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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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On Thursday morning, Axios hosted its first virtual event, convening top editorial talent for an in-depth discussion on the coronavirus outbreak.

Axios Co-founder & CEO Jim VandeHei discussed the latest government approval numbers around coronavirus response with Mark Penn, Chairman at The Harris Poll, and the severity of the economic consequences with Axios Media Reporter, Sara Fischer.

  • Sara Fischer on at-risk workers: "Every sector of the economy is going to be touched by this...[What] we need to be thinking about as a country is how can we ensure that not only the wealthy and well-off are the people that are going to be able to get through this? I worry that some of the people in these sectors, people who can't work remotely...I wonder how this is going to impact them."
  • Sara Fischer on the media's duty to the public: "What the data is showing us is that most people are not taking this seriously enough...It's really up to [the media] to make sure that we're telling the story, that we're using data to inform it and that we're doing it to keep the public and keep our readers safe."

Axios Co-founder Mike Allen and Health Care Reporter Caitlin Owens covered efforts to expand testing, enforce quarantines, and the ongoing race to create a vaccine.

  • Caitlin Owens on the trajectory of the mood on Capitol Hill: "What you're seeing now is Congress working on its third package to address the virus. Congress doesn't work together very well these days, so I think that that is just reflective of the urgency of the situation."
  • Caitlin Owens on the current status of hospitals and testing: "The problem is that America's hospitals do not have the beds or the equipment to treat all those people that statistically will need care. And that's why you're seeing kind of triage units being set up outside of hospitals. We need more of that...We're kind of working with without information here, people aren't getting tested. So we don't quite know how bad the problem is going to be."

Thank you, Bank of America for sponsoring this event.

Go deeper

Black Americans are more skeptical of a coronavirus vaccine

Data: KFF; Chart: Axios Visuals

Strikingly large shares of Black Americans say they would be reluctant to get a coronavirus vaccine — even if it was free and had been deemed safe by scientists, according to a new nationwide survey from KFF and The Undefeated.

Why it matters: The findings reflect well-founded distrust of government and health care institutions, and they underscore the need for credible outreach efforts when a vaccine is distributed. Otherwise, distribution could fail to effectively reach the Black community, which has been disproportionately affected by coronavirus.

Reports: CIA finds "Havana Syndrome" unlikely caused by foreign campaign

CIA Director William Burns testifies during a Senate hearing on Capitol Hill last April. Photo: Saul Loeb-Pool/Getty Images

A preliminary CIA report rules out a foreign global campaign as the cause of American and Canadian diplomats affected by a mysterious illness known as "Havana syndrome," per multiple reports.

Why it matters: Some lawmakers had suggested the sometimes debilitating illness was due to directed energy attacks. But CIA officials told the New York Times that most of the 1,000 cases reported to the government could be "explained by environmental causes, undiagnosed medical conditions or stress." This finding has angered some victims, per the NYT.

Jan. 6 panel subpoenas 2 far-right "America First" activists

The House panel investigating the Capitol riot, from left; Reps. Bennie Thompson, Liz Cheney, Adam Kinzinger and Jamie Raskin on Capitol Hill in December. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The House select committee investigating the Capitol riot issued subpoenas Wednesday for far-right leaders Nick Fuentes and Patrick Casey, who allegedly encouraged followers to go to D.C. and challenge the 2020 election results.

Why it matters: The action underscores the panel's increasing focus on rallies held ahead of the Capitol attack and how extremists were drawn to former President Trump's baseless claims of widespread voter fraud, per the New York Times.