Italy Closes All Nonessential Businesses as Deaths Mount
Italy has closed all nonessential businesses after its coronavirus death toll rose Saturday by 793 to 4,825.
Gaza reported its first two cases of the coronavirus Saturday. Officials say the two, who entered Gaza through Egypt, are in quarantine.
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and his wife, Karen, have both tested negative for the coronavirus, the vice president’s office announced Saturday. The Pences were tested after it was disclosed that someone in Vice President Pence’s office had tested positive for the virus.
US approves rapid test
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted an emergency authorization to Cepheid, a U.S. company that makes the rapid coronavirus tests.
The tests, which produce results in 45 minutes, initially will be made available to hospital and emergency rooms, and then to “patient care settings” such as doctor’s offices. The company plans to begin selling the tests at the end of March.
Millions of Americans were under orders Saturday from their state and local governments to stay home, venturing out only for essential needs, including trips to pharmacies, supermarkets and gas stations, and for solo exercise.
California, New York and New Jersey ordered residents to stay home to help stop the spread of COVID-19, a disease that claims more victims every day. Illinois residents joined in the stay-at-home strategy Saturday afternoon, and officials in Connecticut and Oregon have indicated they soon will impose similar restrictions.
With more than 22,000 confirmed cases in the U.S., at least 20% of the U.S. population will be under orders to remain at home by the end of the weekend, a percentage that is expected to climb.