June 29 coronavirus news

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10:36 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

Miami-Dade mayor on Covid-19 surge: Young people are disregarding the rules

From CNN's Tina Burnside

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Giménez said the reopening of beaches is not the reason for the spike in coronavirus cases in South Florida — it's "younger people basically disregarding the rules."

"It's coincidental that two weeks after demonstrations happen here in Miami-Dade county, a lot by young people, that we've had this spike," Giménez said during an interview on CNN on Monday.

The mayor said he is closing the beaches for Fourth of July weekend to avoid the surge of people who are thinking about coming to the beach for the holiday. 

"I was afraid, though, of a surge of people coming in for the Fourth of July weekend, and our inability, possible inability to control that. That's why we closed the beaches for the Fourth of July," Giménez said.

The beach closures come as Florida is among at least 10 states seeing a 50% or more increase in Covid-19 cases compared to the previous week.

WATCH:

10:05 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

Coronavirus death toll in Bolivia passes 1,000

From CNN’s Sharif Paget in Atlanta

A city worker disinfects the entrance to the government identification office in La Paz, Bolivia, on June 16.
A city worker disinfects the entrance to the government identification office in La Paz, Bolivia, on June 16. Juan Karita/AP

Bolivia reported a total of 1,014 deaths from Covid-19, according to figures released by the country’s Health Ministry Monday.

Bolivia now exceeds the 1,000-figure mark, with the addition of 44 new deaths reported in the last 24-hour period, according to the ministry’s statistics.

There are 848 new infections across Bolivia, bringing the total figure of confirmed cases to 31,524, Monday’s statistics show. 

9:56 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

Argentina reports more than 2,100 new Covid-19 cases

From CNN’s Claudia Rebaza in London.

Members of Plan DETECT operation test people in the Palermo neighborhood for symptoms compatible with COVID-19 in Buenos Aires on June 24.
Members of Plan DETECT operation test people in the Palermo neighborhood for symptoms compatible with COVID-19 in Buenos Aires on June 24. Carol Smiljan/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Argentina reported 2,189 new Covid-19 cases as the total number of infections reached 59,933, according to data released by the country’s Health Ministry on Monday morning. 

The country’s death toll stands at 1,245, with 13 new deaths.

During the Ministry’s morning briefing Carla Vizzotti, Health Access Secretary, highlighted that almost 95% of the new cases reported belong to the Buenos Aires metro region (AMBA). 

On Friday evening, Argentina’s President Alberto Fernández reimposed a lockdown in the metro area of Buenos Aires due to “cases growing exponentially.” Fernández announced that residents will have to stay at home unless they are performing essential work or purchasing necessary provisions from July 1 to July 17. 

The president said that “practically 97 percent” of the cases reported in the last few days had been reported in the Buenos Aires metropolitan area. 

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

11:09 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

India's Maharastra state extends lockdown until July 31

From journalist Esha Mitra

Health care workers take the temperature and pulse rate of a resident in Dharavi, a densely-populated slum in Mumbai, India, on June 25.
Health care workers take the temperature and pulse rate of a resident in Dharavi, a densely-populated slum in Mumbai, India, on June 25. Satish Bate/Hindustan Times/Getty Images

The state of Maharashtra, home to the financial hub Mumbai and Bollywood film production, will continue with lock down measures until July 31 as the number of cases steadily rise. 

The state government has issued fresh guidelines for what it has named "Mission Begin Again." This includes movement for non-essential activities to be restricted within neighborhoods in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region.

"It is further directed that the movement of persons for the purposes of non-essential activities like shopping and the outdoor exercises, shall be restricted within the neighborhood area limits with all necessary prescribed mandatory precautions of wearing masks, social distancing and personal hygiene," a statement issued by the government read.

Only those going to work in offices and emergencies will be allowed unrestricted movement, the statement added.

"It is also directed that unrestricted movement will be permitted only for attending place of work and bonafide humanitarian requirement including medical reason.”

All essential shops, e-commerce activity for essential and non-essential items, all industrial units that are currently operational and home delivery of food will be allowed.

All essential and non-essential shops and market, except malls and market complexes, will be allowed to open from 9 am to 5 pm. 

Wearing of masks, social distancing and maintaining personal hygiene will continue.

9:47 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

New data highlights shortage of contact tracers in hotspot states

From CNN Health's Jacqueline Howard

Health officials have long called contact tracing — following and monitoring the contacts of a person infected with the coronavirus — a key to help stop the spread of Covid-19. Yet many of the hardest hit states still haven't built up contact tracing to meet what has been recommended. 

In April, the National Association of County and City Health Officials estimated that communities across the United States would need 30 professionals per 100,000 people in the community to be involved in contact tracing, given the magnitude of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Now in eight Covid-19 hotspots emerging nationwide, there are far fewer contact tracers than that estimate, according to new data obtained by CNN from Nephron Research, an independent health care research firm that has been monitoring contact tracing across states. The group's latest data report shows that as of Monday:

  • Nevada has about 13 tracers per 100,000.
  • Florida has about 7 tracers per 100,000.
  • Arizona has about 5 tracers per 100,000.
  • Idaho has about 14 tracers per 100,000.
  • Texas has about 11 tracers per 100,000.
  • Tennessee has about 9 tracers per 100,000.
  • Georgia has around 2 tracers per 100,000.
  • South Carolina has about 8 tracers per 100,000.

"The majority of 'hot spot' states fall short on tracing," the Nephron Research report says. 

The only states in the nation that have at least 30 contact tracers per 100,000 people, according to the Nephron Research data, are:

  • Utah, with about 37 tracers;
  • South Dakota, with about 39;
  • New York, about 49;
  • North Dakota, about 46;
  • Nebraska, about 38;
  • Massachusetts, about 36;
  • and although it's not a state, the District of Columbia has about 42.

When asked how the United States is doing with contact tracing, the nation's top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, told CNN: "I don’t think we’re doing very well."

What the experts say: Instead of doing contact tracing just by phone, communities need to have "boots on the ground" and do it in person, Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said during an interview with CNN’s Elizabeth Cohen that aired Sunday night as part of the Aspen Ideas Festival.

Fauci noted that it’s difficult to do contact tracing with coronavirus, since in hotspots, 20% to 40% of those infected are asymptomatic, and in those cases, "contact tracing doesn't work no matter how good you are because you don't know who you're tracing."

9:30 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

Democratic leaders call for GOP to negotiate more stimulus

From CNN's Haley Byrd

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer hold a news conference in Washington, DC, on February 11.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer hold a news conference in Washington, DC, on February 11. Alex Brandon/AP

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell today calling for Republicans to negotiate for another round of Covid-19 relief.  

"Americans need and deserve bold action now. We have overcome larger problems than the COVID-19 pandemic but not without powerful and effective actions by our government,” they wrote. "We are outraged that instead of holding bipartisan, bicameral negotiations during the June work period, you chose to prioritize the confirmation of right-wing judges and several Republican-led committees devoted precious time to chasing President Trump’s wild conspiracy theories."
9:28 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

These South Florida beaches will close July 4 weekend over fears of Covid-19 spread

From CNN's Kelly McCleary, Melissa Alonso and Susannah Cullinane, CNN

People visit South Beach in Florida on June 27.
People visit South Beach in Florida on June 27. Michele Eve Sandberg/Shutterstock

Beaches in Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach, popular with residents and tourists, will be closed Fourth of July weekend as officials keep a cautious eye on the rapidly rising number of new coronavirus cases in Florida.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez says all beaches and parks in the county will close from Friday, July 3, through Tuesday, July 7. He warned the closure could be extended if conditions don't improve and people don't follow rules designed to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Beaches in Palm Beach County, Florida, will also be closed for the Fourth of July weekend, Mayor Dave Kerner said.

"That community spread that would go with that amount of people on the beach — we're not in a position to handle that," Kerner told CNN's New Day.

Broward County cities will follow Miami-Dade County's example to close beaches ahead of July 4, the city of Fort Lauderdale said in a tweet. Beaches in Broward County will be closed from July 3 through July 5, according to the tweet.

Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis confirmed beaches would be closed from July 3 through July 5.

"The reason why we're doing this is because we feel that we will not be able to provide the necessary safe environment that everyone is entitled to enjoy when they come to our beaches," he said.

CNN's Randi Kaye reports the latest on Florida's Covid-19 cases:

9:16 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

At least 12 states hit pause on reopening plans as coronavirus cases spike

From CNN's Christina Maxouris

People sit by the bar of a restaurant in Austin, Texas, on June 26.
People sit by the bar of a restaurant in Austin, Texas, on June 26. Sergio Flores/AFP/Getty Images

At least 12 states have by now paused or rolled back plans to reopen, hoping the move will slow further spread of the virus.

In the past week, officials and state leaders have made repeated pleas to Americans to stay away from crowded spaces, keep their distance and try to stay at home as much as possible.

Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee announced the counties that were preparing to enter into the fourth phase of reopening — with essentially no restrictions — will not do so just yet.

"We all want to get back to doing all the things we love in Washington during the summer, and fully open our economy, but we aren't there yet," the governor said in a statement. "This is an evolving situation and we will continue to make decisions based on the data."

In Texas and Florida — both of which have raised alarm among experts with a rapid rise in cases — bars were ordered closed for a second time after officials suggested they were a driving force behind cases of coronavirus.

In a similar move, California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Sunday ordered bars closed in seven counties: Los Angeles, Fresno, Imperial, Kern, Kings, San Joaquin and Tulare.

He recommended closing them in eight other counties, including Contra Costa, Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Stanislaus and Ventura.

At least 31 states are now seeing an increase in new cases compared to the previous week, according to data from John Hopkins University.

9:06 a.m. ET, June 29, 2020

US reports busiest weekend for air travel in months

From CNN's Gregory Wallace and Pete Muntean

Air travel reached a new pandemic high point this past weekend, surging to as much as 24% of usual traveler volumes. 

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) figures show about 2.3 million people passed through airport security checkpoints between Thursday and Sunday, down from the 10.4 million people the agency screened on the same days last year.  

The busiest day was Sunday, when TSA screened nearly 634,000.   

Sunday was American Airlines' second busiest day in terms of passengers since March, when air traffic was cratering. The airline has been capping flight capacity but recently announced that starting Wednesday it will allow every seat on each flight to be purchased.  

Experts predict a surge of travel over the upcoming July 4 holiday weekend.