July 26 coronavirus news

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11:37 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

Brazilian healthcare union accuses President Bolsonaro of "crimes against humanity"

From CNN's Rodrigo Pedroso in Sao Paulo

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro waves as he takes a ride in Brasilia, on July 25.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro waves as he takes a ride in Brasilia, on July 25. Sergio Lima/AFP/Getty Images

A coalition representing health professionals in Brazil denounced President Jair Bolsonaro for "crimes against humanity" in a judicial complaint to the Hague International Court of Justice.

The document, sent to the attorney general of the International Criminal Court, argues that Bolsonaro committed crimes against humanity by refusing to take necessary measures to protect the public during the pandemic.

The complaint is signed by the Brazilian Union Network UNISaúde, a group of more than a million health workers in the country, supported by unions and international entities.

The public at risk: The coalition accused Bolsonaro of being careless by promoting gatherings of supporters, approaching them without a mask, and advertising medication like hydroxychloroquine that have no scientific proof of effectiveness against Covid-19.

“This attitude of contempt, neglect, negativism, brought disastrous consequences, with a consequent increase in dissemination and total strangulation of health services, which was found without the minimum conditions to provide assistance to the populations. The Brazilian Government's omission characterizes a crime against humanity -- genocide," the complaint reads. 

Marcio Monzane, regional secretary of UNI Americas, a branch of the international union federation UNI Global Union, said in a statement Sunday that the Bolsonaro government should be blamed for “its callous action in the face of the pandemic and for refusing to protect Brazil's health workers as well as the population, which he promised to defend when he became president."

The official response: The President's office said the matter is with the Republic Attorney General's Office (AGU) when CNN requested a comment. The AGU said it will only comment when it receives the subpoena from court.

2:50 a.m. ET, July 27, 2020

Australian state of Victoria records 532 new cases, in worst day of pandemic so far

From CNN's Angus Watson in Sydney

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews speaks to the media on July 27, in Melbourne, Australia.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews speaks to the media on July 27, in Melbourne, Australia. Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

The Australian state of Victoria recorded 532 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, marking the nation's worst day of the pandemic so far, said Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews on Monday.

Victoria also recorded six fatalities in the past day, raising the state's death toll to 77 and the national death toll to 161.

Three weeks of lockdown: Victoria has seen high case numbers persist for weeks, despite metropolitan Melbourne and neighboring Mitchell Shire being halfway through a six-week-long lockdown order.

The major driver of these new cases is people going to work while sick, said Andrews. 

"The ultimate consequence, if people are going to work sick, is that people will become infected and therefore people will die," Andrews said.

Aged care facility outbreak: There are also outbreaks across multiple aged care facilities, with 683 residents and staff testing positive so far. 

“The residents in these facilities will be people, parents, grandparents, great grandparents, and they are at significant risk of dying -- that is an inescapable fact,” said Victoria’s Chief Health Officer Professor Brett Sutton on Monday.

This post has been updated to accurately reflect the number of new cases.

10:56 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

Texas coronavirus death toll surpasses 5,000

From CNN's Jennifer Selva in Los Angeles

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses.
This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The coronavirus death toll in Texas surpassed 5,000 on Sunday, according to the Texas Department of State and Health Services. 

The state reported 153 new Covid-19 deaths on Sunday, raising the total death toll to 5,038.

Texas also reported 5,810 new infections, bringing the total number of cases so far to 381,656. 

There are currently 10,075 people still hospitalized in the state, according to the DSHS.

10:12 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

White House pushes to scale back coronavirus relief stimulus

From CNN's Phil Mattingly and Manu Raju

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin leaves a Republican policy lunch on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on July 21.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin leaves a Republican policy lunch on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on July 21. Olivier Douliery/AFP/Getty Images

Top White House negotiators are pushing to scale back the next coronavirus relief legislation, just one day before Senate Republicans plan to release their $1 trillion proposal.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows both mentioned the possibility of moving forward on a less ambitious proposal initially Sunday in television show appearances, and multiple aides told CNN that it has become a leading option in discussions between the administration officials and Senate Republicans in recent days.

"Honestly, I see us being able to provide unemployment insurance, maybe a retention credit to keep people from being displaced or brought back into the workplace, helping with our schools," Meadows said Sunday on ABC's "This Week."
"If we can do that along with liability protection, perhaps we put that forward and get that passed as we can negotiate on the rest of the bill in the weeks to come."

Bipartisan negotiations: The consideration of scaling back efforts before Republicans even put an offer on the table underscores just how difficult the coming bipartisan negotiations are expected to be. One of the primary reasons administration officials are considering a less ambitious effort is due to the initial meeting between Meadows and Mnuchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer last week, according to multiple officials.

"They came away from that significantly less optimistic that something can get done," said one administration official.

What might be in the package: A scaled-back proposal would focus primarily on deadline issues -- like the unemployment benefits that expire at the end of July, as well as education funding just weeks before schools are set to open. Should Republicans decide to pursue the idea, it may also be used to put pressure on Democrats in advance of the unemployment benefit deadline.

Read the full story:

9:18 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

Mexico reports more than 46,000 coronavirus cases and 4,500 deaths in one week

From CNN's Karol Suarez in Mexico City

Churchgoers keep social distancing during the first mass in the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City, on July 26.
Churchgoers keep social distancing during the first mass in the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City, on July 26. Claudio Cruz/AFP/Getty Images

Mexico has reported 46,273 new coronavirus cases in the past seven days alone, according to a CNN tally of data from the Mexican health ministry.

The country also reported 4,506 related deaths in the same week.

Mexico has now recorded a total of 390,516 cases and 43,680 deaths.

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has said that the high numbers are due to "increased testing and a delay of the information," though Mexico has one of the lowest testing rates of any large country worldwide.

8:01 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations in California continue to climb

From CNN's Jennifer Selva

A medical worker adjusts her personal protective equipment at an antibody rapid serological testing site on July 26, in San Dimas, California.
A medical worker adjusts her personal protective equipment at an antibody rapid serological testing site on July 26, in San Dimas, California. Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

The number of Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations in California continue to rise, according to a press release from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH).

The CDPH reports the seven day average number of new cases is 9,852, up from last week’s average of 9,127.

There are currently 6,912 people in the hospital with confirmed Covid-19 cases, and 1,993 of those are in the ICU.

So far, 8,146 people have died in the state, according to the CDPH.

As of Sunday, 36 counties are on the state's watch list and have been ordered to close many of their indoor operations.

7:28 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

Vermont school superintendent pens letter detailing frustration with making plans to reopen schools

From CNN's Laura Ly

The superintendent of a public school district in Vermont wrote an open letter to her community detailing her frustration with trying to establish plans for safely and realistically reopening schools this fall, particularly because of a lack of state involvement and looming fears over a lack of staffing.

In most places, I think we are going to try to reopen school, and I think we will fail in ways that may have permanent, unrecoverable repercussions for our students, school systems, and community," said Brigid Nease, superintendent of the Harwood Union School District.

Nease wrote in the lengthy letter she and fellow superintendents across the state “truly cannot sleep at night” because trying to put together potential reopening plans has been all-consuming. Nease wrote that reopening plans across the state have vast differences because state authorities only provided districts with health and safety guidance.

The truth is most school employees are scared to death they will get sick (or worse), bring the virus home to loved ones, have a student in their care become ill, or experience the death of a coworker," she wrote

Nease concluded the letter writing that fears over a lack of available staff due to disparate reopening plans across the state and general Covid-19 concerns are significant and that schools need proper intervention and solutions on a bigger, statewide-level.

"School districts across the state all have published plans that they cannot guarantee they can staff, and even if by some miracle one can, it is highly unlikely they will be able to sustain it," Nease said. "Childcare for all families AND school employees is a huge problem that crosses many district geographical boundaries. This is a significant statewide problem in need of a significant statewide solution made by those that have the authority to do so, at the top of the food chain, not individual community administrators and local school boards."
6:45 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

Brazil tops 2.4 million coronavirus cases five months after first reported case

From journalist Rodrigo Pedroso in Sao Paulo

Brazil's health ministry reported 24,578 newly confirmed Covid-19 cases Sunday, bringing the country's total to 2,419,091.

The ministry also reported 555 new deaths from the virus, bringing Brazil's death toll to 87,004.

Sunday marks five months since Brazil reported its first confirmed case of the novel coronavirus on February 26.

This comes after Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tested negative for the virus Saturday, his first negative test since testing positive July 7.

The Brazilian Society of Infectious Diseases later said Bolsonaro set a “bad example” by socializing and not wearing a mask right after his negative Covid-19 test announcement.

5:56 p.m. ET, July 26, 2020

South Africa’s coronavirus cases continue to spike, as 11,233 new cases reported

From CNN’s Dana Ford 

South Africa’s health ministry reported 11,233 new cases of coronavirus Sunday, bringing the country’s total confirmed case count to 445,433.

The number of people who have officially died from coronavirus in the country is 6,769, according to Health Minister Zweli Mkhize, who posted the figures on Twitter.

Last week, officials from the World Health Organization expressed concern the country’s rising numbers could signal greater Covid-19 spread throughout Africa. South Africa has the highest number of confirmed cases in Africa and the fifth highest number worldwide, following the United States, Brazil, India and Russia.