People who are in quarantine or sick with COVID-19 are allowed to vote in person for the U.S. elections on Tuesday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Voters have the right to vote, regardless of whether they are sick or in quarantine,” the CDC’s recently updated guidelines say. But you should let poll workers know that you are sick or in quarantine, the agency said. Voters should also wear a mask, stay 6 feet apart from others and wash their hands before and after voting.
Meanwhile, Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force coordinator, warned top officials on Monday that the country is entering the “most deadly phase of this pandemic … leading to increasing mortality,” according to a report obtained by the Washington Post.
Birx’s warning contradicts President Donald Trump’s message that the U.S. is “rounding the turn” on the coronavirus. The U.S. will likely see more than 100,000 new cases a day this week, Birx said.
Here’s what to know today:
📈 Today’s numbers: The U.S. has reported more than 9.3 million cases and 231,900 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: 47.4 million cases and 1.2 million deaths.
🗺️ Mapping coronavirus: Track the U.S. outbreak in your state.
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The cruise industry has jettisoned hopes of restarting operations this year.
Days after both Carnival and Norwegian extended a halt on cruises through the end of the year, the group that represents cruise lines said Tuesday that its members have agreed to extend the suspension of U.S. sailing operations for the rest of 2020. The announcement comes just days after the U.S. government effectively lifted its no-sail order despite a global spike in coronavirus infections.
Cruise Lines International Association – which includes cruise giants Princess, Carnival and Royal Caribbean – said that its members have voluntarily opted to maintain the current suspension of cruise operations in the U.S. through the end of the year.
Members “will use the remainder of the year to prepare for the implementation of extensive measures to address COVID-19 safety” with the guidance of public health experts and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the association said.
The Big Ten college football game between No. 11 Wisconsin and Purdue has been canceled as COVID-19 positive cases increase around the Badgers’ football program. The game will not be rescheduled and is declared no contest.
This is the second consecutive game cancellation for Wisconsin. The Badgers didn’t play at Nebraska last week. In order to qualify for the Big Ten championship game, teams need to play at least six games during the eight-game regular season.
Wisconsin would have to avoid another cancellation to qualify to play in the title game.
“I share in the disappointment of our student-athletes and staff,” Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez said. “We have seen a level of improvement in our testing numbers, but not enough to give us confidence to resume normal activities and play our game on Saturday.”
– Mike Carmin
The United States reported 586,641 new cases in a week ending Monday, breaking records for the ninth day in a row.
A USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data shows 21 states set records of new cases in a week while five states had a record number of deaths: Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota.
Forty states had more cases in the latest week than in the week before and a higher rate of positive tests, an analysis of COVID Tracking Project data shows.
The world reached 47 million coronavirus cases Tuesday. The last 1 million cases were reported within 57 hours.
Even though nearly 100 million ballots from early voting have already been cast, Americans are still heading to the polls to vote in-person on Election Day despite COVID-19 cases surging in most parts of the country.
Henry Monreal, 75, was the first in line at Fire Station No. 7 in El Paso, Texas. The suffering brought on by COVID-19, in his city and the rest of the country, has motivated him to cast his ballot.
“People are reflecting on the pandemic,” he said. “People are losing their jobs. They need help.”
Immunocompromised Alejandro Guzman Stein, 67, planned to vote by mail this year but returned to his home in Miami last week to find his absentee ballot never arrived.
That’s why he made the trip to the Miami-Dade County Auditorium on Tuesday to cast his vote – a bottle of hand sanitizer in his pocket, a mask over his nose and mouth, a scratched-up visor covering his face. Stein said he took the risk because of a sense of responsibility ingrained in him by his parents.
“This is life or death for me,” he said. “I wanted to vote by mail. But I had to come. It’s more than a right. It’s a duty.”
A polling place in Sebastian, Florida was shut down Tuesday after the elections supervisor’s office learned a person with COVID-19 had walked through the building at some point in the last few days.
– Alan Gomez, USA TODAY and Aaron Bedoya, El Paso Times
Artificial intelligence technology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology can detect virus infection in a COVID-19 patient using a voice recording of their cough, according to a report published Tuesday in the IEEE Open Journal of Engineering in Medicine and Biology.
The technology detected 99.9% of COVID-19 cases in groups of 25 people where five people tested positive, and 95% of groups with three positives. Overall, researchers were able to detect 98.5% COVID-19 positives from a forced-cough recording, including 100% of asymptomatic cases.
The study organized a 1 to 10 ratio of positive cases to control subjects, comprising of 2,660 people who were COVID-19 positive. Participants from all of over the world provided a voice recording of them coughing on an average of three times and filled out a questionnaire about symptoms and diagnosis.
“This non-invasive, free, real-time pre-screening tool my prove to have a great potential to complement current efforts to contain the disease in low-infected areas as well as to mitigate the impact in high-infected areas, where unconscious asymptomatics may spread the virus,” researchers said.
While children represent only 11.1% of all coronavirus cases in the United States, that number is steadily growing, according to a report released Monday by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association. A look at its findings:
Forty-nine states, New York City, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and Guam provided age distributions of reported cases. Texas reported age distribution for only 6% of cases, Massachusetts only reported cases added in the past two weeks, and the state of New York does not provide age distribution.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday said the federal government is requiring states to share residents’ personal information as part of its COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan. But the Democratic governor said he will not take part in the plan as the information can be used to track undocumented immigrants.
“The data use agreement says the information will be used by CDC, HHS, and other federal partners,” Cuomo said during a conference call.
He added, “Why would you possibly need a person’s driver’s license number or Social Security number or passport number before they receive a vaccine? Why? There is no legitimate health reason. This is just another example of them trying to extort the state of New York to get information at DHS and ICE to deport people.”
About three-quarters of the nation’s museums have reopened with precautions designed to stop the spread of the coronavirus. But California is taking a slower approach that some say is overly cautious.
“From what I’m seeing, California is one of the – if not, the most – restrictive,” Laura Lott, president and CEO of American Alliance of Museums, told USA TODAY.
While the focus has been on whether to let theme parks like Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood to reopen, California’s museums are also urging state officials to take a less restrictive approach. They say they can take steps like temperature checks, timed tickets and mandatory mask wearing.
El Paso hospitals reached a record number of COVID-19 patients Monday as intensive care units hit overcapacity, officials said.
The growing hospitalizations occurred amid continuing confusion, debate and legal wrangling over El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego’s ordered shutdown of nonessential businesses.
As of Monday morning, there were 978 people hospitalized for COVID-19, including 273 in intensive care and 234 on ventilators, city-county public health officials said.
Authorities in Sri Lanka on Tuesday announced schools would not resume until Nov. 23 amid a surge in COVID-19 patients in the Columbo and the capital’s suburbs. Schools had been scheduled to reopen on Nov. 9.
Schools were suddenly closed last month as a precautionary measure after a new cluster of coronavirus infections centered on a garment factory erupted in the densely populated Western province, where the capital is. Another cluster centered on the country’s main fish market arose later.
Contributing: The Associated Press