March 28 coronavirus news

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5:13 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

First death of infant in connection with coronavirus reported in the US

A Chicago baby is the first infant death in the US associated with coronavirus, Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said Saturday.

"There has never before been a death associated with COVID-19 in an infant. A full investigation is underway to determine the cause of death," Ezike said. "We must do everything we can to prevent the spread of this deadly virus. If not to protect ourselves, but to protect those around us."

An investigation into the cause of death is underway, Ezike said.

The death of a child younger than one year with coronavirus has previously been reported in China. That child had a pre-existing condition.

5:07 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Ontario to receive 5 million N95 respirators and will implement penalties for retailer price-gouging 

James Black/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images
James Black/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

The Canadian province of Ontario has ordered 5 million N95 respirators that will distributed throughout the province on a rolling basis, said Doug Ford, the province's premier.

Canada’s four major automobile companies are utilizing their engineering and manufacturing departments to manufacture and procure the province with a request for 10,000 ventilators to be delivered over the next four weeks, Ford said in a press conference Saturday.

Ford issued an emergency order where price gougers could face jail time and potential penalties for exploiting essentials items needed by the general public to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

"If you’re selling facemasks, protective gloves, cold medicine, hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes and you’re hiking the price, 5 times, 10 times what it should be, you’re done, you’re gone because we’re coming after you," Ford said.
4:27 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

WHO's Africa Region confirms 2,650 coronavirus cases and 49 deaths

The 47 nations in the World Health Organization's Africa Region have confirmed 2,650 coronavirus cases and 49 deaths, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a series of tweets Saturday.

In the tweets, Tedros explained how WHO is helping African countries during this pandemic.

Below is the full thread:

4:03 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Italy has received $68 million in donations to purchase more masks and ventilators

A doctor at San Matteo Hospital in Pavia, Italy, treats coronavirus patients on Thursday, March 26.
A doctor at San Matteo Hospital in Pavia, Italy, treats coronavirus patients on Thursday, March 26. Claudio Furlan/LaPresse/AP

The Italian Civil Protection Department has received donations totaling more than $68 million (61 million euros) which will be spent on more surgical masks and ventilators, according to Head of Italian Civil Protection Angelo Borelli in a press conference on Saturday.

The donations came from private donors and companies, including the fashion house Armani and the owner of the soccer team Juventus. 

Italy's only producer of ventilators will now increase their production, Borelli said during the presser.

Borelli also said 11,636 people have volunteered to help the Italian Civil Protection with the coronavirus crisis, and the government received more than 7,714 responses from former nurses who intend to return to medical practice. 

"It shows constant solidarity among our citizens," Borelli added.
3:53 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

There are at least 111,980 coronavirus cases in the US

A doctor from SOMOS Community Care prepares to test a patient at a drive-through testing center at Lehman College in New York City on March 28.
A doctor from SOMOS Community Care prepares to test a patient at a drive-through testing center at Lehman College in New York City on March 28. John Moore/Getty Images

There are at least 111,980 cases of the novel coronavirus in the United States, according to CNN Health’s tally of US cases that are detected and tested in the country through its public health systems,

Rhode Island reported its first deaths, only three states remain that haven’t recorded a coronavirus death, Hawaii, West Virginia and Wyoming.

So far, 1,858 people have died in total in the US from coronavirus. 

The total includes cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other U.S. territories, as well as all repatriated cases.

For the most up-to-date US numbers compiled by CNN, please check this map which automatically refreshes every 10 minutes.

3:49 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Pence spoke with Michigan's governor on Saturday

In another sign of how Vice President Mike Pence is managing relationships with certain Democratic governors differently than President Trump, Pence spoke with Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Saturday morning, per a tweet from her account.

Whitmer, whom Trump has criticized for being insufficiently "appreciative" and "way in over her head" in recent days, posted on Twitter that she had a "good call with @VP this morning " and that the state of Michigan had just received a delivery of 112,000 additional N95 respirators.

Some context: Trump on Friday said he had advised Pence not to call Whitmer or other governors who have been critical of the federal response.

"I tell him — I mean, I'm a different type of person — I say, 'Mike, don't call the governor of Washington. You're wasting your time with him. Don't call the woman in Michigan,'" Trump said during a Friday news conference.

"You know what I say? If they don't treat you right, I don't call," Trump said, before noting that Pence is "a different type of person" and will "call quietly anyway."

CNN reached out to Pence’s office for comment.

 

4:06 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Ohio governor asks manufacturers to help produce personal protection equipment

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine in February.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine in February. Tony Dejak/AP

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has asked for any manufacturers who can help produce critically needed personal protection equipment for the state’s health care workers to contact his office.

DeWine said “it should be a no secret to anyone that we have a real, real shortage” of these health care items.

"If you are a manufacturer and you can make any of this stuff, we need to hear from you right away.” DeWine said during a press conference Saturday. "We received our share from the national strategic stockpile. But just like every other state, it was simply not enough.”

DeWine outlined the top 10 items the state needs:

  • Surgical gowns
  • Face surgical masks
  • Gloves (nitrile vinyl, or butyl)
  • N95 particulate respirators
  • Isolation gowns
  • Face shields
  • Thermometers
  • Foot coverings
  • Tyvek coveralls
  • Ventilator tubing

2:34 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Trump sends off Navy hospital ship bound for New York City

Patrick Semansky/AP
Patrick Semansky/AP

President Trump delivered remarks in front of the USNS Comfort before it departed for New York on Saturday.

Trump expressed his gratitude to “the dedicated service members who will soon be on the front lines of this fight.”

“This great ship behind me is a 70,000-ton message of hope and solidarity to the incredible people of New York,” Trump said.

Trump said the ship was supposed to be undergoing maintenance for four weeks, but was finished and ready to sail in four days.

Trump said that the USNS Comfort would not treat patients with coronavirus but rather provide surge capacity for those with other urgent care needs.

“Their mission will be to care for New Yorker’s who do not have the virus but who require urgent care. In other words, they'll be using this, people will be coming out of hospitals who don't have the virus and they'll be on this ship where they have great operating rooms and great facilities and the places in-bound, on land will be where people that have the virus will be,” Trump said.

The President added that the ship is scheduled to arrive in New York on Monday and begin treating patients on Tuesday.

Details of the ship: Trump touted the capabilities of the USNS Comfort and outlined what is onboard the ship.

“It is fully loaded with 12 operating rooms and they are fully equipped. 1,000 hospital beds, a medical laboratory, a pharmacy, an optometry lab, digital radiology, a cat scan, two oxygen producing plants, and a helicopter deck which will be used very actively,” Trump said.

2:32 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Trump gives update on how many supplies FEMA has distributed

Patrick Semansky/AP
Patrick Semansky/AP

President Trump shared updated figures on how many medical supplies the Federal Emergency Management Agency has distributed to states during the coronavirus outbreak.

The figures were shared during his remarks before the USNS Comfort hospital ship departed Norfolk, Virginia, on Saturday. The ship is headed to New York City.

“FEMA has shipped or delivered 11.6 million N95 respirators, 36 million surgical masks, 5.2 million face shields...We have millions and millions of new medical items being made as we speak and purchased. 4.3 million surgical gowns, 22 million gloves and 8,100 ventilators," Trump said.