Coronavirus updates: 2 Illinois Walmart employees die days apart

Coronavirus outbreak: What you need to know

More than 1.15 million people worldwide -- including more than 290,000 people in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. as hospitals brace for unprecedented patient surges.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here.

>> Coronavirus: Know the facts directly from the CDC

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Live updates for Saturday, April 4, continue below:

2 Illinois Walmart employees die days apart

Update 10:44 p.m. EDT April 4: Two employees at an Illinois Walmart died from the coronavirus days apart from each other.

The employees had not been working at the store in more than a week, the company said Friday, WGN reported.

Their identities were not released.

The store is open. Officials said it has been sanitized and cleaned. It is unclear if other employees at the store have tested positive for the virus.

There are more than 10,300 confirmed cases and 248 deaths in Illinois, The New York Times reported.

1,224 people die in US, most in single day

Update 9:49 p.m. EDT April 4: Health officials reported 1,224 deaths in the U.S. on Saturday, the most in a single day since the coronavirus pandemic began.

The previous day with the most deaths was Friday with 1,094, CNN reported.

There are more than 305,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 8,300 deaths in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins’ virus-tracking site.

Wyoming is the only state that has not yet reported a death.

Nearly 10,000 NYPD, FDNY first responders out sick

Update 8:11 p.m. EDT April 4: Amid increased calls because of the coronavirus, about 1 in 4 Fire Department of New York emergency responding personnel called out sick Friday, the department said.

More than 3,000 emergency medical technicians, paramedics and firefighters called out, WNBC reported.

The FDNY responded to more than 6,500 calls Monday, a spike of more than 500 calls from the day before, WNBC reported.

Officials said they normally get about 4,000 calls a day. More than 400 members of the FDNY have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Other first responders are feeling the effects of the virus too.

One in 6 members of the New York Police Department are out sick or in quarantine, according to The New York Times.

On Thursday, 6,498 members of the force called in sick reporting flu-like symptoms.There are more than 113,000 confirmed cases of the virus in New York state and more than 3,500 deaths.

Queen Elizabeth to address coronavirus in rare television appearance

Update 7:15 p.m. EDT April 4: Queen Elizabeth II is expected to address the coronavirus pandemic in a rare television appearance Sunday.

She recorded the speech Friday, CNN reported. It will be broadcast at 8 p.m. local time.

“I am speaking to you at what I know is an increasingly challenging time. A time of disruption in the life of our country: a disruption that has brought grief to some, financial difficulties to many, and enormous changes to the daily lives of us all,” the queen is expected to say Sunday, CNN reported.

It is the fourth time the queen has made a special address, NBC News reported. The last time was in 2002 following the death of the queen mother. She also spoke on television in 1997 ahead of Princess Diana’s funeral and in 1991 regarding the first Gulf War.

There are more than 42,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and more than 4,300 deaths in the United Kingdom, according to Johns Hopkins’ virus-tracking site.

US cases top 300,000 as death toll passes 8,000 ​​​​​​​

Update 4:56 p.m. EDT April 4: More than 300,000 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in the U.S. as deaths surpassed 8,000 on Saturday afternoon, The New York Times reported.

Health officials believe the number of people infected is much higher.

President Donald Trump said at the Saturday coronavirus task force news conference that “there will be a lot of death” in the coming week, CNN reported.

There are more than 113,000 coronavirus cases and 3,500 deaths in New York state.

Worldwide, more than 1.1 million people have tested positive for the coronavirus and 60,000 people have died.

CDC to begin testing for antibodies

Update 3:08 p.m. EDT April 4: Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said they have begun testing to learn whether people have been previously infected with the coronavirus, The New York Times reported.

The serology tests detect antibodies that the immune system makes in response to the virus, the newspaper reported. Joe Bresee, deputy incident manager of the agency’s COVID-19 response, said testing will focus on people in areas with a high concentration of cases; people in a representative sample of other areas and special groups of people who are likely to have had a higher risk of being exposed to the virus, the Times reported.

The CDC also announced it expanded its online information about the coronavirus, adding a weekly report that will include figures on outpatient and emergency department visits, hospitalizations, deaths and data on testing, according to the Times.

Astros pitcher Justin Verlander donating paychecks

Update 2:11 p.m. EDT April 4: Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander posted a video, including his wife, Kate Upton, on his Instagram page and said he will donate his major league baseball paychecks to different organizations.

“Everyone around the world is affected by this virus, and we hope to contribute to the families and jobs affected, the healthcare workers and first responders on the front lines and the many others in need of basic necessities, medical supplies and support at home.” Verlander said in the video.


New York death toll tops 3,500

Update 1:44 p.m. EDT April 4: The death toll in New York state jumped to 3,565 on Saturday, an increase of 630 from Friday, The New York Times reported. Confirmed cases in New York now stand at 113,704, according to The Washington Post. There are now 290,606 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States and more than 7,700 fatalities.

“By the numbers, we’re not yet at the apex. We’re getting closer,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference. “I want to get to the other side of the apex, and let’s just slide down that mountain.”

Shoe designer Sergio Rossi dies from COVID-19 complications

Update 1:46 p.m. EDT April 4: Legendary women’s shoe designer Sergio Rossi died of complications from coronavirus in northern Italy, hospital officials confirmed. He was 84. An official at the Maurizio Bufalini Hospital in Cesena, confirmed Rossi’s death to CNN but did not provide any other information, including when the designer died.

“Today everyone at Sergio Rossi joins me in remembering our dear Sergio, the inspiring founder of our dream,” Riccardo Sciutto. Sergio Rossi CEO, told Vogue. “Sergio Rossi was a master. His vision and approach will remain our guide in the growth of the brand and the business. He loved women and was able to capture a woman’s femininity in a unique way, creating the perfect extension of a woman’s leg through his shoes. "

UK receives 300 ventilators from China, officials say

Update 1:17 p.m. EDT April 4: Michael Gove, a member of the cabinet in the United Kingdom,has received 300 ventilators from China to aid efforts by the National Health Service to help treat patients who have tested positive for coronavirus, CNN reported.

“We have been buying invasive ventilators from partners abroad, including Germany and Switzerland, and today 300 new ventilators arrived from China,” Gove told reporters Saturday.

Gove also said the government is also working to secure non-invasive ventilators for National Health Service hospitals. One type is a new, clinically approved device developed by University College London, Gove said, adding the college was able to produce 250 devices Friday.

Cuomo says China donating 1,000 ventilators to New York

Update 11:29 a.m. EDT April 4: Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference Saturday that New York will receive 1,140 ventilators from China and Oregon. Cuomo said 1,000 ventilators from China were expected to arrive sometime Saturday at John F. Kennedy International Airport.

“This is a big deal and it’s going to make a significant difference for us. Also, the state of Oregon contacted us and is going to send 140 ventilators,” Cuomo said at the news conference. “Which is I can tell you just astonishing and unexpected. And I want to thank Gov. (Kate) Brown, I want to thank all of the people in the state of Oregon for their thoughtfulness.”

Coral Princess ship docks in Miami with 2 dead, captain says

Update 10:56 a.m. EDT April 4: Two people aboard the Coral Princess cruise ship, which reported 12 positive cases of the coronavirus Thursday, docked in Miami early Saturday and reported that two people died overnight, the Miami Herald reported. The ship’s captain announced the deaths, The Washington Post reported.

The captain did not say whether the two passengers who died were among the confirmed COVID-19 cases but said they were being treated in the ship’s medical center when they passed away, the Post reported, citing a recording of the captain’s announcement.

The announcement was confirmed by Shannon Kilbane, a passenger from California, the Herald reported.

“I know how difficult this news is to bear, but given the current situation, we remain committed to transparent and consistent communication with you,” the captain said in the announcement, according to the Post. “This information will need to be shared with shoreside authorities and will become public, so I wanted you to hear it from me first.”

Global death toll tops 60,000

Update 9:52 a.m. EDT April 4: The worldwide death toll for the coronavirus moved past 60,000 Saturday morning and has infected more than 1.13 million people according to Johns Hopkins University. The United States has more than 270,400 cases and more than 7,100 deaths.

Texas records 100th death

Update 9:46 a.m. EDT April 4: The death toll in Texas from the coronavirus has reached 100 people, the Houston Chronicle reported. The state has more than 6,050 confirmed COVDI-19 cases, the newspaper reported. As of Friday, Houston had 506 cases and eight deaths, while unincorporated Harris County had 519 cases and five deaths, according to the Chronicle.

600 French soldiers test positive

Update 9:29 a.m. EDT April 4: Approximately 600 members of the French military have tested positive for the coronavirus, The Washington Post reported Saturday.

In an interview, France’s Defense Minister Florence Parly told the Le Dauphiné libéré newspaper that the ministry was monitoring the situation “very closely.” Parly said the ability of the army to carry out missions was “not impacted," the Post reported.

AutoNation furloughs 7,000 employees, cuts executives’ pay

Update 9:02 a.m. EDT April 4: AutoNation announced in filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it is furloughing 7,000 employees, cutting the pay of its top executives and imposing a hiring freeze as the auto dealer giant is feeling the economic pinch caused by the coronavirus. The report, filed Thursday, noted that AutoNation cut advertising spending by nearly 50% for the second quarter of 2020. The company also reduced discretionary spending and postponed more than $50 million in capital spending during the second quarter, scoring to the filing.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has adversely impacted, and is expected to continue to adversely impact, AutoNation’s operations,” the company said in the filing.

France becomes 5th nation to surpass China’s total coronavirus count

Update 7:43 a.m. EDT April 4: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus hit 59,884 early Saturday, and the latest surge in cases in France pushed the European nation’s total past that of China, where the illness was first detected in December.

In the four months since the virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, it has infected at least 1,131,713 people worldwide, according to a tally maintained by Johns Hopkins University. Five countries – the United States, Spain, Italy, Germany and France – have now confirmed total infection counts well above China’s 82,526 cases.

• The United States has reported 278,458 cases, resulting in 7,159 deaths.

Spain has confirmed 124,736 cases, resulting in 11,744 deaths.

Italy has reported 119,827 infections, resulting in 14,681 deaths.

Germany has reported 91,159 cases, resulting in 1,275 deaths.

France has confirmed 83,029 infections, resulting in 6,520 deaths.

China has recorded 82,543 cases, resulting in 3,330 deaths.

Iran has recorded 55,743 cases, resulting in 3,452 deaths.

• The United Kingdom has reported 38,697 cases, resulting in 3,611 deaths.

Turkey has recorded 20,921 cases, resulting in 425 deaths.

Switzerland has confirmed 19,702 cases, resulting in 60 deaths.

New York’s first responders union chief calls coronavirus efforts ‘battlefield triage’

Update 5:17 a.m. EDT April 4: An emergency personnel official minced no words when describing the scale and gravity of the toll the novel coronavirus crisis is taking on the city’s first responders and medical personnel.

"We’re in wartime mode,” Michael Greco, vice president of the New York City Fire Department Bureau of Emergency Medical Services union, told CNN.

"If we don’t get a return of circulation, after 20 minutes we are terminating the CPR, and we are not transporting,” Greco told the network.

To date, the state of New York has confirmed 103,060 infections – resulting in 2,935 deaths – or nearly one-third of the total 278,458 U.S. cases. According to a Johns Hopkins University tally, 1,867 of the state’s deaths have occurred within New York City.

Prior to the novel coronavirus pandemic, Greco said he and his fellow paramedics typically witnessed one or two cardiac arrests per week. One New York crew handled seven cardiac arrests on Thursday, alone, Greco told CNN.

“As an EMT (emergency medical technician) or a paramedic, doctors too, and nurses, we all swore oaths to do everything we can to save a life and now we’re making decisions that we were never trained for to handle mentally,” he told the network.

US Attorney General Barr orders release of vulnerable federal inmates to limit coronavirus spread

Update 2:33 a.m. EDT April 4: U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr ordered the release late Friday night of vulnerable inmates to home confinement in a bid to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus in federal prisons.

In a memorandum, obtained by The Washington Post, requested the Federal Bureau of Prisons move elderly inmates and those with preexisting health conditions from Danbury, Connecticut; Oakdale, Louisiana; and Elkton, Ohio.

According to the Post, prison officials have attributed five deaths at Oakdale and two at Elkton to the coronavirus. Meanwhile, Danbury has confirmed nine COVID-19 infections but no deaths.

“I believe strongly we should do everything we can to protect the inmates in our care, but we must do so in a careful and individualized way that remains faithful to our duty to protect the public and the law enforcement officers who protect us all,” Barr wrote.

White House attorney tapped to oversee coronavirus business loans

Update 2:10 a.m. EDT April 4: President Donald Trump nominated a White House attorney late Friday night to oversee distribution of emergency business loans aimed at minimizing the impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Trump nominated Brian D. Miller as special inspector general for pandemic recovery, giving him oversight of a $500 billion emergency relief fund.

Read more here.

SCOTUS cancels April arguments amid coronavirus threat

Update 1:55 a.m. EDT April 4: The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday officially canceled its scheduled oral arguments for April, citing health risks associated with the novel coronavirus pandemic.

According to The Washington Post, about 20 cases are already stalled following the postponement of March arguments, and the justices offered little clarity regarding a timeline for finishing the current term.

“The court will consider rescheduling some cases from the March and April sessions before the end of the term, if circumstances permit in light of public health and safety guidance at that time,” Public Information Officer Kathleen Arberg said in a news release.

US coronavirus deaths hit 7,157, total cases near 278K

Posted 12:55 a.m. EDT April 4: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States approached 278,000 early Saturday morning across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 277,965 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 7,157 deaths. U.S. cases now more than double the 119,827 reported in Italy and the 119,199 confirmed in Spain.

Of the confirmed U.S. deaths, 2,935 – or roughly 40 percent of the nationwide total – have occurred in New York, 646 in New Jersey and 479 in Michigan.

In terms of diagnosed cases, New York remains the hardest hit with at least 103,060 confirmed cases – more than three times the next-closest state – followed by New Jersey with 29,895 and Michigan with 12,744.

Six other states have now confirmed at least 8,000 novel coronavirus cases each, including:

California: 12,399, including 270 deaths

Massachusetts: 10,402, including 192 deaths

Louisiana: 10,297, including 370 deaths

Florida: 10,268, including 170 deaths

Illinois: 8,904, including 210 deaths

Pennsylvania: 8,570, including 102 deaths

Meanwhile, Washington state, Texas and Georgia each has confirmed at least 6,000 novel coronavirus infections; Connecticut, Colorado, Indiana, Ohio and Tennessee each has confirmed at least 3,000 cases; and Maryland, North Carolina, Missouri, Virginia and Wisconsin each has confirmed at least 2,000 cases.