Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Coronavirus hotspots have seen a surge of new infections in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.

Why it matters: Older and sicker people are at much higher risk for serious illness and death, and are at risk from these growing outbreaks despite efforts to protect elder-care facilities.

The big picture: One of the dominant narratives about the Sunbelt surge in new cases is that the infected population is younger, and therefore at less risk. But that’s not the whole story.

By the numbers: Over a 14 day-period ending July 10, new cases in long-term care facilities rose by 18 percent across the 23 hotspot states for which data are available.

  • Florida led the way with a 51% increase, and Texas saw a 47% increase within long-term care facilities. California's long-term care facilities experienced a 23% increase in new infections.
  • Arizona did not report this data.

These spikes almost certainly reflect significant community spread, as well as shortages of protective equipment within the facilities.

The bottom line: The lesson for long-term care facilities may be the same as the lesson for schools: There is no way to get a handle on coronavirus in one setting without first controlling community spread overall.

  • The data suggest that when the virus is spreading widely among younger people in fitness centers, or bars, or house parties, it’s going to find its way to older and more vulnerable people.

Go deeper

Updated 11 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

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Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

A coalition of 156 countries agreed Monday to a "landmark" agreement aimed at the fair distribution of COVID-19 vaccines around the globe, the World Health Organization announced Monday.

The big picture: 64 higher-income countries, including European Union members, are among the signatories to the deal, known as "COVAX." The U.S. is not participating in the scheme.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 31,346,086 — Total deaths: 965,294— Total recoveries: 21,518,790Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 6,858,130 — Total deaths: 199,890 — Total recoveries: 2,615,949 — Total tests: 95,841,281Map.
  3. Health: CDC says it mistakenly published guidance about COVID-19 spreading through air.
  4. Media: Conservative blogger who spread COVID-19 misinformation worked for Fauci's agency.
  5. Politics: House Democrats file legislation to fund government through Dec. 11.
  6. World: U.K. upgrades COVID alert level as Europe sees worrying rise in infections — "The Wake-Up Call" warns the West about the consequences of mishandling a pandemic.
Sep 20, 2020 - Health

Ex-FDA chief: Career scientists won't be "easily cowed" by political vaccine pressure

The career scientists involved in the approval process will not be swayed by politics, former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb said on CBS' "Face the Nation" Sunday.

Why it matters: Gottlieb's comments come amid fears that the Trump administration has politicized the coronavirus response and is seeking rapid approval and distribution of a vaccine.

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