December 1 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Adam Renton, Emma Reynolds and Ed Upright, CNN

Updated 12:01 a.m. ET, December 2, 2020
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5:54 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

Texas reports more than 15,000 new Covid-19 cases   

From CNN's Raja Razek

Volunteer Daisy Valdivia, left, of Forth Worth, Texas, takes down information from a person waiting in line to receive food items during a Tarrant Area Food Bank mobile pantry distribution event in Arlington, Texas, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Thanksgiving holiday food items were distributed to over 5,000 families during the event that took place in a parking lot outside AT&T Stadium. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
Volunteer Daisy Valdivia, left, of Forth Worth, Texas, takes down information from a person waiting in line to receive food items during a Tarrant Area Food Bank mobile pantry distribution event in Arlington, Texas, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Thanksgiving holiday food items were distributed to over 5,000 families during the event that took place in a parking lot outside AT&T Stadium. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

Texas reported Tuesday a record 15,182 new Covid-19 cases, bringing the total number of cases to 1,184,250, according to the state's coronavirus dashboard. 

The state also reported 170 new Covid-19-related deaths, bringing the total number of deaths to 21,549.

There are currently 9,047 Covid-19 patients in Texas hospitals. 

Note: These numbers were released by the Texas Department of Health Services and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN's database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.

5:38 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

CDC advisers vote to recommend that health care staff and long-term care facility residents get vaccine first

From CNN's Maggie Fox

Vaccine advisers to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention voted 13-1 on Tuesday to recommend that both health care workers and residents of long-term care facilities be first in line for any coronavirus vaccines that get emergency authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration.

The Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices voted to include both groups in what they’re calling Phase 1a of the CDC’s coronavirus vaccine distribution plan. 

“Long-term care facility residents are defined as adults who reside in facilities that provide a variety of services, including medical and personal care, to persons who are unable to live independently,” the CDC said.

“Health care personnel are defined as paid and unpaid persons serving in health care settings who have the potential for direct or indirect exposure or infectious materials."

The CDC says long-term care facility residents account for 6% of coronavirus cases and 40% of coronavirus deaths in the US. More than 240,000 health care workers have been infected with coronavirus and 858 have died, the CDC says.

The single vote against the recommendation came from Dr. Helen Talbot of Vanderbilt University, who said she was worried that the vaccine had not been studied in residents of long-term care facilities. 

“We hope it works and we hope it’s safe. That concerns me on many levels,” Talbot told the meeting. 

But Dr. Jose Romero, who chairs ACIP, said he believed these residents are at exceptional risk.

“I believe my vote represents maximum benefit, minimum harm, promoting justice and mitigating … health inequalities,” Romero said after the vote.
5:28 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

CDC committee starts voting on who gets coronavirus vaccines first

From CNN's Maggie Fox

The US Center for Disease Control And Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices is about to begin voting on recommendations about who should get a coronavirus vaccine first.

4:47 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

Connecticut's Covid-19 positivity rate jumped to more than 5%

From CNN's Laura Ly

A technician gives a Covid-19 test at a drive through testing facility in Greenwich, Connecticut, on November 13.
A technician gives a Covid-19 test at a drive through testing facility in Greenwich, Connecticut, on November 13. Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Just one day after Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont expressed cautious hope that the state’s Covid-19 positivity rate might be declining, new data released by the state instead showed that Connecticut’s daily positivity rate jumped to 5.88% on Tuesday. 

The state previously reported a positivity rate of 4.4% on Monday and had averaged a rate of 4.7% over the previous week, state data shows.

Rising cases in the state brought Connecticut’s overall case count to 118,754, with 1,459 new cases reported on Tuesday. With an additional 20 deaths announced Tuesday, the state has now lost 5,040 residents to Covid-19. 

Hospitalizations also continue to rise in Connecticut, with an additional 54 people admitted on Tuesday, with 1,152 people hospitalized overall, new data from the state shows.

Note: These numbers were released by the state of Connecticut and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project. 

4:43 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

Stock market closes higher on investor optimism over stimulus and vaccines

From CNN's Anneken Tappe

People walk past the New York Stock exchange at Wall Street on November 30 in New York City.
People walk past the New York Stock exchange at Wall Street on November 30 in New York City. Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

December started out strong with a stock market rally. 

Wall Street finished higher on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite both logging fresh all-time highs, surpassing their records from last week. 

Investors are optimistic that there will be additional government stimulus before the end of the year, and are hopeful that the near-term distribution of a vaccine will help the economic recovery.

Here's how things closed on Tuesday:

  • The Dow closed 0.6%, or 185 points, higher.
  • The S&P climbed 1.1%.
  • The Nasdaq finished 1.3% higher.
6:51 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

Oklahoma nears 200,000 total Covid-19 cases 

From CNN's Kay Jones

Oklahoma is nearing 200,000 total Covid-19 cases, according to state data.

The state is reporting at least 199,492 cases of Covid-19, up 1,737 from Monday's report. There are also 15 new deaths being reported today, bringing the total to 1,758.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health shows that at least 1,718 patients are currently hospitalized with the virus. The dashboard shows that the state currently has 57 ICU beds available. 

Note: These numbers were released by the state'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.

4:17 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

Michigan's Covid-19 positivity rate is now 13% across the state

From CNN’s Lauren del Valle

Registered nurse Erica Fairfield, right, works at the Hackley Community Care COVID-19 curbside testing site in Muskegon Heights, Michigan, on November 13.
Registered nurse Erica Fairfield, right, works at the Hackley Community Care COVID-19 curbside testing site in Muskegon Heights, Michigan, on November 13. Cory Morse/The Grand Rapids Press/AP

Michigan recorded 10,428 new Covid-19 cases and 98 new deaths Sunday and Monday, according to the state Covid-19 dashboard. 

The average number of new confirmed cases was 5,214 per day, according to the dashboard.

The positivity rate is now 13% across the state, down from 14% on November 16, Michigan Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun said at a press conference Tuesday. 

It is too soon, however, to determine whether the statewide "pause" will be extended next week, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said at the press conference. 

Whitmer said state officials are bracing for a holiday-related surge in cases, despite the first two weeks of the three-week limited shut down showing positive results.

"Too many people traveled for Thanksgiving. And we will see our numbers increase very likely because of it. And that will coincide with the next big holiday Christmas. Too many people are considering traveling and I'm reiterating Please don't. And about four weeks after that we will see the impact of that. So the next two months are going to be hard. Our case numbers, our hospitalizations and deaths are dangerously high already," Whitmer said.

Note: These numbers were released by the state’s health agency, and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and our Covid tracker.

4:04 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

FDA to look closely at how Covid-19 vaccines work for different population groups, commissioner says

From CNN's Lauren Mascarenhas

US Commissioner of Food and Drugs Dr. Stephen Hahn testifies during a US Senate Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing in Washington, DC, on September 23.
US Commissioner of Food and Drugs Dr. Stephen Hahn testifies during a US Senate Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing in Washington, DC, on September 23. Graeme Jennings/Pool/AFP/Getty Images

The US Food and Drug Administration will look closely at vaccine clinical trial data to understand how coronavirus vaccines will work for various subsets of the population, FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn said Tuesday.

“It’s not as easy as saying the top line results are X percent effective and X percent side effects,” said Hahn. “Let's look at these groups, let's look at side effects and let's look at efficacy in each of these groups.”

“When we go through the 44,000 patient data lines that are in these clinical trials, we have to ask those questions. We have to examine it and crunch the data, looking at subsets of patients,” he added. 

If a vaccine does not appear to work for a certain portion of the population, the FDA will say so, Hahn said. 

“If we don't have data to support the use of a vaccine, we're going to come out and say that,” Hahn said. “And then we're going to have to make some decisions about that in the emergency use authorization process.”

Hahn said the FDA will be looking at the data to understand how these vaccines work for pregnant women, children, those with existing health conditions and people from minority communities. 

“We did not require a pregnancy test for entry into the clinical trials, which means that you know when we look at the data there are likely going to be women of childbearing age who have gotten pregnant,” Hahn said. “Will that be enough data for us to have confidence in say, pregnant women should be vaccinated? I think that's something that we'll have to take a look at. I think it's unlikely, but we need to look at the data.”

3:57 p.m. ET, December 1, 2020

Canada's prime minister announces more than $77 billion in coronavirus stimulus

From CNN’s Paula Newton in Atlanta 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference at Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on December 1.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference at Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on December 1. Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press/AP

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau acknowledged Tuesday that a second wave of the virus was compromising Canada’s economic recovery and pledged more than $77 billion more in stimulus. 

"This will be a significant investment to get our economy back on track and it's an investment that will make sure no one gets left behind," he said during a news conference in Ottawa Tuesday. 

The program will prioritize young families and other impacted communities. Trudeau added that the historic stimulus will be equal to more than 3% of GDP.

Canada’s average weekly test positivity rate has soared to more than 7% on average in the last week of November according to the Public Health Agency of Canada. 

In an interview with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) Tuesday, Trudeau said that given the current spike in cases in Canada and worldwide, he would continue to ban most non-essential travel to Canada, including maintaining a partial border closure with the US. 

“Until the virus is significantly more under control everywhere around the world, we’re not going to be releasing the restrictions at the border,” Trudeau told the CBC. 

Note: These numbers were released by Canada'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.