March 11 coronavirus news

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8:03 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

US official says China's response to coronavirus cost the world "two months to respond"

From CNN's Vivian Salama and Mike Conte

Robert O’Brien, President Trump’s national security adviser,  speaking at the Heritage Foundation
Robert O’Brien, President Trump’s national security adviser, speaking at the Heritage Foundation CNN

Robert O’Brien, President Trump’s national security adviser, blasted the Chinese government for their response to the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, saying they “covered up” the outbreak and “probably” cost the world “two months to respond.”

“There’s lots of open source reporting from China, from Chinese nationals that the doctors involved were either silenced or, or put in isolation or that sort of thing so word of this virus could not get out,” O’Brien told a crowd at the Heritage Foundation in Washington.

“If we had those and been able to sequence the virus and had the cooperation necessary from the Chinese, had a WHO team been on the ground, had a CDC team which we’d offered been on the ground, I think we could’ve dramatically curtailed what happened both in China and what’s now happening across the world,” he continued.

O’Brien also urged Americans to heed the warnings of the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention and take precautions to prevent further spread of coronavirus.

“If you’ve got a coworker who sneezes, send them home,” he said, adding that people should practice social distancing, wash their hands routinely, and take other protective measures. 

O’Brien, whose speech notably drew a smaller-than-usual crowd amid fears of crowded places, described the President’s response to the outbreak in the US as “courageous,” particularly for his decision to temporarily freeze air travel to highly affected areas. 

The coronavirus has currently spread to six continents, roiled financial and oil markets and have led to the cancellation of events, classes and other gatherings across the country.

7:38 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

NHL's San Jose Sharks to play in empty arena for next three home games

From CNN's Homero De La Fuente

The NHL’s San Jose Sharks announced today that the team will be playing their next three home games as scheduled but without fans in attendance. 

“Admission to games will be limited to home and visiting club personnel, approved credentialed media and broadcast partners, essential club and arena staff, and NHL officials," the team said.

The Sharks went on to say this:

“The safety of our fans, guests and partners is of the utmost importance. Sharks Sports & Entertainment and SAP Center management greatly appreciate your understanding during this unprecedented time.”
6:55 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

GLAAD Media Awards canceled because of coronavirus concerns

From CNN's Sheena Jones

The GLAAD Media Awards have been canceled because of concerns over coronavirus.

GLAAD is a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, which was expected to hold its 31st annual awards in New York on March 19.

“Given GLAAD’s long-standing commitment to the safety of our members, sponsors, and guests, the GLAAD Media Awards will no longer take place on March 19th in New York City. The team at GLAAD has been in communication with the City of New York and is following the latest recommendations from Governor Cuomo," GLAAD’s Rich Ferraro, chief communications officer, said in a statement.
7:32 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Italy records a jump of 2,313 coronavirus cases on Wednesday

From CNN's Valentina Di Donato in Rome and Nicola Ruotolo in Bologna 

Italy has recorded a jump of 2,313 coronavirus cases on Wednesday, with the total tally now at 12,462, the country's Civil Protection Agency said. 

This is the biggest recorded jump since the outbreak began, but the head of the Italian Civil Protection Agency Angelo Borelli said that authorities did not have all of the data for Lombardy, the worst hit region, on Tuesday so those numbers did not fully reflect the situation. 

6:52 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Chicago hospital builds "forward triage" tent for coronavirus protection

From CNN’s Bill Kirkos

Rush University Medical Center
Rush University Medical Center

Rush University Medical Center in Chicago has built a large tent in its “forward triage” area, an enclosed area outside its emergency room, which was originally partly designed to receive infectious disease patients.

The area serves as the hospital’s ambulance and private vehicle bay for incoming patients suspected of having the virus.

Rush is considered one of the best suited Chicago hospitals to handle coronavirus patients.

Hospital spokesperson Charles Jolie told CNN that all the air inside the tent and the ambulance bay is sanitized before it is exhausted outside to reduce the chances of contamination elsewhere. Jolie said the purpose of the tent is to add one additional layer of protection to ensure that patients elsewhere in the hospital who may be at risk of contracting the virus do not get infected.


7:05 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

24 states have declared a state of emergency due to coronavirus

From CNN's Raja Razek

As coronavirus continues to spread across the US, 23 states and Washington, DC, have declared a state of emergency.

Arizona, New Mexico, Louisiana, Arkansas and Washington, DC, all made their declarations today.

Here is a breakdown of when the other states made their declarations:

  • Michigan – March 10
  • Vermont – March 10
  • North Carolina – March 10
  • Massachusetts – March 10
  • Colorado – March 10
  • Ohio – March 9
  • Illinois – March 9
  • Rhode island – March 9
  • New Jersey – March 9
  • Oregon – March 8
  • New York – March 7
  • Pennsylvania – March 6
  • Utah – March 6
  • Kentucky – March 6
  • Indiana – March 6
  • Hawaii – March 5
  • Maryland – March 5
  • California – March 4
  • Florida – March 1
  • Washington state – Feb. 29
6:35 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

March Madness will be played without spectators

From CNN's David Close

NCAA President Mark Emmert has decided to hold the upcoming Division I men’s and women’s basketball tournaments without spectators.

In a statement, Emmert declared that "March Madness" will still take place — this after consultations with public health officials and a NCAA-appointed coronavirus advisory panel — but that the tournament will be held with only essential staff and family members. 

“I have made the decision to conduct our upcoming championship events, including the Division I men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, with only essential staff and limited family attendance," Emmert said in the statement.

The NCAA has also recommended that every upcoming sporting event — which would include the on-going conference basketball tournaments — to be closed to the public.

6:30 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Italian football club player tests positive for coronavirus, team says

Juventus player Daniele Rugani trains at JTC on March 10, in Turin, Italy.
Juventus player Daniele Rugani trains at JTC on March 10, in Turin, Italy. Juventus FC/Getty Images

Football player Daniele Rugani who plays for the Italian team Juventus, which is based in the northern city of Turin, has tested positive for coronavirus, the club said in a statement on Wednesday.

"Juventus Football Club is currently activating all the isolation procedures required by law," the statement says, adding that the club is tracing how many people he was in contact with. 

6:29 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Tours of the US capitol will be halted for the coming weeks, sources say

From CNN's Phil Mattingly and Manu Raju

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/FILE
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/FILE

The Sergeant at Arms has informed congressional leaders they are preparing to announce that all Capitol Tours will be halted for the remainder of the month due to the coronavirus, according to two congressional aides. 

The House and Senate Sergeants at Arms will make the announcement soon, a source said. The exact timing is unclear.