U.S. coronavirus cases top 1,000 as states scramble to curb the spread
A stretcher is moved from an AMR ambulance to the Life Care Center of Kirkland in Washington state. Photo: Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images
The number of cases of the novel coronavirus in the U.S. soared to 1,037 and the death toll to at least 31 by early Wednesday, per data from Johns Hopkins and state health departments.
The big picture: Nearly 40 states had reported cases by Tuesday and at least 12 have declared a state of emergency — Washington, California, New York, Oregon, Kentucky, Maryland, Utah, Colorado, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Florida and Michigan — which reported its first two cases on Tuesday evening.
Coronavirus deaths: Sacramento County Public Health confirmed late Tuesday that an assisted living facility resident in their 90s "has died of complications of COVID-19," taking the number of deaths from the virus in California to three.
- Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) confirmed at a news conference Tuesday the coronavirus had killed another two people, taking the state total to 25. 19 of the 22 deaths in King County, Washington, have occurred at the Life Care Center of Kirkland nursing home.
- New Jersey reported its first COVID-19 death Tuesday. Health officials in Florida have confirmed two deaths in the state.
- Washington can expect to see case numbers soar, according to Inslee. "If we assume there are 1,000 or more people who have the virus today, what the experts are telling us ... [the numbers] will double anywhere from five to eight days," he told the news conference.
- "If there are 1,000 people infected today, in seven or eight weeks, there could be 64,000 people infected in the state of Washington."
- Inslee announced new measures to protect nursing homes and assisted living facilities Tuesday, including visitor restrictions and stringent screenings. He also introduced new protections for workers and businesses, entitling all state employees impacted by COVID-19 to receive additional leave and telework options.
- California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) told a news conference Tuesday evening testing was a priority; 1,075 people had been tested and 7,675 tests were available in 18 processing labs, a 19th lab had just received the tests and the first commercial tests had begun, he said.
- New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced new emergency measures in New Rochelle, where the biggest cluster of cases are in the state, including closing schools and banning large gatherings in the area from Thursday through March 25.
- "NY is partnering with Northwell Health to open a satellite testing facility there," he tweeted.
"We will deploy the National Guard to deliver food to homes & help clean public spaces. ... The State will work with impacted schools to ensure any child who currently depends on food assistance programs will continue to receive those benefits during this 2-week period."
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Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.