March 30 coronavirus news
The US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort is expected to soon dock in New York City.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo spoke about the coronavirus pandemic as the ship approached its dock.
"If you wait to prepare for when the storm hits, you lose because it's too late," he said.
Remember: The ship is not expected to treat coronavirus patients. Rather it will be used to relocate shore-based patients undergoing treatments that are not coronavirus-related in an effort to help ease the burden on hospitals.
According to CNN Health's tally of US cases that are detected and tested in the United States through US public health systems, there are at least 140,570 cases of coronavirus in the US; 2,443 people have died in the US from coronavirus.
The total includes cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as all repatriated cases. Hawaii and Wyoming have not reported a death from coronavirus.
Pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson announced on Monday that it plans to initiate human clinical trials of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate by September, and anticipates the first batches of the vaccine could be available for emergency use by early next year.
The vaccine development comes as part of a partnership between Johnson & Johnson and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), which is part of the US Department of Health and Human Services' Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.
BARDA and Johnson & Johnson "together have committed more than $1 billion of investment to co-fund vaccine research, development, and clinical testing," according to a press release from Johnson & Johnson.
“The world is facing an urgent public health crisis and we are committed to doing our part to make a COVID-19 vaccine available and affordable globally as quickly as possible," Johnson & Johnson Chairman and CEO Alex Gorsky said in the press release on Monday.
"As the world’s largest healthcare company, we feel a deep responsibility to improve the health of people around the world every day," Gorksy said. "Johnson & Johnson is well positioned through our combination of scientific expertise, operational scale and financial strength to bring our resources in collaboration with others to accelerate the fight against this pandemic.”
A painting by Vincent van Gogh was stolen overnight from a Dutch museum closed for the Covid-19 epidemic.
The Singer Laren Museum just outside Amsterdam sai that the painting is Van Gogh’s "The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring," which had been on loan from the Groninger Museum.
“I am shocked and unbelievably pissed off,” said museum director Jan Rudolph de Lorm during a news conference Monday afternoon.
“It is very bad for the Groninger Museum. It’s also very bad for Singer. But above all it is horrible for all of us, because art is there to be seen and shared by all of us, for society as a whole, to bring enjoyment, to bring inspiration, and also to bring comfort. Especially in this difficult time.”
US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin suggested there will be a fourth stimulus package to handle the effects of coronavirus, which could include hazard pay for first responders, as the President suggested earlier today.
“I think I agree with the President. I think that makes a lot of sense,” Mnuchin told Fox Business of potential hazard pay, adding that it will be “definitely something we will put in the next bill.”
The negotiation team is not yet working on a fourth bill, he said, noting that the Treasury Department is “working around the clock” to get the third stimulus programs up and running, but “We’re ready to work with Congress if we need more enhancements or additional funds.”
He added, “If we run out of money and this is a huge success, we will absolutely go back to Congress and ask for more money.”
Mnuchin reiterated that this will be a rough quarter and the administration is “sympathetic” to those who have lost their jobs.
“I think we’re going to have a rough quarter because we’ve shut down major parts of the economy,” he said.
He said loans through the Small Business Administration should be available starting on Friday, and documents and instructions will be released “later today,” calling it a “very simple process.”
US markets opened solidly in the green on Monday, building on last week's spike.
Here's how the markets opened today:
- The Dow gained 215 points, or 1%
- The S&P 500 advanced 1.4%
- And the Nasdaq climbed 1.5%
Some context: The rally comes after the markets fell sharply Friday but still enjoyed historic gains for the week. The Dow skyrocketed 12.8% last week — its best since June 1938. The S&P 500 finished up 10.3%, the strongest since March 2009.
The oil market remains in disarray. US oil prices tumbled 6% to $20.25 a barrel, leaving them on track for the lowest close since 2002.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort — which is expected to dock in the city today — will be provide a “morale boost” to the people.
“The fact the Navy is here, the military is here to help new York City in our hour of need, that is amazingly important to this city” he told Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.”
“What a shot in the arm to be able to see our military here to help us in such a powerful way. It’s very poignant and moving for all of us. We need the help,” he added.
About the Comfort: The ship will help ease the burden on hospitals treating coronavirus patients. It will be used to relocate shore-based patients undergoing treatments that are not coronavirus-related.
Federal, state and local governments have the responsibility of ensuring that hospitals are receiving the supplies they need to respond to the US coronavirus crisis, Dr. Deborah Birx, White House coronavirus response coordinator, said Monday morning.
"It is our job collectively — the state and local governments along with us — to ensure that the hospitals are receiving the supplies they need," Birx told Gayle King during an appearance on “CBS This Morning.”
She continued: "What's really important here is to look at all aspects of the supply chain. What does each hospital have and how are they being supplied? Are they being supplied by the private sector or are they relying on the pre-movement of the stockpile that went into warehouses."
"The hospitals are too busy to define what they need," she said.
At least 93 people have died of coronavirus in the Netherlands in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths to 864, according to the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment.
Some context: This is a decrease in the trend from recent days.