Coronavirus pandemic: Updates from around the world

By Ben Westcott, Jenni Marsh, Laura Smith-Spark, Fernando Alfonso III and Amir Vera, CNN

Updated 8:10 PM ET, Sun July 5, 2020
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4:49 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

Crowds flock to Michigan's Diamond Lake despite Covid-19 concerns

From CNN's Lauren del Valle

A group of people is seen in the waters of Diamond Lake in southern Michigan over the July 4 weekend.
A group of people is seen in the waters of Diamond Lake in southern Michigan over the July 4 weekend.

Instagram video captured people gathering at southern Michigan's Diamond Lake appearing to be in close proximity, without masks.

The Instagram page is run by the residents in the area and is meant to inform other residents about gatherings at Diamond Lake, which is only accessible by private home lake entry or one public boating drop off point.

One resident who runs the Instagram page told CNN the party was run by residents for residents in a public area of the lake. The Cass County community has thrown a Fourth of July party on the public sand bar for 30 years, he said. The resident asked to remain anonymous for safety concerns.

We’re not the only lake that had a Fourth of July party I can guarantee you that. People like their freedom, that’s all it comes down to especially on a day like the Fourth of July,” the man said.

Donations paid for the entertainment, trash removal and security guards, the resident said. 

“There’s one public access point to the lake with 57 parking spots, once they’re full that’s it. The majority of people in the video live here and they’re residents or this is their summer home,” the resident added.

A group of people is seen in the waters of Diamond Lake in southern Michigan over the July 4 weekend.
A group of people is seen in the waters of Diamond Lake in southern Michigan over the July 4 weekend.

We can’t control what people do. We made announcements saying we’re trying not to have everybody right packed in tight. We wanted to have more distance between people and you know that’s just young people wanting to enjoy their freedom,” he said.

Wearing masks is required in public places statewide in Michigan. Any individual leaving their residence must wear a face covering.

CNN has reached out to Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's office, local and state health department officials.

4:42 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

People flock to Wisconsin water park July 4 weekend

From CNN's Kristina Sgueglia and Laura James

Patrons gather at Noah's Ark Water Park in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, over the July 4 weekend.
Patrons gather at Noah's Ark Water Park in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, over the July 4 weekend.

People in Wisconsin flocked to Noah’s Ark Water Park over the Fourth of July weekend. The venue touts itself as the nation’s largest water park.

Noah's Ark Waterpark told CNN in a statement it has implemented a series of measures to protect park attendees and employees.

Mark Whitfield, the park's general manager, said the park required employees and guests to pass a temperature check health screening prior to entering the park.

"The health and safety of our Guests and Team Members is always our top priority at Noah’s Ark Waterpark," Whitfield told CNN.

Additionally all guests are required to wear masks to enter, while inside any buildings, and when in line for food, retail shops or non-water common areas.

The attractions where social distancing cannot be limited are closed. The park limited capacity at each attraction, including the pools.

Whitfield said in his statement that the park stopped selling tickets for July 4 on July 3 because the park reached its "predetermined capacity."

"We have also added dozens of hand sanitizing stations around the park, increased regular cleaning of attractions and high-traffic areas, and added educational signage and staff training to reinforce the importance of following all these safety measures while visiting. Nothing is more important than keeping our guests and staff safe," Whitfield said.
2:59 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

Remdesivir being surged to Covid-19 hot spots, FDA commissioner says

From CNN Health’s Wes Bruer

Commissioner of US Food and Drug Administration Dr. Stephen M. Hahn testifies at a hearing on Capitol Hill on June 23 in Washington, DC.
Commissioner of US Food and Drug Administration Dr. Stephen M. Hahn testifies at a hearing on Capitol Hill on June 23 in Washington, DC. Kevin Dietsch/AFP/Getty Images

FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen M. Hahn said on Sunday that the US government intends to “surge remdesivir to the areas that most need it.” 

Hahn told CNN that the country’s remdesivir supply has not run out and is being distributed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). 

When asked whether hospitals in current hot spots such as Texas or Florida can expect shipments of remdesivir, Hahn said “you should probably know the Vice President and I and others were in Florida, and this issue came up and we are receiving that feedback and then shipping remdesivir so it's available for people who need it.”

Last week: HHS announced that it had shipped the final allocation of the antiviral drug, prompting concerns there would not be enough to help states experiencing sharp rises in infections.

The government said at the time they were continuing to work with Gilead Sciences, Inc. "to determine how the company's anticipated inventory of 2 million doses of remdesivir by year’s end will be allocated and when.”

2:55 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

121 University of Washington students test positive for Covid-19

From CNN's Hollie Silverman 

University of Washington campus in Seattle, Washington.
University of Washington campus in Seattle, Washington. Shutterstock

There are 121 students at the University of Washington in Seattle who have tested positive for Covid-19, according to an updated joint press release from the University of Washington and Public Health Seattle & King County.

Of these students, 112 are residents of fraternity houses in the Greek Row section north of the campus, the release said. 

Students who tested positive but are not residents of those houses are close contacts of the residents, according to the release.

On July 3, the Interfraternity Council, a student-led governing board for UW fraternities, reported that at least 117 residents living in 15 fraternity houses self-reported positive tests, the release said.  

A pop up testing site was set up last week near Greek Row and has conducted nearly 1,300 tests as of this weekend, the release said. 

2:03 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

At least 129,000 people have died from coronavirus in the US

From CNN's Chuck Johnston

Medical staff transport a deceased patient outside of the Covid-19 intensive care unit at the United Memorial Medical Center on June 30 in Houston, Texas.
Medical staff transport a deceased patient outside of the Covid-19 intensive care unit at the United Memorial Medical Center on June 30 in Houston, Texas. Go Nakamura/Getty Images

There are at least 2,852,807 cases of coronavirus in the US, and at least 129,718 people have died, according to Johns Hopkins University's tally of cases.

So far on Sunday, Johns Hopkins University reported 13,371 new cases and 42 new deaths. 

The totals include cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as repatriated cases. 

1:20 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

US has enough remdesivir if the epidemic does not get worse, former FDA Commissioner says 

From CNN's Wes Bruer

Vials of the drug Remdesivir are seen during a press conference at the University Hospital Eppendorf on April 8 in Hamburg, Germany.
Vials of the drug Remdesivir are seen during a press conference at the University Hospital Eppendorf on April 8 in Hamburg, Germany. Ulrich Perrey/Pool/AFP/Getty Images

The US currently has enough remdesivir if the epidemic does not get any worse, according to former US Food and Drug Administration commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb. 

Remdesivir, an antiviral that is the only drug that has US Food and Drug Administration emergency authorization for use in treating coronavirus infections, is one of only a handful of treatment options that will be available before the end of the year, Gottlieb said on Sunday on CBS.

For the supply to last, the drug should be reserved for very sick or hospitalized Covid-19 patients, according to Gottlieb.

“But if the epidemic worsens and we want to extend use of the drug to patients who aren't as ill but have preexisting conditions that predict that they may become very sick, we don't have enough drug for that. and that's what we would have wanted. we would have had to set the groundwork for that months ago, and we didn't do that,” he said. 

More data: According to a study published in May by the New England Journal of Medicine, data showed remdesivir shortened the course of illness from an average of 15 days to about 11 days.

The maker of the drug, Gilead, later announced in a press release that remdesivir could also be helpful in treating moderate Covid-19 pneumonia. 

1:04 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

Texas distributes antiviral drug remdesivir to more than 150 hospitals across the state

From CNN’s Artemis Moshtaghian

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott distributed over 400 cases of the antiviral drug remdesivir to 157 hospitals across Texas as part of the state’s sixth remdesivir shipment received from US Health and Human Services (HHS), according to a statement from the governor’s office.

The Texas Department of State Health Services deployed more than 600 medical staff and 16 ventilators to hospitals in the lower Rio Grande Valley region to distribute 448 cases of remdesivir on Saturday.

Texas hospitals have received 1,425 cases of remdesivir from the HHS thus far. 

More context: Covid-19 cases have been surging in Texas. The Texas Department of State Health Services reported 8,258 new cases of Covid-19 in Texas on Saturday — the state's second-highest number of new cases reported in a single day.

2:25 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

Overnight camp in Georgia closes after counselor tests positive for coronavirus

From CNN’s Lori Daniel and Chuck Johnston

An overnight camp with locations in north Georgia has closed after campers and staff tested positive for coronavirus.

YMCA Camp High Harbour said that they learned a counselor had tested positive for Covid-19 on June 24.

Camp High Harbor closed both its locations and the counselor was immediately sent home, according to a statement by Lauren Koontz, CEO and president of the YMCA of Metro Atlanta.

“It should be noted that the counselor did pass the mandated safety protocols and did not exhibit any symptoms upon arrival. In fact, all counselors and campers attending passed all mandatory screenings,” Koontz said in a statement.

Parents were notified immediately, according to Koontz, and were given options to pick up their children between Wednesday and Saturday.

“We have since learned of additional positive Covid-19 test results of campers and staff, but cannot confirm a number,” Koontz said.

Around the region: At least 30 confirmed cases of the virus have been identified from camps at Lake Burton and Lake Allatoona, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.

“This number can change as results are reported, or if an individual who tested negative, later develops symptoms,” officials told the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

CNN has reached out to the Georgia Department of Health to confirm cases of the virus at the camp.

“In preparing for camp, we collaborated with the Centers for Disease Control and the American Camp Association and followed the safety guidelines of the Executive Order from the state of Georgia,” Koontz said.

 

12:13 p.m. ET, July 5, 2020

2 Chicago White Sox players test positive for Covid-19

From CNN's Homero DeLaFuente

Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago, Illinois
Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago, Illinois Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Major League Baseball’s Chicago White Sox announced on Sunday that two players tested positive for Covid-19. Both players are asymptomatic and have been placed in quarantine. 

The MLB resumed activity last week — games are scheduled to start on July 23 or 24.

"Both individuals who tested positive are asymptomatic, have been isolated in Chicago, and currently are being monitored by White Sox medical staff. Contact tracing for both was conducted. Both individuals will receive follow-up testing in the coming days. They will return to activities once they have recorded consecutive negative tests and passed appropriate Covid-19 protocols," the White Sox said in a statement.

"The health of our players and staff is our top priority, and the White Sox are adhering to all MLB health and safety protocols," the team added.