Apr 26, 2020 - Health

Ex-FDA head says Georgia is "jumping the gun" on reopening economy

Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb told CBS News' "Face the Nation" on Sunday that Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp is "jumping the gun" by gradually reopening the state's economy, claiming that the state is "certainly not out of the woods."

Why it matters: The criticism from Gottlieb, who has become a trusted voice in the coronavirus response outside of the government, echoes President Trump's own accusation that Georgia is violating White House guidelines on lifting coronavirus restrictions.

  • Trump said at a press conference on Wednesday that he "strongly" disagrees with Kemp reopening Georgia's nonessential businesses, including close-contact establishments like gyms and barbershops.
  • Gottlieb served as FDA commissioner under Trump until April 2019. He resigned in March 2019, citing his desire to spend more time with his family.

What they're saying:

"Georgia's certainly not out of the woods. They're only testing about 1% of the total population. They have 23,000 cases. They may have plateaued in their epidemic — maybe — but they're still accruing a lot of new cases. ... Georgia's certainly jumping the gun I think here, getting started too early relative to where they are in their epidemic."
— Scott Gottlieb

Go deeper: Stacey Abrams says Trump "incited" Georgia governor into reopening state

Go deeper

Jun 3, 2020 - Health

DeSantis says Florida bars and clubs can reopen this week

Outdoor restaurant in Fort Lauderdale on May 18. Photo: Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Wednesday that bars and clubs will be allowed to reopen on Friday, as the state continues to scale down restrictions it put in place because of the coronavirus, WCTV reports.

Why it matters: DeSantis ordered bars and clubs to close in mid-March as one of the first actions the state took to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

Updated 10 hours ago - Health

U.S. coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios. This graphic includes "probable deaths" that New York City began reporting on April 14.

The Department of Health and Human Services moved on Thursday to require that an individual's race, ethnicity, age and sex be submitted to the agency with novel coronavirus test results.

Why it matters: Some cities and states have reported the virus is killing black people at disproportionately high rates. There are gaps in the national picture of how many people of color are affected, since the data has not been a requirement for states to collect or disclose.

Coronavirus cases spike in Texas, Oregon and Arizona

Data: The COVID Tracking Project, state health departments; Map: Andrew Witherspoon, Sara Wise, Naema Ahmed/Axios

Texas, Arizona and Oregon saw significant spikes last week in new coronavirus infections, while cases also continued to climb in a handful of states where steady increases have become the norm.

Why it matters: Nationwide, new cases have plateaued over the past week. To get through this crisis and safely continue getting back out into the world, we need them to go down — a lot.