(NEW YORK) — The death toll from the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to skyrocket as more than 9,000 people in the United States have died from COVID-19 as of Sunday afternoon, a day after the U.S. recorded its largest number of deaths in a 24-hour span.
There are now more than 325,000 diagnosed cases in the U.S. and more than 1.2 million around the world. The actual number is believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases, and suspicions that some governments are hiding the scope of their nations’ outbreaks.
Over 68,000 have died across the globe and more than 258,000 people have recovered, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.
Here’s how Sunday unfolded. All times Eastern:
8:13 p.m.: More masks, ventilators are on the way, says Trump
All 50 U.S. states and territories have now been approved for major disaster declarations, President Trump announced at the daily White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing.
Trump said that the government will deliver more N95 masks to the hard-hit New York City area tomorrow, and ventilators to hard-hit states including Michigan, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Illinois and New Jersey.
Louisiana will be receiving 200 ventilators, Michigan will get 300, Massachusetts will get 100, New Jersey will get 500, and 600 will be going to Illinois — amazingly, Trump said, because “there’s a governor — I hear him complaining all the time, Pritzker. He has not performed well.”
By Tuesday, Trump said the government will also have deployed more than 3,000 military and public health professionals to New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and other parts of our country. Additionally, 1,200 rapid point-of-care tests, which take 15 minutes to produce a result, will be sent out by Tuesday.
The president reported that 1.67 million Americans have now been tested for the virus.
Trump also said the government is purchasing and has started to stockpile hydroxychloroquine, a drug that is anecdotally reported to combat the coronavirus, though it has not been approved by the FDA for the treatment of COVID-19 and its effects on the virus are not yet scientifically proven.
“I want people to live and I’m seeing people dying,” Trump said when pressed on why he was promoting the use of the drug, a longtime treatment for malaria. “What really do we have to lose?”
6:50 p.m.: NYC cases near 65,000, deaths approach 2,500
New York City’s Health Department reported Sunday that the city has 64,955 confirmed coronavirus cases, an increase of 4,105 over the last 24 hours, as New York remains the epicenter of the pandemic in the U.S.
As of Sunday evening, the city had 2,472 COVID-19 related fatalities and 14,205 hospitalizations, the Health Department said. The majority of the cases, 21,781, were in Queens, while Manhattan had the fewest number, 9,251, according to the data.
6:21 p.m.: NYPD announces another coronavirus death
The New York Police Department said that one more of its members has passed away from the coronavirus.
Auxiliary Police Sergeant Angel Leon, who had been with the force for more than 38 years, died on Saturday, the department said. A total of 1,843 uniformed members and 274 civilian members have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the NYPD.
On Saturday, NYPD Detective Cedric Dixon, who also died of the coronavirus, was laid to rest by members of his family. Unlike standard police funerals, which are heavily attended by uniformed personnel, Dixon had only a few members of the force as pall bearers, according to the Detectives Endowment Association.
“Although our beloved Detective Cedric Dixon was laid to rest today solely by his loved ones … we’ll forever be here for Cedric’s family. Thousands will gather after we overcome this pandemic,” the union said in a tweet.
4:38 p.m.: Bronx Zoo tiger tests positive for virus
Administrators at New York City’s Bronx Zoo said one of its tigers tested positive for the coronavirus.
Nadia, a 4-year-old female Malayan tiger, was infected by a zoo employee who was caring for her and other tigers. She was “asymptomatically infected with the virus or before that person developed symptoms,” according to the Wildlife Conservation Society, which runs the zoo.
The tiger’s sister, Azul, two Amur tigers, and three African lions all developed a dry cough but were expected to recover, according to administrators.
“Though they have experienced some decrease in appetite, the cats at the Bronx Zoo are otherwise doing well under veterinary care and are bright, alert, and interactive with their keepers,” the WCS said in a statement.
The other tigers living in the zoo’s Tiger Mountain exhibit and the feline animals residing in other sections of the zoo haven’t shown any signs of symptoms, administrators said.
“Appropriate preventive measures are now in place for all staff who are caring for them, and the other cats in our four WCS zoos, to prevent further exposure of any other of our zoo cats,” the WCS said.
4:27 p.m.: Boris Johnson hospitalized as COVID-19 symptoms persist
U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson was hospitalized as his symptoms from the coronavirus persisted, a Downing Street spokesperson said.
“This is a precautionary step, as the prime minister continues to have persistent symptoms of coronavirus ten days after testing positive for the virus,” the spokesman said in a statement.
The office said that Johnson, 55, had a high fever and was admitted to the hospital on the advice of his doctor, not in an emergency. He will remain in contact with other British leaders while he awaits the results of his tests, the spokesman said.
4:06 p.m.: Boston institutes curfew
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh announced he will be enforcing a curfew for all residents who aren’t nonessential workers starting Monday morning.
The order, which will stay in effect until May 4, recommends that people stay inside between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. in order to prevent the spread of the virus and crowding.
“We have been seeing too many unnecessary trips in the evenings and social distancing problems as people order and wait for their take-out at restaurants,” Walsh said at a news conference.
Several municipalities have issued coronavirus-related curfews including Mobile, Alabama. Walsh said that anyone leaving their home should wear a mask or face-covering.
“If you don’t pay attention to these guidelines, we are not going to have a summer,” he said.
3:54 p.m.: NYC ventilator supply to last until Wednesday at the latest: Mayor
Mayor Bill de Blasio said New York City bought some more days with its ventilator supply.
Originally it was projected that the ventilators would be depleted by Sunday night, however the city has 135 ventilators in its stockpile, which would last until “Tuesday or Wednesday,” according to the mayor.
De Blasio pleaded with the federal government to send more ventilators and other resources to New York’s hospitals as soon as possible.
3:05 p.m.: Washington state to send ventilators back to national stockpile
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced he would return 400 ventilators back to the national stockpile to help other states that need them.
“These ventilators are going to New York and others states hardest hit by this virus,” Inslee said in a statement. “I’ve said many times over the last few weeks, we are in this together.”
The governor said the state recently purchased 750 ventilators, which will arrive in the next few weeks.
3:00 p.m.: Queen Elizabeth makes rare TV address to nation
For the fifth time in her reign, Queen Elizabeth delivered a televised message, reassuring Britons they will get through the pandemic.
In her four-and-a-half-minute taped address to the nation, the queen acknowledged the stress and difficulties that the country and the world has faced since the coronavirus pandemic began. However, she said that if they remained “united and resolute,” Britons will overcome the hardships.
“While we have faced challenges before, this one is different. This time we join with all nations across the globe in a common endeavor, using the great advances of science and our instinctive compassion to heal,” she said.
Outside of her annual Christmas address, Queen Elizabeth has talked to the nation four other times during her 68 years on the throne: the beginning of the Gulf War, Princess Diana’s death, the death of her mother and her Diamond Jubilee.
The speech included clips of British health workers, first responders and other essential workers who are keeping the country safe. The queen thanked those essential workers for their hard work and emphasized their efforts won’t be forgotten.
“I hope in the years to come everyone will be able to take pride in how they responded to this challenge. And those who come after us will say that the Britons of this generation were as strong as any,” she said.
1:32 p.m.: NJ to receive refrigerated trailers as temporary morgues: Report
New Jersey has ordered 20 refrigerator trailers that will act as temporary morgues, according to a report issued by the state, which was reviewed by ABC News.
The order is “to support a strategy to address the surge in bodies resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic,” according to the report.
The trailers will provide space for 1,600 bodies, the report said and five trailers will be delivered on Friday, the report said.
12:54 p.m.: NYC hospitals may reach total capacity by this week: FEMA report
A FEMA report reviewed by ABC News says New York City’s hospitals are expected to be at or near total capacity during the coming week.
As of Saturday afternoon, 30 of the hospitals in the city were at or near ICU bed capacity, according to the report. Officials caution the number has fluctuated from hour-to-hour as patients are admitted, discharged and transferred to other hospitals.
The temporary hospitals at Javits and USNS Comfort will have substantial beds available, the report said.
12:31 p.m.: UK death toll near 5,000
Health officials in the United Kingdom said 621 people died of coronavirus-related complications over the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths to 4,934.
Matt Hancock, the health minister, said the country’s National Health Service currently has 9,000 ventilators and its target is double that amount. He urged residents to obey social distancing precautions.
“Stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives,” he said
11:54 a.m.: Italian COVID-19 cases near 129,000
Italian health ministers released updated data on the country’s coronavirus cases, and while there are 128,948 confirmed contractions, they said the numbers show hopeful signs.
The new cases since yesterday were 4,316, which represented a 3.5% growth, the lowest percentage since the pandemic hit Italy. There were 525 new deaths reported in the country, bringing the overall death count to 15,887, according to health officials.
The daily death toll continues to decline each day, health officials said.
11:54 a.m.: Louisiana may run out of ventilators by Thursday: Governor
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards warned that his state could run out of working ventilators by Thursday and ICU beds by next weekend.
Edwards told CNN’s Jake Tapper that his recent projections are better than last week’s model that showed the ventilators would be used up by Tuesday, because the rate of COVID-19 contractions was declining as more people practice social distancing.
“We hope we can continue a downward trend on the rate of transmission of new cases. That buys us a little more time,” he said.
Edwards reiterated that if more people stay at home, the date for the ventilator shortage would continue to be pushed back, however he said the situation in the state is still serious.
11:30 a.m.: Cuomo says New York state could be ‘near apex’
While the number of deaths in the state of New York rose to 4,100 on Sunday morning, up 594 from the previous day, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the numbers suggest the state could be “near the apex” of the crisis.
The majority of the deaths have occurred in New York City, where the number of COVID-19 fatalities surpassed 2,600.
He said the number of daily deaths statewide was down from 630 on Friday.
Cuomo said the total number of hospitalizations in the past 24 hours was also down to 574 from a high just five days ago of 1,412. He said the downward trend was “partially a function of more people being discharged.” He said 75% of the people who have gone into the hospital system have recovered and have been discharged.
“We’re looking at this seriously now because by the data we could be very near the apex or the apex could be a plateau and we could be beyond that plateau right now,” Cuomo said at a news conference Sunday morning. “We won’t know until we see the next few days, does it go up or does go down, that’s what the statisticians will tell you today.”
But he said the state’s health care system is at “overcapacity across the board” and hospital’s risk running out of much-needed supplies in “two, three or four days.”
“That is putting a tremendous amount of stress on the health care system,” Cuomo said. “You’re asking a system to do more than it has ever done before, more than it was designed to do, with less.”
10:45 a.m.: Spain records lowest daily death toll in 8 days
While the death toll in Spain from the coronavirus rose by 674 in a 24-hour span to 12,418 on Sunday, health officials said it was the lowest daily count of virus-linked fatalities the country has seen in eight days.
Spain is second only to Italy in the number of COVID-19 deaths, but the lower number of people who have perished in a single day could suggest the country has reached it apex point. On Thursday, Spanish authorities reported 950 deaths, the highest number of deaths in a single day.
10 a.m.: Pope leads Palm Sunday service in near-empty St. Peter’s Basilica
With a choir practicing social distancing and his aides, a few nuns and prelates spaced out in cavernous St. Peter’s Basilica, Pope Francis led Palm Sunday service, telling young people specifically to “feel called yourselves to put your lives on the line.”
“The tragedy we are experiencing summons us to take seriously the things that are serious, and not to be caught up in those that matter less; to rediscover that life is of no use if not used to serve others. For life is measured by love,” the pontiff said in his homily to kick off the holy week of Easter.
Normally, Francis would have addressed his Palm Sunday remarks to the masses clutching olive branches and palm fronds gathered in St. Peter’s Square. But due to Italy’s stringent social distancing rules to blunt the virus that has ravaged the country, a more subdued service was held inside the basilica.
The pope specifically aimed his homily at young people.
“Dear friends, look at the real heroes who come to light in these days: they are not famous, rich and successful people; rather, they are those who are giving themselves in order to serve others,” Francis said. “Feel called yourselves to put your lives on the line. Do not be afraid to devote your life to God and to others; it pays!”
9 a.m.: First responders get fast-lane service at some grocery stores
In an effort to support those on the front lines in the battle against the pandemic, some grocery stores in New York are creating “express lanes” for first responders.
PSK Market, Foodtown and Pathmark stores have already established the special first-responder lanes and announced they will hand out $100,000 in gift cards to people who work in hospitals.
“After a 12-hour shift, we should get them through the aisles, and let them get what they need,” said Eric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president who is a former police officer, told ABC station WABC in New York City.
Adams said he hopes the first-responder supermarket “express lanes” will catch on across the state and nation.
“All first responders should simply be brought to the front of the line,” says Adams.
8:30 a.m.: Joe Biden offers again to speak with President Trump
Former Vice President Joe Biden, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nominee, said on Sunday that President Donald Trump has yet to take him up on his offer to have a phone conversation about the federal government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Well, it hasn’t happened. I’m happy to talk to him and I’d just tell him what we found is important to do … and that is to move swiftly and … we have to move more rapidly,” Biden told ABC News’ chief anchor George Stephanopoulos Sunday morning on “This Week.”
Biden currently leads Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders by more than 300 delegates in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination — a lead that is expected to grow as Wisconsin voters cast their ballots in the primary on Tuesday.
Tune into ABC at 1 p.m. ET and ABC News Live at 4 p.m. ET every weekday for special coverage of the novel coronavirus with the full ABC News team, including the latest news, context and analysis.
4:38 a.m.: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweets thanks to the British public for staying home
U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, tweeted his thanks to the British public for staying home and saving lives.
Johnson himself is still in isolation after testing positive for the novel coronavirus on March 26. Yesterday it was announced that his pregnant fiancee, 32-year-old Carrie Symonds, has been self-isolating after suffering from symptoms of coronavirus and has been in bed for the past week.
2:01 a.m.: City in New Jersey now requiring all employees of essential businesses to wear face covers
Ravinder Bhalla, the mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey, announced in a statement that all employees of essential businesses still operating in the city are now required to wear face covers or masks while working.
The directive, issued by the Hoboken Office of Emergency Management, came on the same day that New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced that New Jersey had suffered its worst day since the coronavirus outbreak began. The death toll in the Garden State has so far reached 846 with 34,124 positive cases reported.
“Today, the Hoboken Office of Emergency Management issued a directive requiring that all employees of essential businesses, including but not limited to supermarkets, pharmacies and all restaurants and food establishments, wear a face cover and gloves while at work and serving customers,” read the statement from Mayor Bhalla. “Face covers can include a bandana or scarf, or similar material. Face masks are also permitted, however, N95 masks and other PPE are urged to be left for medical professionals and first responders.”
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