January 9 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Brett McKeehan and Kara Fox, CNN

Updated 12:24 AM ET, Sun January 10, 2021
20 Posts
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3:17 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

Pfizer “ready to release millions of doses each day” in response to Biden proposal, says spokeswoman

From CNN Health’s Amanda Sealy

A syringe to be used for the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to be given to French firefighters on January 8, in Avignon, France.
A syringe to be used for the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to be given to French firefighters on January 8, in Avignon, France. Arnold Jerocki/Getty Images

Pfizer is "ready to release millions of doses each day" to meet the plans of the incoming Biden administration, a spokeswoman for the company has said.

"Rest assured that Pfizer is working around the clock to manufacture and is ready to release millions of doses each day, ” said Amy Rose, Vice President of Global Media Relations for Pfizer.

Her comments came in response to whether the company would be ready to meet the demand of the incoming Biden administration’s plan to release all doses of coronavirus vaccines right away.

President-elect Joe Biden will aim to release every available dose of the coronavirus vaccine when he takes office, a break with the Trump administration's strategy of holding back half of US vaccine production to ensure second doses are available. 

The vaccine is given as two doses 21 days apart.

Pfizer’s current contract with the federal government is to supply the US with 200 million doses.

"Pfizer is confident in our ability to deliver 200 million doses of our vaccine to the U.S. government by July 31st. We are committed to collaborating with the Biden Administration on common-sense solutions to the challenges in vaccine distribution so that as many Americans as possible have access to our vaccine as quickly as possible," the company said in a statement on Friday.

The company says it produced 50 million doses last year with 20 million going to the US and began producing those doses in late October.

2:39 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

At least 21,959,850 Covid-19 cases in US; at least 370,082 reported deaths

From CNN's Hollie Silverman

A nurse wearing personal protective equipment works in a Covid-19 intensive care unit at Martin Luther King Jr. Community Hospital on January 6, in the Willowbrook neighborhood of Los Angeles.
A nurse wearing personal protective equipment works in a Covid-19 intensive care unit at Martin Luther King Jr. Community Hospital on January 6, in the Willowbrook neighborhood of Los Angeles. Patrick T. Fallon/AFP/Getty Images

There have been at least 21,959,850 cases of coronavirus in the US, according to Johns Hopkins University's (JHU) tally of cases, and at least 370,082 people have died from coronavirus.  

So far today, JHU has reported 97,077 new cases and 1,309 new deaths.  

Friday saw the second highest number of new Covid-19 cases reported in the US in a single day, according to JHU data. The top five days for new cases were:

  1. January 2, 2021: 301,858
  2. January 8, 2021: 283,204
  3. January 7, 2021: 280,229
  4. January 6, 2021: 249,735
  5. December 18, 2020: 249,524

At least 22,137,350 vaccine doses have been distributed and at least 6,688,231 doses of the vaccine have been administered, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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

CNN is tracking Covid-19 cases and deaths here:

2:22 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

How Florida is failing its most vulnerable seniors with Covid-19 vaccine rollout

From CNN's Rosa Flores and Denise Royal in Miami

A healthcare worker administers a Pfizer-BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine at the John Knox Village Continuing Care Retirement Community on January 6, in Pompano Beach, Florida.
A healthcare worker administers a Pfizer-BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine at the John Knox Village Continuing Care Retirement Community on January 6, in Pompano Beach, Florida. Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Wendy Walsh has gone from frustrated to angry about the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine in Florida. She wants her mom protected, fearing that if the 92-year-old gets the virus, it's essentially a death sentence.

It's like a ticking time bomb -- you're just waiting," Walsh told CNN.

Her mom, Marie Schreiner, lives in an assisted living facility in the Tampa area that recently went into lockdown because of a Covid-19 case. Walsh says she has made hundreds of phone calls to government agencies seeking information about how to get the vaccine but has gotten nowhere.

Like thousands of Floridians desperate for the lifesaving shot for themselves or an elderly loved one, she is left wondering who is in charge and why some of the most vulnerable are still waiting. Florida has recorded more than 1.4 million cases of coronavirus and more than 22,000 deaths since the pandemic began, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. State data shows about 83% of deaths were of people 65 or older.

The Covid-19 vaccine distribution in Florida started out smoothly four weeks ago, with frontline healthcare workers getting the first shots. A week later, seniors living in long-term care facilities began getting the vaccine. That's when Walsh thought her mom would get one.

Read the full story.

2:03 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

CDC working to confirm disinfectants are effective against new Covid-19 variants

From CNN Health’s Lauren Mascarenhas

A man sprays disinfectant on seats inside a waiting room at Mo Chit Bus Terminal in Bangkok on January 6.
A man sprays disinfectant on seats inside a waiting room at Mo Chit Bus Terminal in Bangkok on January 6. Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP/Getty Images

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working to confirm certain disinfectants are effective against new Covid-19 variants, according to a statement on the CDC website.

In a collaboration with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the CDC is looking into whether the disinfectants designated by the EPA for use against Covid-19 still work against new variants of the virus, like those first identified in the UK and South Africa.

The CDC says it will provide updates as new information becomes available.

1:42 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

When will international travel return? Here's what we know right now

From CNN's Marnie Hunter

A digital screen displays flight arrival times at Brisbane Airport on January 7, in Brisbane, Australia.
A digital screen displays flight arrival times at Brisbane Airport on January 7, in Brisbane, Australia. Jono Searle/Getty Images

There's hope: Summer vacations abroad may happen in a big way this year.

The number of people busting out of their countries will start creeping up in late spring and rise higher by mid-year, travel industry experts predict, as vaccines and risk-based safety measures are rolled out more widely and spiking coronavirus cases around the world begin to fall once again.

"I'm actually quite confident that first of May onwards ... we'll all be in a much better world," said Paul Charles, founder and CEO of London-based travel consultancy The PC Agency.

Vaccines and testing are the way forward, Charles and other industry experts say, but what's needed perhaps as desperately is greater consistency and coordination across borders.

Read the full story for the hurdles that travelers and the industry will need to overcome as travel picks up.

1:15 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

New York: 3 new cases of UK Covid-19 strain confirmed

Healthcare workers transport a patient from an ambulance to Maimonides Medical Center, a hospital in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Borough Park, on January 4, 20 in New York City.
Healthcare workers transport a patient from an ambulance to Maimonides Medical Center, a hospital in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Borough Park, on January 4, 20 in New York City. Angela Weiss/AFP/

Three new cases of a coronavirus variant first identified in the United Kingdom have been confirmed in New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo said during a media call Saturday morning.

Two of the new cases are related to the first Covid-19 UK variant case identified last week in Saratoga County, he said.

The other new case is from Nassau County and “appears to be unrelated to the Saratoga case,” Cuomo said, adding the individual from Nassau County is a 64-year-old male from Massapequa, New York.

“The sample was received from a private lab sent to the State Department of Health, which has been doing sampling. That brings the number of UK cases in this country to just about 55,” he said, reiterating he believes the UK strain of the virus is “more widespread than that number would suggest.”

UK variant in the US: At least 63 cases of the variant, first identified in the UK, have been identified in eight US states, according to data posted Friday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

This includes at least 32 cases in California, 22 cases in Florida, three cases in Colorado, two cases in Connecticut, and one case each in Georgia, New York, Texas and Pennsylvania.

While the variant appears to spread more easily, there's no evidence that it's any more deadly or causes more severe disease, according to CDC.

12:51 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

UK coronavirus cases top 3 million, deaths surpass 80,000

From CNN’s Martin Goillandeau in London

Paramedics unload a patient from an ambulance outside the Royal London Hospital in east London on January 8,.
Paramedics unload a patient from an ambulance outside the Royal London Hospital in east London on January 8,. Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images

The UK has become the first country in western Europe to report more than 3 million coronavirus cases, according to government data published on Saturday.

Another 59,937 coronavirus cases have been recorded in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of people who have tested positive for Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic to 3,017,409 in the UK.

The country also reported more than 80,000 coronavirus-related deaths, with 1,035 new deaths added to the total in the past 24 hours. The total number of deaths within 28 days of a positive test now stands at 80,868. Deaths can occur days or even weeks before they are announced and added to the dataset.

Deaths are up 51.3% from the week before, the seven-day average published on Saturday shows, while the number of people testing positive is up 22.1%.

12:28 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

Pope Francis says he is in line to take Covid-19 vaccine

From CNN’s Nicola Ruotolo in Rome and John Allen

Pope Francis holds a thurible as he leads a Christmas Eve mass to mark the nativity of Jesus Christ on December 24, 2020, at St Peter's basilica in the Vatican.
Pope Francis holds a thurible as he leads a Christmas Eve mass to mark the nativity of Jesus Christ on December 24, 2020, at St Peter's basilica in the Vatican. Vincenzo Pinto/AFP/Getty Images

Pope Francis has said the Vatican will begin Covid-19 vaccinations next week and that he is in line to receive the jab.

Pope Francis made the comments during an interview with Italy's Canale 5 channel, set to air on Sunday night.

“It is an ethical duty to take the vaccine, here in the Vatican we will start next week, I am also in line to take it,” he said, according to a news anchor for the channel in a preview of the interview, which was released Saturday.

The full interview, which took place in the Santa Marta residence in the Vatican, will air on Sunday at 2.40 p.m. ET (8.40 p.m. local time), according to a press release.

12:08 p.m. ET, January 9, 2021

Are you a doctor, nurse or medical professional in the UK? Share your thoughts on working through the Covid-19 pandemic.

British health officials are scrambling to cope with the new variant of the virus that was first detected in the UK as it spreads through the public.

A new surge of coronavirus cases, fueled by the more contagious variant, is threatening to overwhelm intensive care units in the capital. Hospitals across the UK are preparing for the worst.

Are you working in a health care setting in the UK? If so, you can share your experiences with us here: