Situational awareness: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services last night issued new guidance that expands the kinds of masks health care workers can use to treat coronavirus patients, which will help alleviate supply issues.
Today's word count is 987, or a 4-minute read.
It may be counterintuitive, but it's actually better if the novel coronavirus outbreak lasts awhile in the U.S., public health experts say.
Between the lines: If everyone who is going to get sick does so at once, it would overwhelm the health care system, putting all of us — not just those with the coronavirus — at risk.
Details: There are only so many hospital beds in the U.S., and around 70–75% of them are occupied at any given time, Jha said.
The good news: That's why public health officials keep talking about social distancing — it can prevent this bottleneck effect.
The bottom line: The coronavirus may affect our daily lives for a long time — and that may be a good thing.
Go deeper: How to beat back the coronavirus
Speaking of social distancing — we're already doing a lot of it.
Driving the news: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced yesterday the creation of a "containment zone" around a synagogue in a New York City suburb. Schools and large gathering facilities will be closed for two weeks, Axios' Marisa Fernandez reports.
Several universities have canceled in-person classes, and some have told students to leave campus altogether.
Google recommended Tuesday that all its employees in North America work from home until at least April, Axios' Ina Fried writes.
And on the 2020 campaign trail, former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders both canceled campaign rallies in Cleveland last night.
A U.K. health minister has coronavirus, the BBC reports.
Diagnostic testing for the coronavirus is threatened yet again, this time by a shortage of critical lab materials, Politico reports.
Why it matters: The testing capabilities in the U.S. are still grossly behind those of other countries. This latest problem could set us even further back, allowing the coronavirus to continue to spread undetected through communities.
Details: U.S. labs may not have enough of the supplies used to extract generic material from any virus in a patient's sample, which is a key part of the test.
What's next: CDC director Robert Redfield told Politico that he didn't know how the agency would deal with a shortage of the kits.
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
President Trump and his advisers left a meeting with Senate Republicans yesterday without appearing to make much progress on a plan to help cushion coronavirus' economic fallout.
A handful of companies, including Darden Restaurants, Uber, Lyft and Instacart, have responded to one of the most serious economic threats, and begun offering some paid sick leave to their workers.
A federal recommendation to restrict nursing home visitors is a reminder that some groups of people are more susceptible to catch the new coronavirus, Axios' Bob Herman writes.
The bottom line: Adults aged 60 and older, people who have underlying health problems, people who have compromised immune systems and health care workers have higher chances of getting sick and dying, and should take extra precautions.
State of play: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization have said older adults and people who have chronic conditions like heart and lung disease face higher risks of getting seriously ill from COVID-19.
The intrigue: People who have immune system conditions don't always register fevers, one of the main symptoms of the coronavirus, and that's raising concerns that some are not getting the necessary testing.
The Grand Princess docked in San Francisco. Photo: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images
If you are like me and have been wondering who in the world is still buying and boarding cruises, then I have good news — the Daily Beast has interviewed some of them, and almost every line is worthy of your time (if you love gallows humor).
Between the lines: Cruise ships may be a perceived by most of America as coronavirus playgrounds, but their low price tags are proving too hard to resist for some.
The bottom line: "It's a touch of youthful hubris with a dash of a gambler's high, all dropped into the milieu of a global medical crisis," the Daily Beast's Sam Stein writes.