests face masks protect the wearers as well as those around them.

“Masks may help prevent people who have COVID-19 from spreading the virus to others,” the FDA said. “The CDC recommends people wear face masks in public settings, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. Wearing a face mask may limit exposure to respiratory droplets and large particles and may help prevent people who have COVID-19 from spreading the virus.”