(NEW YORK) — As a virus epidemic appeared to be subsiding in China, where it first emerged nearly three months ago, the outbreak has found a strong foothold in Italy and other countries.
With more than 9,000 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, Italy now has the highest national total behind China, which has reported over 80,000 confirmed infections. The Italian government has put the entire country on lockdown in an effort to contain the newly identified virus, known officially as COVID-19.
Tune into ABC News Live at noon ET every weekday for the latest news, context and analysis on the novel coronavirus, with the full ABC News team where we will try to answer your questions about the virus.
Today’s biggest developments:
U.S. death toll at 28
Trump ‘feels extremely good,’ doesn’t plan on getting tested
“Likely going to get worse before it gets better,” U.S. surgeon general says
National Guard to deliver food, clean schools to NYC suburb
Italy’s “Patient No. 1” out of ICU
Here’s the latest on the developing situation. All times eastern. Please refresh this page for updates.
4:50 p.m. Biden cancels Cleveland rally
Joe Biden’s campaign joined Bernie Sanders in also canceling his rally scheduled in Cleveland Tuesday night.
“In accordance with guidance from public officials and out of an abundance of caution, our rally in Cleveland, Ohio tonight is cancelled,” said Communications Director and Deputy Campaign Manager Kate Bedingfield. “We will continue to consult with public health officials and public health guidance and make announcements about future events.”
Six states hold primaries or caucuses on Tuesday, and Biden may still address the media despite canceling the rally.
4:40 p.m. Another death recorded in Washington state
A man in his 80s is the latest patient in Washington state to die after contracting COVID-19, according to state officials.
The patient was a resident of Ida Culver House, was hospitalized at University of Washington Medical Center and died on Monday.
Of the 29 people to die of the coronavirus in the U.S., 24 deaths have occurred in Washington state.
4:35 p.m. 70 cases in Massachusetts connected to one conference, governor says
At least 70 cases of coronavirus in the state of Massachusetts are connected to the same employee conference, according to state officials.
The conference for biotechnology company Biogen took place last month.
State data lists one confirmed case and 92 presumptive positive cases in the state.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker declared a state of emergency Tuesday.
4:20 p.m. Bernie Sanders cancels Cleveland rally
The Bernie Sanders campaign has canceled a rally scheduled in Cleveland for Tuesday night after receiving recommendations from officials.
“Out of concern for public health and safety, we are canceling tonight’s rally in Cleveland,” campaign communications director Mike Casca said in a statement. “We are heeding the public warnings from Ohio state officials, who have communicated concern about holding large, indoor events during the coronavirus outbreak. Sen. Sanders would like to express his regret to the thousands of Ohioans who had planned to attend the event tonight.”
All future events will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, according to Sanders campaign.
Primaries or caucuses are being held in Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota and Washington on Tuesday.
3:55 p.m. Waffle House employee confirmed to have virus
An employee of a Waffle House in Georgia has tested positive for the coronavirus.
The restaurant, located at 1849 Marietta Highway in Canton, has been temporarily closed, Waffle House said in a statement.
The employee has not worked since March 1 and has been released from the hospital under quarantine.
Other employees were instructed to self-quarantine at their homes. None have shown any signs of illnesses, according to Waffle House.
3:20 p.m. Barclays employee on New York trading floor tests positive
A Barclays trader has tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the banking company.
The employee works on the New York trading floor and has been self-quarantined since March 3, a spokesperson for Barclays said.
The premises has been “thoroughly cleaned,” and colleagues and clients who had had close contact with the employee have been identified, the company said.
2:35 p.m. ‘Hundreds of thousands’ more people should be tested, says infectious disease doctor
The capacity to test a vast number of people for coronavirus does not yet exist, Dr. Todd Ellerin, chief of infectious diseases at South Shore Health in Weymouth, Massachusetts, told ABC News.
According to Ellerin, hundreds of thousands more people should be tested, but state labs don’t have “the ability to process an unlimited number of tests.”
“And the number of patients with flu-like illness who are testing negative for flu and negative for the respiratory virus panel far exceeds what that capacity is,” Ellerin said.
This means those patients cannot be ruled out for coronavirus, but without a confirmation they’re left in limbo.
2:20 p.m. Trump ‘feels extremely good,’ doesn’t plan on getting tested
President Donald Trump said that while he “would” get tested for coronavirus, he doesn’t think it’s a “big deal” because he “feels extremely good” and hasn’t exhibited any symptoms.
“I feel very good, but I guess it’s not a big deal to get tested,” Trump told reporters outside Capitol Hill Tuesday afternoon. “It is something I would do, but again, I spoke to the White House doctor — terrific guy, talented guy. He said there is no reason to do it.”
Trump said that he believes the U.S. has “done a very good job on testing.”
“When people need a test, they can get a test,” he said. “When the professionals need to test more people they can get the tests.”
Nearly 5,000 Americans have been tested for the virus, according to an ABC News count
1:45 p.m. Italy’s death toll increases by 168 in one day
A total of 631 people in Italy have died from the coronavirus, 168 of whom succumbed to the illness in the last 24 hours, according to the country’s civil protection department.
More than 10,000 people have tested positive for the virus in Italy.
The death tolls in Iran and South Korea stand at 291 and 54, respectively.
1:25 p.m. Another nursing home death occurs in Washington state
A second nursing home in Washington has announced an outbreak of COVID-19, which has resulted in a death.
The Issaquah Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in King County confirmed that a resident who tested positive for the virus last week has died. Five residents and two employees who tested positive are currently being quarantined.
Washington State Gov. Jay Inslee has announced new measures to protect vulnerable residents from coronavirus after an overwhelming majority of deaths in the U.S. have occurred in the state.
Residents of nursing homes and long-term health care facilities will be limited to one visitor a day, and the visits will be required to take place in a designated room, Inslee said. In addition, visitors must be screened for the virus, as well as employees and volunteers at the beginning and end of every shift.
Of the 28 people who have died in the U.S. from the virus, 23 of those deaths occurred in Washington, the majority of whom were residents of the Life Care Center in King County.
12:50 p.m. Patient in his 60s dies in New Jersey
A 69-year-old man from Bergen County, New Jersey, has become the state’s first patient to die from the coronavirus.
The man fell ill last week and has a history of diabetes, hypertension and emphysema, Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli told reporters at a news conference Tuesday. He suffered cardiac arrest on Monday, was successfully revived, but suffered another heart attack Tuesday morning and died.
The man did not have any recent travel outside the country but would travel to and from New York City, Persichilli said.
12:45 p.m. National Guard to deliver food, clean schools in New Rochelle, New York
A 1-mile containment area has been set up in New Rochelle, New York, due to the cluster of coronavirus infections that have taken place in the city, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday.
The National Guard will deliver food and clean schools in the zone during the containment period, which will last two weeks, Cuomo said.
All schools in the area will close, and large gatherings have been canceled.
People can go in and out of the containment zone, and small businesses can remain open, Cuomo said.
Labs such as LabCorps and Quest Diagnostics are now ready to process samples for coronavirus tests, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert Redfield told lawmakers on Capitol Hill Tuesday.
Anyone can now go to any health care provider that uses LabCorps or Quest Diagnostics and request a coronavirus test, Redfield said. Public health labs have tested 4,856 people so far.
The CDC hopes to aggregate data from all the labs to start tracking how many Americans have been tested, Redfield said.
7:39 a.m. Disembarkation process on track for Grand Princess cruise ship in California
Most of the Californians on board the Grand Princess cruise ship, as well as most or all of the Canadian passengers, have disembarked in the port of Oakland, according to officials at the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services as well as a spokesperson for the cruise line, Princess Cruises.
The cruise ship, carrying around 3,500 people, docked in Oakland on Monday after spending several days idling off California’s coast while health officials tested dozens on board for the novel coronavirus. At least 21 people have tested positive, officials said.
The disembarkation process, which officials said could take multiple days, appeared to be on track Tuesday. All passengers could be offloaded by the end of Wednesday so long as there aren’t any hitches.
All those who are infected will be transported to hospitals. Passengers who aren’t sick will be taken to various designated sites in the country to complete a 14-day quarantine. Crew members who aren’t infected will complete their 14-day quarantine on board the ship, which will leave the port as soon as the disembarkation process is complete, officials said.
6:48 a.m. Italy’s ‘Patient no. 1’ out of ICU
The first person to test positive for the novel coronavirus in Italy has been moved out of intensive care, marking a small victory in the country’s fight against the viral outbreak.
The 38-year-old man, who has become known in Italy as Patient No. 1, began breathing on his own on Monday with only a small amount of oxygen assistance at a hospital in Pavia, a town in the virus-hit Lombardy region in northern Italy. He was subsequently transferred out of the ICU to a sub-ICU unit, Dr. Francesco Mojoli, head of intensive care, told Italian news agency ANSA.
Before his diagnosis, the man infected several people, including his wife, who is eight months pregnant. His wife has been discharged from the hospital, according to ANSA.
6:23 a.m. British Airways cancels all flights to and from Italy
British Airways announced it is canceling all flights to and from Italy scheduled for Tuesday.
The move comes after the Italian government issued a decree on Monday directing all 60 million residents to stay at home and not travel unless required by their work due to the viral outbreak. The nationwide restrictions, which took effect Tuesday and remain until April 3, include extending the closures of schools and universities as well as shuttering restaurants, cafes and pubs at dusk.
The U.K. government has advised citizens against all but essential travel to Italy.
“In light of the Italian government’s announcement and the U.K. government’s official travel advice, we have contacted all customers who are due to travel today,” British Airways told ABC News in a statement Tuesday. “We have updated our policy to give customers more options and flexibility. Any travelers due to fly to or from Italy between now and April 4 can rebook to a later date up until the end of May, move their destination to Geneva or Zurich or receive a full refund.”
5:46 a.m. Georgia prepares state park for coronavirus isolation
Georgia authorities are preparing a state park for isolating and monitoring people who may have been exposed to the novel coronavirus.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced Monday night that state officials have identified Hard Labor Creek State Park in Morgan County as a location for the isolation and monitoring of patients. Once established, authorities will provide security for the location.
“Officials have already delivered and installed seven emergency trailers at the park, and related materials are en route for future use,” Kemp said in a statement. “Officials are utilizing an isolated section of Hard Labor Creek State Park were emergency trailers and operations will be separated from the rest of the property.”
No patients are currently scheduled to be transferred to the site.
At least 755 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in 36 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, and 26 of them have died. Georgia has 17 confirmed infections so far, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering.
5:15 a.m. Italian cruise ship docks in Singapore after being turned away in Malaysia, Thailand
A luxury Italian cruise liner that was turned away from ports in Malaysia and Thailand due to coronavirus fears has docked in Singapore.
The Costa Fortuna berthed at the Marina Bay Cruise Center Singapore on Tuesday morning as part of a scheduled call, a spokesperson for the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore told ABC News.
Italian cruise line Costa Crociere, which operates the ship, has said there were no suspected cases of COVID-19 on board.
3:20 a.m. China’s president makes first visit to outbreak epicenter
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday visited Wuhan, the city at the center of the novel coronavirus outbreak.
Chinese state media reported that Xi arrived Tuesday morning to inspect the epidemic prevention and control efforts in Hubei province and its capital city, Wuhan, while also expressing regards to frontline workers, patients and residents.
It’s the first time the president has traveled to the outbreak’s epicenter since Wuhan was placed under lockdown on Jan. 23. The bulk of the 80,754 confirmed cases and 3,136 deaths reported on mainland China have been in Wuhan.
China hosts the majority of the world’s cases. But the epidemic there appears to be subsiding as China’s National Health Commission recorded just 19 new cases of confirmed infections on Monday, 17 of them in Wuhan.
Fourteen makeshift hospitals that were built in Wuhan to treat patients with mild symptoms of the virus have now wrapped up operations and closed down, after discharging their last patients, according to Chinese state media.
Meanwhile, the outbreak is expanding abroad, particularly in Italy and other European countries. Globally, more than 114,000 people have been infected with COVID-19 and more than 4,000 of them have died, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering. The newly identified virus has spread to every continent except Antartica.
“Now that the virus has a foothold in so many countries, the threat of a pandemic has become very real,” World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a press briefing Monday. “The great advantage we have is the decisions we all make as governments, businesses, communities, families and individuals can influence the trajectory of this epidemic.”
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