June 7 coronavirus news

By Melissa Macaya, Melissa Mahtani, Mike Hayes, Meg Wagner and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 8:01 PM ET, Mon June 7, 2021
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6:26 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

CDC study finds vaccinated people have milder disease in rare breakthrough infections

From CNN’s Maggie Fox

Signage is seen near a NYC mobile vaccination clinic bus near Brighton beach on May 29, in New York City.
Signage is seen near a NYC mobile vaccination clinic bus near Brighton beach on May 29, in New York City. Jeenah Moon/Getty Images

People who have been vaccinated against coronavirus are more than 90% protected against infection and, if they do become infected, they have milder disease than unvaccinated people, a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study shows.

The ongoing, real-life study also shows even partially vaccinated people are 81% less likely to become infected than unvaccinated people, the CDC team reported.

The study of more than 3,900 health care staff, first responders and other frontline essential workers who have been tested weekly since December showed that so far 5% have tested positive for coronavirus. Only 16 of the 204 people who became infected had been vaccinated.

The findings are reported in an online preprint on the medrxiv site and have not been peer-reviewed or published in a medical journal.

“This adds to the growing body of real-world evidence of their effectiveness,” the CDC said in a statement.

“Findings from the extended timeframe of this study add to accumulating evidence that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are effective and should prevent most infections — but that fully vaccinated people who still get COVID-19 are likely to have milder, shorter illness and appear to be less likely to spread the virus to others. These benefits are another important reason to get vaccinated," CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky added in the statement. 

The workers got either Pfizer/BioNTech’s or Moderna’s two-dose coronavirus vaccine and have been testing themselves weekly since December, regardless of whether they have symptoms. That’s the only way to tell if the vaccines prevent asymptomatic infections.

Those who got “breakthrough” infections after one or two doses of vaccine had 40% less virus in their bodies and were 58% less likely to have fever. They spent two fewer days in bed than unvaccinated Covid-19 patients.

5:26 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

Ohio governor urges providers to distribute J&J vaccine before 200,000 doses expire

From CNN’s Artemis Moshtaghian

 Stephen Zenner/SOPA Images/Sipa USA/AP/FILE
 Stephen Zenner/SOPA Images/Sipa USA/AP/FILE

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine urged vaccine providers to distribute as many doses of approximately 200,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine set to expire on June 23 to eligible Ohioans, as quickly as possible, according to a statement released by his office on Monday. 

“For Ohioans who have been waiting to get their vaccine, I urge you to take action now. There are many opportunities throughout the state to get a vaccine,” DeWine said. “The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is one of those options.” 

According to current Ohio law, the state does not have legal options for sending the vaccine doses either to other states or other countries. 

The Ohio Department of Health has put in place a first-in, first-out process for vaccine providers to ensure that vaccine doses set to expire soonest are being used first, the statement reads.

More than 4.7 million Ohioans are fully vaccinated and over 5.3 million Ohioans have started the Covid-19 vaccination process, according to the health department.

4:41 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

13 states have met Biden’s goal to vaccinate 70% of adults, according to CDC data

From CNN;s Deidre McPhillips

Julius Irvin, a student athlete on the football team, receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic on the University of Washington campus on May 18, in Seattle, Washington.
Julius Irvin, a student athlete on the football team, receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic on the University of Washington campus on May 18, in Seattle, Washington. David Ryder/Getty Images

Thirteen states have reached the Biden administration’s goal to vaccinate 70% of adults with at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine by July 4, according to data published Monday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

Washington is the latest state to reach this threshold, joining California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont.

Overall, more than 171 million people – 51.6% of the total US population – have received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccine, and nearly 140 million people – 42.1% of the population – are fully vaccinated, CDC data shows. 

Among the eligible population of those 12 and older, nearly half are fully vaccinated. 

Nearly 303 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine have been reported administered, about 82% of the 371.5 million doses delivered. That’s more than 1.2 million more doses reported administered since Sunday, for a seven-day average of about 1 million doses per day. 

Data published by the CDC may be delayed, and doses may not have been administered on the day reported. 

4:31 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

New York elects to keep indoor mask mandate in schools at CDC guidance

From CNN's Lauren del Valle 

Office of the Governor of New York
Office of the Governor of New York

New York state will not move ahead with lifting the mask mandate inside schools, something the state said it planned to do in a Department of Health letter sent Friday to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

When asked about his plan to lift the inside-school mask policy during a news conference Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said, "The CDC thinks that is not advisable, that was posed in the question. We asked them what do you think in the case of New York."

"We talked to them about the in-school mask and the outside-school mask rule. They were comfortable with the outside mask requirement. They were not comfortable with the inside mask requirement," he said.

The Friday announcement was met with criticism from both state and local agencies including the state teacher’s union and New York City public schools.

New York State Unified Teachers Union President Andy Pallotta called Commissioner Zucker's guidance in the letter “whiplash-inducing news” in a statement Friday.

“Short of any additional guidance from the state or the CDC before Monday, we implore school districts to closely evaluate local conditions and connect with their educators and parents to decide the best course of action for protecting their school community," Pallotta said. 

New York City Department of Education also said Friday it would continue its universal mask policy in city public schools until the end of the school year regardless of the state's new relaxed policy. 

Cuomo lifted the mandate requiring students to wear masks outdoors on school grounds effective immediately, he announced Monday.

Local school districts may now make individualized restrictions accordingly, Cuomo said, but still must require masks indoors per CDC guidelines. 

Cuomo said Monday his goal was to align school and summer camp mask-wearing guidelines but said CDC officials advised against the removal of indoor mask requirements.  

"We said on Friday we were asking the CDC for guidance and we would tell the schools on Monday what the guidance was, which I just did. We never said on Monday anything goes into effect. I said on Monday, I will tell you after we talked to the CDC, and we talked to the CDC, and they agreed with our decision to lift the mask mandate outside," Cuomo said. 

3:57 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

South Carolina governor lifts Covid-19 state of emergency

From CNN’s Jamiel Lynch


South Carolina is lifting an emergency order placed on the state due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Gov. Henry McMaster announced in a news conference.

McMaster touted what he called the “timid” approach the state took to closures and restrictions as why the state is now ready to move past the state of emergency.

“It is no longer necessary to have a state of emergency, although it is still necessary for us to be smart, to follow the rules, to follow the guidelines and be very careful,” McMaster said.

The first executive order was signed in March 2020 and extended several times. This latest action will end any other government restrictions, though McMaster already terminated most of them.

South Carolina never had a statewide mask mandate. Instead the governor allowed local governments to pass their own ordinances and also required masks in all state buildings. He ended that in May.

“[Covid-19] still exists. We still need to be careful,” McMaster said. “We know it is a dangerous virus, if you get it, depending on your conditions and other circumstance you’ll liable to have some very serious consequences. But, our posture at this point is very good.”

Since the start of the pandemic, the state has reported at least 594,225 cases and at least 9,754 deaths, according to the state dashboard.

According to the state dashboard, 45% of residents in the state have received at least one vaccine dose, and 38% have received both doses.

1:25 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

New York governor close to lifting "virtually all" pandemic-related restrictions

From CNN's Lauren del Valle 

People visit Little Island Park on May 27, in New York City.
People visit Little Island Park on May 27, in New York City. Noam Galai/Getty Images

Gov. Andrew Cuomo plans to lift "virtually all" pandemic-related restrictions when 70% of adult New Yorkers have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, he told reporters Monday. 

New York is 1.4% away from hitting that goal, he said. 

"We're at 68.6, almost there, but this isn't horseshoes. We want to be at 70% — 1.4% to go. And then we can lift the capacity restrictions, social distancing, the hygiene protocols, the health screenings, the potential tracing," the governor said. 

"Masks will only be required as recommended by the CDC. There will still be some institutional guidelines, large venues, schools, public transportation, hospitals, nursing homes, but we hit 70%, we will be back to life as normal or as normal as you can be post Covid," he added.

When asked about vaccination enforcement at stadiums, state budget director Robert Mujica said large venues like stadiums should be verifying vaccine status and enforcing masks and social distancing in unvaccinated sections.

Some background: There were at least 799 Covid-19 hospitalizations statewide Sunday and at least nine Covid-19 fatalities were recorded.

The Covid-19 positivity rate in every region across the state is below 1%, Cuomo said. 

New York state schools will no longer be mandated to require that students wear masks outdoors on school grounds. Local school districts may now make individualized restrictions accordingly, Cuomo said, but still must require masks indoors per US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. 

Cuomo's administration discussed the move with CDC officials with the goal of aligning school and summer camp guidelines, he added.

12:16 p.m. ET, June 7, 2021

UK will offer 25- to 29-year-olds Covid-19 vaccines starting Tuesday

From CNN’s James Briggs in London

A health worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination center in London, on June 5.
A health worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination center in London, on June 5. Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images

Starting tomorrow 25- to 29-year-olds will receive text messages asking them to book their Covid-19 vaccines, UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock said Monday.

Speaking in the House of Commons, the health secretary said, "I'm sure we've all been cheered by the images we've seen of so many eligible young people coming forward and lining up to get the jab, showing that enthusiasm for the jab is not just the preserve of older generations.”

The latest step in the UK’s vaccination rollout comes at an important milestone, as Hancock said Tuesday marks six months since the world started vaccinating people against coronavirus.

Hancock finished by saying, "I am confident one day soon, freedom will return.”

11:21 a.m. ET, June 7, 2021

Secretary of state: US will distribute 80 million Covid-19 vaccine doses to other countries by end of July

From CNN's Nicole Gaouette and Michael Conte

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the US will start distributing 80 million Covid-19 vaccines internationally between now and the end of July.

“We have 80 million vaccines that will be distributed, either working through COVAX, and with COVAX, or directly by the United States… between now and early July, so this is happening, starting to happen as we speak,” Blinken told the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Monday during a hearing on the State Department’s budget and priorities. “We want to make sure that anything we send out is safe and effective but it's, it's starting now, and it's going to roll out over the coming days and weeks between now and the end of July.” 

The State Department’s Coordinator for Global Covid Response and Health Security Gayle E. Smith told reporters Friday that an initial tranche of 25 million vaccines will be sent first. President Joe Biden pledged to share a total 80 million doses internationally.

On Monday, Blinken said that “about 75% of that first 25 million will be done in coordination with COVAX, the other 25% we’ll be able to do directly, making sure that we're taking the account of the science and the needs, where there are surges, where there are variants, where some countries need second shots, and have a deficit. All of this based on science, based on equity, and without political favor are being demanded in return, unlike some other countries.”

The remaining 75% of the first tranche of US vaccines will go to COVAX, the international group focused on the global vaccine distribution, Smith said Friday, and added that the Biden administration has “identified the countries we want these vaccines to go to.” 

Where the vaccines are headed: Roughly 6 million doses will be distributed across Latin America, including the Caribbean, 7 million will go to South and Southeast Asia, and 5 million to Africa, Smith said. “This is the first round, this is just the beginning,” said Smith. She was not able to say when the 55 million doses that make up the total 80 million vaccines would be delivered 

Going forward, the Biden administration will pursue a three-part strategy to maximize vaccine supply by sharing doses, encouraging US manufacturers to increase vaccine production “by the last quarter, if not earlier, of this year, and well into next year,” Smith said. The administration will also work to improve global vaccine production by increasing production capacity “so there are more places in the world, manufacturing, and able to distribute vaccines,” Smith said.

“Our goal is to end the pandemic and maximize that as quickly as we can,” Smith said. “It's in our interest to do this, our own health security is at risk… none of us is safe until all of us are safe.”

10:29 a.m. ET, June 7, 2021

US air travel records biggest day in more than a year

From CNN's Pete Muntean

Air travel just recorded its biggest day since March 7, 2020.

The Transportation Security Administration screened 1.98 million people Sunday, bigger than any day over Memorial Day weekend, which topped out on Friday, May 28, at 1.96 million people.

It continues the upward air travel trend during the Covid-19 pandemic — though far fewer people are flying than before the pandemic. On June 7, 2019, TSA screened 2.67 million people.