EPA approves 2 Lysol products to kill coronavirus on surfaces
From CNN's Gisela Crespo
The US Environmental Protection Agency has approved two Lysol products as effective against coronavirus when used on hard, non-porous surfaces.
The EPA announced Monday that Lysol Disinfectant Spray and Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist meet the agency's criteria for use against coronavirus based on laboratory testing that found both products kill the virus two minutes after contact.
Why this matters: In a statement, the EPA explained that before companies can legally claim its products work against a certain pathogen, the agency must first authorize it based on a review of data.
Guidance issued in January in response to the outbreak allowed manufacturers to provide the EPA with data that shows a product's effectiveness against coronavirus. Based on this guidance and the agency's review of products, the EPA has a list of more than 420 products that meet the agency’s criteria for use against the virus, including several Lysol products.
Lysol said in a statement it is currently working on testing the efficacy of other disinfectant products against Covid-19.
"In the face of the pandemic, Lysol continues to work with a wide range of scientific and health experts to educate the public on the importance of hygiene," said Rahul Kadyan, executive vice president of Reckitt Benckiser in North America, Lysol's parent company.
10:49 a.m. ET, July 7, 2020
Iran reports highest Covid-19 daily death toll since outbreak began
From CNN's Ramin Mostaghim, Sara Mazloumsaki and Hamdi Alkhshali
Deaths from the Covid-19 epidemic in Iran hit a high record on Tuesday as 200 new deaths were registered over the past 24 hours, the highest since the virus outbreak in the country, state news Mehr reported.
Iran's Health Ministry Spokesperson Sima Lari said Tuesday during a daily press conference in Tehran that over the past 24 hours, 2,637 new cases of Covid-19 were reported, bringing the total number of infections in Iran to 245,688 and the country's total death toll has risen to 11,931.
Lari also said that: "Out of 2,637 detected cases, 1,455 have been hospitalized across the country."
The health ministry's spokesperson warned people to be more vigilant and everybody in general must avoid unnecessarily leaving their homes and wear facial masks indoors in public places including buses and subways.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has mandated the wearing of masks in public after coronavirus cases continued to rise in recent weeks.
He announced on Saturday that the wearing of masks would become compulsory in public spaces as of Sunday, July 5, according to the Iranian state news agency, IRNA.
9:29 a.m. ET, July 7, 2020
Florida hospital ICUs near Miami, Orlando and Tampa have hit capacity
From CNN's Rosa Flores, Randi Kaye and Sara Weisfeldt
In Florida, 43 hospital ICU’s in 21 counties have hit capacity and show zero ICU beds available, according to data released by the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA). This includes hospitals in the following counties:
Miami-Dade (which includes the city of Miami)
Broward (which includes Fort Lauderdale)
Hillsborough (which includes Tampa)
Orange (which includes Orlando)
Another 32 hospitals show ICU bed availability of 10% or less, per the AHCA data.
In addition, 14 hospitals have hit capacity of non-ICU hospital beds and another 54 hospitals have 10% or less non-ICU hospital beds available.
Trump is expected to travel to a coronavirus hotspot later this week
From CNN's Betsy Klein
President Trump is expected to travel to Doral, Florida, later this week, landing squarely in the center of a coronavirus hotspot and potentially taxing the already-limited local health resources.
Despite the raging coronavirus pandemic, Trump will turn his attention Friday to the issue of drug trafficking in South America, visiting US Southern Command for a briefing, a White House official confirmed to CNN. The trip was first reported by Politico.
Doral, where US Southern Command is located, is just under two miles from the President’s golf club. But it is also in Miami-Dade County, which is currently experiencing a coronavirus outbreak.
Miami-Dade County has seen a 90% increase in the number of Covid-19 patients being hospitalized in the past 13 days, according to the latest data released by Miami-Dade County Government.
It has also seen a staggering increase in the number of ICU beds being used (86%) and in the use of ventilators (127%). The 14-day average positivity rate in Miami-Dade County is 23%, according to data released by county government.
Remember: A presidential visit – no matter who is in office – requires a significant amount of resources, with White House officials, White House Medical Unit representatives, and US Secret Service agents traveling in advance of the president to coordinate with local officials on the ground.
Here are some steps that are taken in preparation of a trip of this nature:
There is an extensive amount of medical preparation involved each time a president travels, with plans in place for the worst case scenario.
There is always a primary hospital, usually designated by the White House Medical Unit ahead of a trip.
There is “an in-depth, comprehensive survey of that hospital” for its medical capabilities, former Secret Service Agent Jonathan Wackrow, a CNN contributor, said.
The White House Medical Unit and Secret Service will assess the hospital and coordinate logistics with staff to be prepared for any type of medical emergency.
They will also install secure communications such that agents traveling on the ground can quickly be in touch with the hospital, where an agent is always in place.
Transportation routes and airlift options are planned and tested in advance
Additionally, there are “overflight hospitals” designated ahead of a visit, multiple hospitals where Air Force One could quickly land in the event of a medical emergency on its route.
There’s also a press component involved – in the event of a transfer of power under the 25th Amendment, there are plans for a place for a press conference and where the transfer of government would take place.
There is usually a trauma bay reserved for the President, but it’s possible that one is just designated rather than taken out of commission when a hospital is particularly taxed.
“We’re not going to displace any medical care to be on standby for the President, but if he goes there, there will be a significant impact to the hospital,” Wackrow said.
With additional reporting from Rosa Flores and Sara Weisfeldt
8:45 a.m. ET, July 7, 2020
Michigan governor: "Mask up, from the White House to the statehouse"
From CNN's Adrienne Vogt
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer reiterated the importance of wearing masks and said she would implement more coronavirus restrictions if needed.
“It's incumbent on every one of us to mask up, from the White House to the statehouse and everywhere in between,” Whitmer told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota.
“I would hate to think that the sacrifice that we’ve made could be made in vain because some people are losing interest or dropping their guard. We’ve got to double down more than ever,” she said.
Whitmer said the state was supposed to move on to a phase five of reopening, but she reversed course before July 4 because cases were ticking up in the state.
“I’m not going to be bullied into moving before it's safe. And if we have to move back, we’re gonna,” she said.
Gyms and theaters are not open in Michigan. Whitmer said that she has no issue with closing down other industries, such as hair salons, if there are outbreaks.
“I’m prepared to take heat if that’s what it’s going to take to keep people safe,” she said.
Watch the interview:
10:47 a.m. ET, July 7, 2020
Catch up: Here's the latest on the coronavirus pandemic in the US
It's Tuesday morning in the US, and the country is nearing 3 million reported coronavirus cases.
So far, more than 2,938,000 cases have been recorded since the pandemic began, and cases are increasing in at least 31 states.
Here are the latest updates on the pandemic:
We're still in the first wave: Because infection numbers never dropped to where officials hoped they would, the nation's top infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said the recent rapid rise in cases is considered a surge — not a second wave.
Contact tracing no longer an option in some places: Cases are rising so quickly across parts of the South and Southwest, contact tracing is no longer possible, according to a health expert. "I don't see how it's possible to even do that," Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of tropical medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, told CNN.
The fate of international students: US immigration officials announced Monday that International students who are pursuing degrees in the United States will have to leave the country or risk deportation if their universities switch to online-only courses.
The latest from Florida: Though the Sunshine State set a record for most new cases in a single day over the weekend, Commissioner of the Florida Department of Education announced Monday that its schools will open their doors in August. Meanwhile, Florida's Miami-Dade County decided it was done playing by the state's rules and moved to shut down restaurants again.
9:04 a.m. ET, July 7, 2020
Just days after reopening, coronavirus forces several English pubs to close again
From CNN's Rob Picheta in London
Several English pubs have had to close their doors again after customers tested positive for coronavirus, dealing an early blow to the country's efforts to reopen its establishments.
Customers at pubs across the country were asked for contact details before they could enter, in order to help with contact tracing if someone was later found to have the virus.
Now, at least three venues have had to shut again, after some customers tested positive for Covid-19 following their visit at the weekend.
A post on the Facebook page of the Fox and Hounds pub in Batley, north England, said a customer — who had been at the premises on Saturday — called on Monday to say they had tested positive for coronavirus.
"On their visit they was unaware (sic) and had no symptoms," the post added.
"This isn't the message we wanted to write so soon but The Lighthouse will be closed due to a customer testing positive," a pub in Burnham-on-Sea, in southwest England, added on social media.
Both pubs said their staff members were being tested. Pubs were allowed to open in England on Saturday for the first time in three months.
Regeneron awarded $450 million US government contract for investigational antibody therapy
From CNN Health’s Gisela Crespo
Biotechnology company Regeneron has been awarded a $450 million contract to manufacture and supply REGN-COV2, a combination antibody treatment for Covid-19 that is now in late-stage clinical trials. The funding is part of the federal government's Covid-19 vaccine program, "Operation Warp Speed."
The agreement with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority and US Department of Defense supports manufacturing of the drug so that it can be made available immediately in the United States if clinical trials are successful and it receives emergency use authorization or approval from the US Food and Drug Administration.
The company started scaling up production of the treatment in the spring and said that if OK'd by the FDA, it would be available in the United States at no cost.
"This manufacturing and supply agreement with BARDA and the Department of Defense could help REGN-COV2 reach many people quickly, hopefully helping to change the course of this deadly and still-raging pandemic," Dr. Leonard S. Schleifer, Regeneron co-founder and chief executive officer, said in a statement.
The Higher Administrative Court in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia ruled the lockdown measures lifted Monday as it stated that they are likely to be unlawful.
Germany has been relatively successful in fighting the coronavirus, but there have been several outbreaks at slaughterhouses in the past month that threaten to undermine the gradual reopening of its economy.