July 14 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Steve George, Tara John, Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes and Melissa Macaya, CNN

Updated 12:50 AM ET, Wed July 15, 2020
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4:58 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Mexico extends US border restrictions for nonessential travel until August

From CNN's Natalie Gallón, Karol Suarez and Paula Newton

Commuters line up June 16 at the San Ysidro crossing port in Tijuana, Mexico.
Commuters line up June 16 at the San Ysidro crossing port in Tijuana, Mexico. Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images

Mexico is extending for the third time its US border restrictions until August, according to the Mexican Foreign Ministry. 

"After checking the rise of the COVID-19 spread, Mexico proposed to the US the extension of all non-essential traffic restriction at the common border for 30 more days," the Foreign Ministry announced on its official Twitter account Tuesday.

The restrictions will continue under the same terms it was first implemented on March 21, permitting essential travel.

"Both countries will continue looking to coordinate the sanitary measures at the border region. The measures will be valid until August 21, 2020," the ministry added.

This comes after Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said the pandemic "is losing intensity" after meeting with his health cabinet on Sunday.  

"I want to tell you that the report is positive, is good, the conclusion is that the pandemic is decreasing, is losing intensity," López Obrador said in a video address to the nation.

The US border with Canada border is also expected to remain closed until at least August 21, two Canadian government sources with knowledge of the situation told CNN, extending the ban on nonessential travel between the two countries for another month.

The extended restrictions will include stepped-up enforcement and surveillance at most Canadian land borders in the coming weeks, said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity as they are not authorized the speak publicly on the matter.

4:52 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Schools should open, but local leaders will need to keep an eye on case numbers, Fauci says

From CNN's Jen Christensen and Lauren Mascarenhas

Dr. Anthony Fauci speaks during a Georgetown University Global Health Initiative webinar on Tuesday.
Dr. Anthony Fauci speaks during a Georgetown University Global Health Initiative webinar on Tuesday.

Schools should bring students back to class, but local leaders will need to watch local infection rates, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday.

“Let’s try and get them open to the extent that we can, but let’s take a look at the dynamics of the infection in the area that you’re in,” said Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infections Diseases and member of the White House coronavirus task force.

“We should try as best as possible to keep the children in school for the reasons that the unintended downstream ripple effect consequences of keeping the kids out of school and the impact on working families, and on other aspects of society can be profound,” Fauci said during a Georgetown University Global Health Initiative webinar. “However, that’s going to vary from where you are in the country and what the dynamics of the outbreak are in your particular region.”

The safety of the children and the welfare of the teachers are paramount, Fauci said. He added that local leaders need to make decisions based on safety.

5:23 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Trump says it would be a "terrible decision" not to go back to school in the fall

From CNN's Jason Hoffman

President Trump said it would be a “terrible decision” if schools don’t open on time in the fall, ignoring possible concerns from those who view it as unsafe.

When asked what he would tell parents and teachers who don’t think it’s safe to return to school, Trump said he would tell those people to find new decision makers.

“I would tell parents and teachers that you should find yourself a new person, whoever’s in charge of that decision cause it’s a terrible decision.” Trump said in an interview with CBS News. “Because children and parents are dying from that trauma too. They’re dying because they can’t do what they’re doing.”

He did not say what he meant when he said people are “dying from that trauma too.”

Trump again claimed that people are playing politics with schools reopening in the fall. He touted the economic recovery from coronavirus, what he called a V-shaped recovery, and said Democrats don’t want that to happen.

“I also say a decision like that is politics. Because we’re starting to do very well in the polls because I’m for law and order. I’m for strong business. Our jobs are coming back at a record level, we’ve never seen anything like this. We’re heading up, it’s turning out to be the V. I built it once before, the strongest economy ever, I’m doing it again. And they don’t want that to happen,” Trump said. “They is the Democrats,” he added.

Trump continues to push for schools to reopen in the fall, despite a record number of new coronavirus cases across the country. 

In a call with governors on Monday, Vice President Mike Pence reiterated the administration’s desire that states move to open their schools in time for the fall semester, but made it clear that those decisions will ultimately be made at the local level.

The suggestion that schools are currently on track to open safely has been dismissed as fantasy by top teachers unions and medical organizations. 

Many of those groups and others have called for a more comprehensive reopening plan, a say in crafting it, and the funding necessary to retrofit American schools and adapt curriculum. 

CNN's Gregory Krieg contributed to this report.

Watch here:

4:55 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Fauci says Covid-19 has the potential to be as serious as the 1918 pandemic

From CNN's Jen Christensen and Lauren Mascarenhas

Nurses in Lawrence, Massachusetts, care for victims during the Spanish flu epidemic in 1918.
Nurses in Lawrence, Massachusetts, care for victims during the Spanish flu epidemic in 1918. Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease specialist and prominent member of the White House coronavirus task force, said Tuesday that Covid-19 is a “pandemic of historic proportions.”

“I think we can’t deny that fact,” Fauci said during a Georgetown University Global Health Initiative webinar. “If you look at the magnitude of the 1918 pandemic where anywhere from 50 to 75 to 100 million people globally died, that was the mother of all pandemics and truly historic. I hope we don’t even approach that with this, but it does have the makings of, the possibility of … approaching that in seriousness.”

Fauci added he hopes the interventions that are being tested currently will help prevent such a disaster. 

The challenge in the country now is the resurgence of infections in the South and Southwestern part of the country. Fauci said California, Florida, Arizona and Texas are the states to watch now.

“They’re seeing record numbers of cases, mostly interestingly, among young individuals,” Fauci said.

The rise in cases suggest a link to the lifting of restrictions in those states, he said.

“Individuals, mostly young people, were seen at bars congregated in crowded places, many of them without masks, which really adds fuel to the fire,” Fauci said.

4:42 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Virginia governor: "No shirt, no shoes, no mask, no service"

From CNN’s Eileen McMenamin

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam holds a coronavirus briefing on Tuesday.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam holds a coronavirus briefing on Tuesday. Pool/WTVR

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced plans to step up enforcement of coronavirus restrictions statewide, citing an increase in cases especially in the tourist area of Hampton Roads.

“There's clearly some substantial community spread. A lot of that increase is driven by people socializing, without wearing masks, especially young people. As a matter of fact, the increase in the age group of 20 to 29-year-olds from here, compared to early June, is up 250%,” he said. “And it is very concerning.”

Virginia’s Department of Health will immediately deploy 100 additional inspectors to ramp up enforcement of mask-wearing and social distancing. The governor also called on restaurant and business owners to take action, warning their licenses will be on the line. 

“If a patron of your establishment is violating the rules, you have the ability to say no. It's just like the signs in so many store windows that say ‘No shirt, no shoes, no service.’ Now it should be ‘No shirt, no shoes, no mask, no service,'" Northam said. “You don't have to serve a patron who's not wearing a face covering. You can tell them to leave. And if they don't, they're trespassing and you can, in turn, call the police.”

Health Commissioner Dr. Norman Oliver said the overwhelming majority of Virginians have been “doing the right thing,” which is why the state has not seen a spike in coronavirus cases like Florida or Texas.

“However, there are a number of people who have in fact not been following the guidelines and, as the governor says, we are going to get much stricter in enforcing those guidelines," he said.

4:37 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Mississippi hospitalization numbers are highest since pandemic began

From CNN's Molly Silverman

During a news conference on July 9, Mississippi State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs sits in front of a chart showing a spike in the state's coronavirus cases.
During a news conference on July 9, Mississippi State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs sits in front of a chart showing a spike in the state's coronavirus cases. Rogelio V. Solis/AP

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said the Covid-19 hospitalization numbers Tuesday were by far the largest number in the state since the first case was reported on March 11.

Reeves said 805 are hospitalized for Covid-19 and 254 additional hospitalizations are suspected Covid-19 positive and are waiting for their test results.

State Health Official Dr. Thomas Dobbs said there is increasing stress on the hospital system.  

Dobbs said in the past five days, the total confirmed hospitalized patients in Mississippi has gone up by 119 cases. In the past five days, there has been 40 additional intensive care unit patients and 22 additional patients requiring ventilation.

“If we look at hospital capacity, today there are 10 ICUs in Mississippi that have zero beds available. It has become a real issue," Dobbs said.

Dobbs added that 25 hospitals in Mississippi have less than 25% capacity.

4:17 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Without a vaccine, the US could be "wrestling with this virus" for a few years, CDC director says

From CNN's Amanda Watts

The director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said without a “biological countermeasure” such as a vaccine, “we're going to have to go through two or three years of wrestling with this virus.” 

When it comes to a coronavirus vaccine, CDC director Dr. Robert Redfield said, “I've never seen the government move faster."

“It's clear that this first experience is really going to still leave over 75% of the American public susceptible to this virus,” he said during a webinar with the Buck Institute on Tuesday.   

“My hope is that between now and January, we're going to have a successful vaccine, so we can begin to protect the American public from Covid and get this Covid virus behind us,” Redfield said.  

4:13 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

CDC director says he's considering community-based testing strategies

From CNN's Lauren Mascarenhas

A health worker administers a Covid-19 test in Waukee, Iowa, on Tuesday.
A health worker administers a Covid-19 test in Waukee, Iowa, on Tuesday. Charlie Neibergall/AP

Testing everyone in a small community may be one way to get on top of the coronavirus pandemic, Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Tuesday.

“If there’s 10,000 people in the community…what it would take if we just tested all 10,000 – figure out in a three to five day period who's infected, who isn't – and see if that's a strategy that can help bring the outbreak under control in that community?” Redfield said during a JAMA interview.

Experts have said repeatedly that the only way to control the virus will be to test, find new cases, isolate those people and then find people they have been in contact with and quarantine them to stop onward transmission.

“The challenge that we have with traditional public health diagnosis, contact tracing, isolation of course, is the biological nature of this virus being so asymptomatic,” said Redfield. “I think now that it's moved into the younger age group, we probably have over 50% of infections lack symptoms.”

Testing everyone in a community could help health officials find those without symptoms who could be passing along the virus without knowing it. 

Redfield said he’s noticed a trend in Hispanic communities being disproportionately impacted by the virus. 

“Something's going on in the Hispanic community about community transmission that... we don't have our hands around,” he said. 

4:07 p.m. ET, July 14, 2020

Venezuela's capital goes back to total lockdown after rise in new coronavirus cases

From CNN's Stefano Pozzebon in Bogota, Colombia

People line up to buy groceries in Caracas, Venezuela, on Monday.
People line up to buy groceries in Caracas, Venezuela, on Monday. Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images

Venezuela's capital, Caracas, will go back under total lockdown Wednesday, the country's Vice President Delcy Rodríguez announced on Twitter. 

Venezuela started a gradual reopening since early June, but after a rise in new coronavirus cases reported over the last several days, embattled President Nicolás Maduro announced his decision to reimpose a total lockdown on the Capital District and surrounding Miranda state, Rodriguez tweeted Tuesday. 

Venezuela currently has 9,707 confirmed cases of novel coronavirus, according to data collected by Maduro's government. Of those cases, 1,970 were recorded in Caracas and the surrounding Miranda state. 

The Venezuela opposition as well as international organizations have questioned the government's ability to properly track and report Covid-19 cases.