November 4 coronavirus news

By Nectar Gan, Steve George, Zamira Rahim, Lauren Kent, Ed Upright, Rob Picheta and Hira Humayun, CNN

Updated 1:01 AM ET, Thu November 5, 2020
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12:27 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020

California election worker tests positive for Covid-19, contact tracing efforts underway

From CNN's Alexandra Meeks 

An election worker in San Joaquin County in the US state of California tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday, the San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters of the state said in a statement.

"An election worker from an Escalon Voter Service Center located at the Escalon Community Center tested positive for Covid-19," said Registrar of Voters Melinda Dubroff. "We do not know at this time when or where this individual was originally exposed to the virus."

The positive case was reported at 6:15a.m. PT Tuesday, according to Dubroff. Prior to the election worker testing positive, about 50 people dropped off their ballot at this particular voting center and approximately 200 people voted in-person inside the facility over the past three days, Dubroff said. 

While this particular voting center has been open since Saturday, it is unclear to what extent the infected election worker was in contact with voters.

Dubroff said the center had followed all public health protocols recommended by the country's Public Health Department, such as wearing masks, gloves, face shields and observing social distancing.

Contact tracing underway: All 16 staff members who were working at the Escalon Community Center this morning are now in quarantine and were replaced with new election workers, Dubroff said. The facility underwent a deep cleaning, and contact tracing has begun in coordination with county health officials. The facility later reopened.

San Joaquin County has approximately 334,000 registered voters of an estimated population of 455,000 eligible voters, according to the Registrar. County data shows San Joaquin has leaned Democratic in the previous three presidential elections.

12:22 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020

China's Xinjiang reports surge in Covid-19 infections, conducts new round of mass testing

From CNN's Beijing bureau and Eric Cheung in Hong Kong

China's far western region of Xinjiang reported 118 people who tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday, according to the Xinjiang Information Office.

Among them, two have shown symptoms and 116 are asymptomatic. China does not include asymptomatic carriers of the virus in the official tally of confirmed cases.

The new cases were reported in Shufu county in Kashgar prefecture in the region's south, where a new outbreak surfaced late last month.

Officials said in a press conference on Tuesday night that the 116 asymptomatic cases were identified among those who were already under quarantine or medical observation, while the two confirmed cases had developed symptoms after being identified earlier as asymptomatic cases.

In response to the new cases, Xinjiang will launch a new round of mass testing in Shufu county starting on Wednesday, according to authorities.

In late October, Kashgar launched a citywide testing drive for its 4.7 million residents, after a single asymptomatic case was reported.

As of Tuesday evening, Xinjiang has reported 64 symptomatic cases and 345 asymptomatic cases in the latest outbreak.

2:25 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020

India’s capital records highest daily surge in Covid-19 cases 

From CNN's Swati Gupta in Delhi

A health worker in PPE coveralls collects a swab sample from behind a protective screen for coronavirus testing, at Khajur Khas in New Delhi, India, on October 28.
A health worker in PPE coveralls collects a swab sample from behind a protective screen for coronavirus testing, at Khajur Khas in New Delhi, India, on October 28. Sanchit Khanna/Hindustan Times/Getty Images

The Indian capital of New Delhi reported 6,725 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, the highest single-day rise since the pandemic began, according to the city's health department. 

Delhi's total caseload now stands at 403,096, with 6,652 deaths. Around 360,000 people have recovered, the health department said.

Going against the national trend: The city's new high in daily infections comes amid a decline in new cases nationwide.

India registered 46,253 new Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the country’s total to 8.31 million, the Ministry of Health said Wednesday. A total of 123,611 deaths have so far been reported across the country. 

More than 112 million tests have been conducted across the country, according the Indian Council of Medical Research.

2:18 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020

Covid-19 hospitalizations top 50,000 in the US

From CNN’s Arman Azad

A medical staff member treats a patient suffering from Covid-19 at the United Memorial Medical Center (UMMC) in Houston, on October 31.
A medical staff member treats a patient suffering from Covid-19 at the United Memorial Medical Center (UMMC) in Houston, on October 31. Go Nakamura/Getty Images

Active Covid-19 hospitalizations in the United States reached 50,340 on Tuesday, according to the Covid Tracking Project (CTP). 

CTP noted on Twitter that hospitalizations in the Midwest are sharply rising. “In the region there are 238 people currently hospitalized per million people,” it said.

More than 480,000 coronavirus patients have been hospitalized thus far in the US, according to CTP. Active Covid-19 hospitalizations approached 60,000 during earlier peaks in the spring and summer.

Estimates from the US Department of Health and Human Services put the number of Covid-19 patients in US hospitals at 52,609 as of Tuesday, even higher than the CTP.

According to HHS, more than 70% of inpatient hospital beds in the US are currently filled. About 10.5% of those hospitalizations are Covid-19 patients.

 

11:48 p.m. ET, November 3, 2020

Montana reports third-highest day for new coronavirus cases since pandemic began

From CNN's Kay Jones

The US state of Montana reported its third-highest day for new coronavirus cases since the pandemic began on Tuesday, according to the state's dashboard.

Tuesday's dashboard showed that 909 new cases were reported, with 35,159 cases reported since the pandemic began. The state recorded its highest number of cases in a single day last week. 

Montana Department of Health says that there are now 399 total deaths, up 13 since Monday's report. 

The hospital occupancy report shows that 389 patients are hospitalized with the virus statewide, with 79 of those patients in intensive care.

 

11:04 p.m. ET, November 3, 2020

New Mexico records highest number of new Covid-19 cases

From CNN's Kay Jones

New Mexico's Department of Health recorded its highest number of daily new Covid-19 cases on Tuesday according to the US state's dashboard and the Johns Hopkins University Covid Tracking Project.

With 1,141 new cases, this is the third time the southwestern state has reported over 1,000 new cases since Thursday.

There are now 49,240 cases statewide since the start of the pandemic and 1,045 deaths.

There are 401 patients hospitalized with the virus, but the health department notes that the figure includes residents of other states who may have been hospitalized in state. It also says the number of hospitalizations does not include New Mexicans who have been transferred to hospitals in other states. 

The number of patients in hospital care is the most since the pandemic began, according to the state's dashboard. 

NOTE: These numbers were released by the New Mexico Department of Health and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.

2:12 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020

Wearing masks could save 130,000 US lives by March, NIH director says

From CNN Health’s Lauren Mascarenhas

Dr. Francis Collins, Director of the National Institutes of Health, listens during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing in Washington, DC, on September 9.
Dr. Francis Collins, Director of the National Institutes of Health, listens during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing in Washington, DC, on September 9. Michael Reynolds- Pool/Getty Images

More than 130,000 US lives could be saved by March if most Americans wore masks, said Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, in a blog post on Tuesday.

“If most Americans pulled together to do the right thing and wore a mask in public, this simple, selfless act would save more than 130,000 lives in the next few months alone,” Collins wrote.

Collins said only about half of Americans wear a mask in public, citing a study by the team responsible for the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation coronavirus model. The team predicts that Covid-19 deaths could surpass 1 million in the US by the end of February on this trajectory.

He noted that an increase in mask use would also help the economy, by preventing the need for another lockdown. 

“Think about it in the same way you think about putting on your seat belt -- a minor inconvenience that can save lives,” Collins wrote.

2:08 a.m. ET, November 4, 2020

WHO reports 46 million global Covid-19 cases, with a growing proportion among young people

From CNN Health’s Lauren Mascarenhas

The World Health Organization (WHO) is seen at their headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, on August 17.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is seen at their headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, on August 17. Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

As of November 1, there have been 46 million coronavirus cases and 1.2 million deaths globally, according to the World Health Organization’s weekly Covid-19 update.

An age and gender analysis shows younger people account for more coronavirus cases over the course of the pandemic, with the proportion of cases among 15- to 24-year-olds increasing from 4% in the beginning stages of the pandemic to 14% more recently, and from 50% to 65% among 25- to 64-year-olds. Among those 65 and older, the proportion of cases decreased from 40% to 15%.

The WHO also notes increasing reports of long-term effects of coronavirus, including among younger people.

While the trend in cases is shifting among age groups, older people remain the most vulnerable to illness and death from Covid-19.

Background: As CNN previously reported, the median age of people diagnosed with coronavirus keeps getting lower. In May, the median age of confirmed cases was 46. By July, that number had dropped to 37.

According to a September report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), by August, 1 of every 5 confirmed cases in the US is a person in their 20s, and from June to August, Covid-19 incidence was highest in people ages 20 to 29.