June 26 coronavirus news

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6:36 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

San Francisco delays reopening as coronavirus cases rise

From CNN's Cheri Mossburg and Alexandra Meeks

A man wears a face mask while cleaning an outdoor dining table at The Hook at San Francisco's Pier 39 on June 18.
A man wears a face mask while cleaning an outdoor dining table at The Hook at San Francisco's Pier 39 on June 18. Jeff Chiu/AP

San Francisco is delaying its reopening as coronavirus cases rise, according to Mayor London Breed.

Noting that San Francisco has seen a rise in cases, from 20 on June 15 to 103 on Thursday, Breed said in a series of tweets that at the current rate cases could double rapidly. 

“If that continues and we don’t intervene, we’ll be at such a high number that our only option would be to shut down,” Breed said.

San Francisco had planned to continue reopening the city on Monday.

The mayor urged residents to wear face coverings, maintain social distance, and practice good hygiene. Breed also encouraged essential workers and those with symptoms to get tested.

“I know people are anxious to reopen, I am too. But we can't jeopardize the progress we've made,” Breed said. “Let’s protect each other so that we can safely reopen San Francisco.”

Despite San Francisco's stay-at-home orders and various programs to flatten the curve of Covid-19 cases, the curve in the city is getting "quite steep," Public Health Director Dr. Grant Colfax said at a news conference Friday.

"We've talked about flattening that curve but that curve is not flat right now," Colfax said. "In fact, that curve is getting more and more vertical."

In the last couple of weeks, San Francisco has seen a near doubling in the rate of diagnosed infections, Colfax said. 

There have been no indications that the rise in cases are tied to a specific facility or event, but health officials say the data within the next few days in particular will be critical to see whether the pattern is sustained. 

"We're taking a pause here, we're not reversing, and I think we're just going to have to watch the data," Colfax said.

6:28 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

FDA sends warning letter to company over Covid-19 skin spray claims

From CNN's Jen Christensen

The US Food and Drug Administration sent a warning letter to Curativa Bay Corporation over its claims one of its products could protect against the novel coronavirus.

The FDA said Friday the Clearwater, Florida, based company advertised its Advanced Hypochlorous Skin Spray on its Facebook page as something that could “provide a good extra line of protection against many things that we all fear today… #Kill bacteria and viruses… #Coronavirus.”

The spray is a topical hypochlorous acid, an inorganic substance that can kill bacteria, but to sell a product in the US as a prevention or treatment for disease requires scientific evidence and well-controlled human clinical studies. The FDA says there is no such support. 

The FDA said the company needs to take corrective actions immediately to ensure that it is not misleadingly representing its products as safe and effective for a Covid-19 related use, or it will face legal action.

The FDA also said it was going to include the company on its list of firms that have received these warning letters for selling Covid-19-related products that are in violation of regulations. If the company takes corrective action, the FDA said it will remove it from its list.

6:26 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

Brazil reports 46,860 new Covid-19 cases

From CNN’s Luke Henderson and Marcia Reverdosa

This aerial photo shows freshly dug graves at the Vila Formosa cemetery in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Sunday.
This aerial photo shows freshly dug graves at the Vila Formosa cemetery in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Sunday. Miguel Schincariol/AFP/Getty Images

Brazil’s health ministry reported 46,860 new cases of novel coronavirus on Friday, bringing the total to at least 1,274,974.

The ministry also reported 990 people died from coronavirus, bringing the country’s death toll to 55,961.

Sao Paulo, Brazil’s most populous state and the epicenter of its Covid-19 outbreak, has at least 258,508 confirmed coronavirus cases and at least 13,966 people have from the virus, according to the State Health Secretary.

Rio de Janeiro state has at least 108,497 cases of coronavirus and at least 9,587 people have died from the virus, according to the State Health Secretary.

6:33 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

Travelers from the US "unlikely" to be allowed to travel to the European Union

From CNN’s Vasco Cotovio and James Frater in London

Jeff Haynes/AFP/Getty Images
Jeff Haynes/AFP/Getty Images

Travelers from the United States are “unlikely” to be allowed into the European Union as ambassadors of the 27 members states have agreed "in principle" to the criteria they will apply as the bloc begins to opens up, several EU officials told CNN on Friday

The agreement is not final as the ambassadors will still need to consult with their respective governments.

Under the current criteria — which takes into account the number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 people in the past 14 days — the US would likely be excluded.

An EU diplomat told CNN that it was very “unlikely” travelers from the US would be allowed in, adding that even though the list had not been finalized “the US’s chances are close to zero.” The diplomat also said, “with their infection rates... not even they can believe in that possibility.” 

Asked if the US was on a draft list of countries whose citizens would not be allowed to travel to the EU starting Wednesday, another EU diplomat would not confirm that list existed but said, “if you run the numbers you can create a list.” 

The first point on the checklist asks whether the country can "be considered as being in a comparable or better epidemiological situation as the average in the EU+ area" with regard to number of new infections, trend of new infections and response in areas such as testing, surveillance, contact tracing, containment, treatment and reporting.

 

5:40 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

Texas reports 28 new coronavirus-related deaths

From CNN's Jamiel Lynch

Texas has reported 5,707 new coronavirus cases today, bringing the total to at least 137,624, according to data from Texas Health and Human Services (THHS).

A total of 2,324 people have died in the state, including 28 additional deaths today, THHS said.

On Thursday, Texas recorded 5,996 new coronavirus cases.

According to the state, Texas has performed more than 1.9 million coronavirus tests.

To note: The figures released by the THHS may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.

5:42 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

California governor says coronavirus-related death rates around the state "are lagging"

From CNN's Cheri Mossburg

Pool/KCRA
Pool/KCRA

Gov. Gavin Newsom said coronavirus death rates in California "are lagging" and thus, do not accurately reflect the toll of the virus.

He warned that with the case count increasing, a rise in hospitalizations and death rates will soon follow. The governor implored people to wear masks and stay six feet apart.

"Please, please, practice common sense. Practice common decency. Please take this pandemic seriously," Newsom said. “Protect yourself, but also, protect others.” 

Newsom said the country is in "the midst of the first wave of this pandemic."

“We are not out of the first wave. This disease does not take a summer vacation," the governor added.

5:22 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

Argentina president reimposes Buenos Aires lockdown due to accelerated Covid-19 spread

From CNN's Stefano Pozzebon, Taylor Barnes and Claudia Rebaza

A man in Buenos Aires protests against the quarantine and the government of Alberto Fernández on Saturday.
A man in Buenos Aires protests against the quarantine and the government of Alberto Fernández on Saturday. Muhammed Emin Canik/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Argentina’s President Alberto Fernández reimposed a lockdown on the metro area of Buenos Aires, telling Argentines that “cases have grown exponentially” in recent days. 

“Coronavirus is an invisible enemy that one never knows when they have finally defeated it. When it looks like things are calm, it starts to return,” Fernandez said on Friday as he announced that residents in the Buenos Aires metro region will be expected to stay in their homes unless they are performing essential work or purchasing necessary provisions from July 1 to July 17. 

Fernández said that “practically 97%” of new cases in Argentina were detected in the Buenos Aires metro area. 

The president himself has been in self-isolation due to the pandemic at his official residence Quinta de Olivos since June 17. 

The country has reported a total of 52,457 Covid-19 cases with 2,606 new cases, an increase of 5.2% in the last 24 hours, while the death toll reached 1,167 on Friday. 

“Quarantine is a remedy for the pandemic, the only one that we know,” Fernandez said.

He added: “The economy will deteriorate but the economy will recover. What we will unfortunately not recover are those thousand Argentines who have left us.”

5:52 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

South Carolina governor says he will not lift restrictions until Covid-19 is under control

From CNN's Hollie Silverman

WIS
WIS

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said he will not lift restrictions on nightclubs, concert venues, theaters, auditoriums, spectator sports and other venues until Covid-19 is under control in the state.

"Ladies and gentlemen, we've got to follow the rules," McMaster said at a news conference. "This is a dangerous, deadly disease, you've got to follow the rules. Wear your mask."

He said that a majority of the new cases are among people under 40, particularly those age 30 to 35.

"They feel completely healthy yet they can be completely infected," McMaster said.

Rates of infection for that age group are "just going up, up, up," he said.

Despite the higher case counts, McMaster said that he will not mandate the use of masks.

"We cannot mandate. It is ineffective. It is impractical to have a mandate and everyone wear a mask because it is not enforceable and for me to tell us that we're going to require people to wear a mask, and then not be able to enforce it gives a false sense of security to those who believe that everybody is following the rules," McMaster said.

The numbers: South Carolina on Friday reported the highest number of people hospitalized in the state, Director of Public Health Dr. Joan Duwve said at the news conference.

There are currently 906 people hospitalized with complications from coronavirus, the largest number the state has seen, Duwve said.

At least 1,273 new cases were reported Friday, bringing the total to at least 30,263 cases and 694 deaths statewide, Duwve said. 

Hospitals are currently at 75% capacity, South Carolina National Guard Adjutant General Major General Van McCarty said at the news conference.

He said if hospitals reach 80% capacity statewide, they will deploy the surge plan. McCarty added that they will reduce elective surgeries if needed to help with capacity. 

"Our preference would be to keep patients in a traditional hospital. We will look to use the alternative measures we've talked about as only a second measure," McCarty said.

5:08 p.m. ET, June 26, 2020

Utah governor approves mask requirement for 2 counties

From CNN’s Andy Rose

People wait in line in front of a store in Salt Lake City on May 22.
People wait in line in front of a store in Salt Lake City on May 22. Rick Bowmer/AP

The governor of Utah is signing off on requests from two counties to require masks in public spaces. 

Brooke Scheffler, the spokesperson for Gov. Gary Herbert, told CNN that the governor has approved the requests from Salt Lake and Summit counties, although there is still not a statewide face covering rule in effect.

Scheffler said the two county governments are expected to announce details later Friday.

Utah has at least 20,050 coronavirus cases and at least 166 people have died from the virus, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University.