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    Manifest Distillery in downtown Jacksonville is joining others to produce hand sanitizer for workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic. The batch is specifically meant to benefit the City of Jacksonville’s testing site at the Prime F. Osborn III Convention Center The distillery is collaborating with Telescope Health on this project. By doing this, it allows the local company to keep its workers on the payroll. “Everything that we’re making now and at least foreseeable future will be prioritized to basically the front line health care workers,” said David Cohen, head distiller at Manifest. A local distillery is distributing ‘homemade’ hand sanitizer to the Prime Osborne testing site today. The partnership is helping both local health care works stay safe and local employees keep their jobs @ActionNewsJax pic.twitter.com/DNvrSEabg4 — Meghan Moriarty (@MeghanANjax) March 28, 2020 For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world The company donated 2,000 small bottles of the homemade hand sanitizer to the Prime Osborn testing site on Saturday. The Prime Osborn is one of two COVID-19 testing sites in Jacksonville; the other is located at Lot J outside TIAA Bank Field. “This is an amazing surplus of supplies to keep the people who work at those tent sites safe,” said Dr. Matthew Thompson with Telehealth. The Prime Osborn testing site is now free for first responders, medical personnel and those with symptoms as of Friday. “The tent testing site is going extremely well right now,” Thompson said. “Today [Saturday] we should surpass 1,000 tests.” Manifest said it plans to continue producing hand sanitizer for as long as its needed. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • Governor Ron DeSantis says the state is stepping up enforcement of social distancing on Florida’s waterways. This word comes after many complaints about crowd sizes on boats. Some boaters are worried that a few people not taking the rules seriously could ruin it for everyone else. “What they are doing is tying all of these boats together and having large group parties. I’m directing FWC to issue an emergency order to enforce the social distancing rules on the waterways,” DeSantis said in a news conference Friday. For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world Although the governor has chosen not to lock down the state to contain the virus, he said the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission received reports that boaters are violating social-distancing requirements. “I’m going out with my roommate Troy on the boat, go cruising around, just moved to Jacksonville,” said Kendrick Holsten. But for boaters like Holsten, getting out safely two or three times a week is the only way to free his mind. “Be careful, wash your hands, enjoy your life and try to make the most out of this situation,” Holsten said. Action News Jax spotted dozens of boaters at Mike Mccue park and boat ramp Friday afternoon. Some boaters who asked not to be on camera told Action News Jax reporter Jamarlo Phillips the boating community has been good about keeping distance during the outbreak. “You don’t want things to be worse than they are now. Right now you can still go to the grocery store, gas station and still come out here. If more people start getting sick, more things will start shutting down. It’s not good for anybody,” Holsten said. On average, positive COVID-19 cases have been doubling every three days in Florida, according to the Florida Department of Health. DeSantis says by enforcing social distancing, the numbers could keep from climbing higher. “Having close contact with people or being in large crowds, I mean those are the two ways you can most likely transmit or contract the virus, so we can’t be having these large crowds,” said DeSantis. Action News Jax is working to learn the penalties a boater could face if they don’t follow social distancing rules. FWC says their focus has been safe boating. They also encourage you to use the guidelines from the Department of Health and CDC about social distancing. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • It’s been nearly two weeks since social distancing restrictions were put in place here in Florida and our local restaurants continue to feel the hurt. “All of our shifts have been pretty much canceled. We’ve lost a lot of catering gigs like weddings and baby showers that we had booked,” said Ashley Amin, owner of Fusion Food Truck. And with nearly every local restaurant in the same situation as Amin’s, Jacksonville Restaurant Reviews came up with an idea to help them out during this tough time. They have started virtual cooking classes taught by local chefs like Amin. For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world “This is great, what Jacksonville Restaurant Review is doing for all the chefs here in Jacksonville, putting a virtual class where people can buy tickets and cook with us.” It’s a way for families to stay in the comfort of their own homes, practice social distancing, and learn a thing or two about cooking along the way. “We have to keep going. We have to pay our bills, so we need everyone’s support right now,” Amin said. To sign up for upcoming virtual cooking classes head to JaxRestaurantReviews.com and click on the virtual cooking classes tab.​ STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • Dr. Sunil Joshi of Family Allergy and Asthma Consultants, recommends the following when bringing in outside food to your home: Wash your hands. Order hot foods when possible. The warmer the food, the less likely any virus is to survive. Warm up the food once you receive it. Take the food out of the container, and put it on to your own plate. Use your own silverware. It should be noted that the Food and Drug Administration says there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with the spread of COVID-19: “Currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads. CDC notes that in general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from food products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient, refrigerated, or frozen temperatures. It is more likely that a person will be exposed by person-to-person transmission involving close contact with someone who is ill or shedding the virus.” STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • Help at the city level could soon be on the way for small businesses in Jacksonville. The coronavirus pandemic is taking a big bite out of the bottom line for many small businesses. The restaurant, hospitality and tourism industries are among the hardest hit. The president of the JAX Chamber, Daniel Davis, said it’s too soon to know exactly what the impact is, but we should know more in a month. For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world “We conducted a survey of our chamber membership and got significant response rates. We will be releasing that survey to the public and to elected officials to let them know what our members, what small businesses, need,” said Davis. In the mean time, Davis said much of the chamber’s focus will be to make sure that its members understand how to navigate their federal stimulus relief. Mayor Curry, a former business owner himself, said the city will help too. The plan isn’t finalized, but he said this during a Thursday virtual news conference when asked if it’ll include direct payment to businesses: “The concept that we have at this point I believe that’s a very high possibility.” Action News Jax also spoke with the mayor’s chief administrative officer, Brian Hughes, who said that helping businesses will in turn help individuals keep their job. The question is: what can the city afford to do? We’ll learn more about that next week. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • Action News Jax Investigates why as many as tens of thousands of special needs children from military families aren’t getting the care they need due to COVID-19. Families tell Action News Jax that Tricare isn’t covering telehealth for behavioral therapy, which the children would normally get at school in-person. Families said Tricare will cover their visit to a clinic or having someone come to their home for the therapy. But, these families said that goes against what we’re being advised of right now with social distancing and instructions to stay home, if possible. For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world They also said many of these children can’t necessarily verbalize if they started showing symptoms. The family of Logan Howell, 11, said he has autism and is verbally and cognitively delayed. He attends the Jacksonville School for Autism and relies on applied behavioral analysis, or ABA, therapy. “When my child started JSA, he could speak five words,” Logan’s mother, Ashley Lucas said. “Now he speaks in sentences.” Lucas and her husband are in the military and rely on Tricare. She said now that school is closed, Logan has gone without ABA, and Tricare won’t pay for telehealth. She said out of pocket it can cost upward of $200 per hour. It’s why Kim Lucker-Greene, a board-certified behavior analyst, has volunteered her services in the short term to these military families not being covered. “We are addressing very serious behavioral issues,” Lucker-Greene said. “Oftentimes, it could be severe physical aggression that these children engage in, as well as self-injury.” Humana Military handles Tricare benefits for the eastern United States. As of Friday, their website stated, “Telemedicine is not being covered for ABA services.” Lucas said it leaves some of the most vulnerable among us to suffer. “Every major insurance company currently is covering telemedicine for ABA therapy,” Lucas said. “Tricare is the only major insurance company that has held out and is not giving us the resources we need during this time.” Action News Jax has reached out to Tricare and Humana Military and is awaiting their response. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • Crime in Jacksonville is increasing right along with the number of coronavirus cases. Sheriff Mike Williams says crime is up 4 percent. Action News Jax reporter Beth Rousseau says state law enforcement officers are locking up less people even though we’re seeing more shootings. Friday’s shooting on Leon Road is one of more than seven that have happened since Thursday in Jacksonville. Local residents say crime is the last thing we need as the coronavirus spreads. COVID-19 is constantly on Tom Capurso’s mind. For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world “It’s scary. You wonder what’s going on,” he said. He said police cars swarming the building across the road from his work Friday morning only added to his anxiety. Investigators tell Action News Jax a road rage incident on Beach Boulevard ended when a man was shot on Leon Road. That man is expected to be OK. “I mean, we rarely see one or two, let alone a whole bunch of them. It’s kind of scary with everything else that’s going on,” Capurso said. Capurso isn’t surprised crime is up. Action News Jax has been tracking the number of shootings in the city since the start of March – there have been 42, which have caused the death of 11 people. Seven of those shootings happened in the last 48 hours. “You can understand that. People are scared, they’re nervous, they don’t know what’s going to happen,” Capurso said. State law enforcement officers tell us they’re actually locking up fewer people and releasing some nonviolent offenders to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 throughout the criminal justice system. Capurso said now is the time for positive thinking and patience. “The sun is going to rise tomorrow and we’re going to be OK. We need to just hang in there together,” Capurso said. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • Action News Jax spoke one-on-one with a doctor from Baptist MD Anderson Cancer Center about the risks patients face and how they can stay healthy during this difficult time. Tiffany McRee was diagnosed with breast cancer while she was pregnant with her now 3-year-old son. She said it was a scary experience to go through when she felt that her life had just started. Now, almost three years after her chemotherapy, she is considered a cancer survivor. For live updates on the coronavirus, click here . RELATED:  Florida coronavirus cases | Georgia coronavirus cases | Symptoms | How to stay healthy |  Interactive map: Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard  | Interactive Map: Coronavirus cases around the world Amid COVID-19 outbreaks, she weighs in on social distancing and staying healthy. She said a lot of the warnings to people are the same warnings that cancer patients, going through chemo, have on a daily basis. Dr. Jennifer Crozier with Baptist MD Anderson Cancer Center said patients undergoing cancer treatments are at a higher risk for having trouble fighting off the infection because their immune system is weakened. In addition to practicing social distancing, avoiding big crowds and diligent hand washing -- she’s also encouraging people with weak immune systems to eat lots of vegetables, get 8 hours of sleep, get fresh air and sometimes unplug from social media. “We are screening everyone who is coming in the building -- checking for any symptoms consistent with COVID, or if they’re having a fever,' Dr. Crozier said regarding the cancer center’s policies. “As far as right now all of our treatments are ongoing. We are trying to keep our protective equipment by not having elective surgeries or elective procedures.“ STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • A local father has made at least 30 3-D printed face shields for health care workers and plans to continue making them until he runs out of supplies. Hospitals are asking for supplies as they begin to run low. A Jacksonville father is using his 3D printer to help make face shields for healthcare workers. Sachin Patel has made more than 30 face shields and said he plans to continue making them until he runs out of supplies. Patel said each face shield takes about 3 hours to make. Watch Christy Turner’s full story about Patel above. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories

The Latest News Headlines

  • Instacart employees are planning to strike Monday over fears that they are exposing themselves to risk of the coronavirus and are not being adequately protected or compensated by their company. “Instacart has a well established history of exploiting its Shoppers, one that extends years back before our current crisis,” Instacart employees and Gig Workers Collective, an activist organization, wrote in a letter posted on Medium. “Now, its mistreatment of Shoppers has stooped to an all-time low. They are profiting astronomically off of us literally risking our lives, all while refusing to provide us with effective protection, meaningful pay, and meaningful benefits.” Employees are asking for an additional $5 on each order and personal protection equipment provided at no cost, including hand sanitizer and disinfectant sprays. It not unclear how many employees would participate. More than 200,000 people work as shoppers for the company, The New York Times reported. The company had plans to hire thousands more amid demand for delivery while people are quarantined and isolating. Instacart announced earlier this week new safety guidelines and said it would increase bonuses for its shoppers and extend sick and quarantine pay. “The health and safety of our entire community – shoppers, customers and employees – is our highest priority,” the company said in a statement, KNTV reported.
  • Nearly 622,000 people worldwide -- including nearly 105,000 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. Live updates for Saturday, March 28, continue below: Instacart employees plan strike over safety fears Update 10:17 p.m. EDT March 28: Instacart employees are planning to strike Monday over fears that they are exposing themselves to risk of the coronavirus and are not being adequately protected or compensated by their company. “Instacart has a well established history of exploiting its Shoppers, one that extends years back before our current crisis,” Instacart employees and Gig Workers Collective, an activist organization, wrote in a letter posted on Medium. “Now, its mistreatment of Shoppers has stooped to an all-time low. They are profiting astronomically off of us literally risking our lives, all while refusing to provide us with effective protection, meaningful pay, and meaningful benefits.” Employees are asking for an additional $5 on each order and personal protection equipment provided at no cost, including hand sanitizer and disinfectant sprays. It not unclear how many employees would participate. More than 200,000 people work as shoppers for the company, The New York Times reported. The company had plans to hire thousands more amid demand for delivery while people are quarantined and isolating. Instacart announced earlier this week new safety guidelines and said it would increase bonuses for its shoppers and extend sick and quarantine pay. “The health and safety of our entire community – shoppers, customers and employees – is our highest priority,” the company said in a statement, KNTV reported. 66 residents at Maryland nursing home test positive for virus Update 9:07 p.m. EDT March 28: A coronavirus outbreak has doubled the cases in Maryland after 66 residents at a nursing home tested positive for the deadly virus. Eleven of the 66 residents at Pleasant View Nursing Home have been hospitalized, WBAL reported. “Multiple state agencies are on the scene and working closely with the local health department & the facility to protect additional residents and staff who may have been exposed,” Gov. Larry Hogan said on social media. There have been 10 deaths in the state. US death toll surpasses 2,000, doubling in two days Update 6:39 p.m. EDT March 28:  More than 2,000 U.S. citizens have died from the coronavirus as of Saturday, the death toll doubling in about 48 hours, the Washington Post reported. The time between the first confirmed death and the 1,000th was about a month. There are nearly 120,000 confirmed cases of the virus in the U.S., according to a Johns Hopkins map. More than 30,000 people have died from the coronavirus worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins. Columbia Sportswear CEO cuts salary to $10,000 Update 5:59 p.m. EDT March 28: Columbia Sportswear CEO Tim Boyle has cut his salary to $10,000 while employees will continue to receive their regular pay. At least 10 other top executives took a voluntary 15% pay cut, The Oregonian reported. The company’s nearly 3,500 employees are receiving their regular paychecks through a “catastrophic pay” program while its stores are closed amid the coronavirus outbreak. The stores closed March 16 and will remain shuttered at least another two weeks. Boyle was paid $3.3 million in total compensation in 2018, The Oregonian reported. Infant in Illinois dies from virus Update 4:24 p.m. EDT March 28: An infant less than a year old died from the coronavirus in Illinois. The child is one of 13 new deaths in the state, health officials said Saturday. “There has never before been a death associated with COVID-19 in an infant. A full investigation is underway to determine the cause of death,” state Health Department Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said in a statement. “We must do everything we can to prevent the spread of this deadly virus. If not to protect ourselves, but to protect those around us.” In China, a 10-month-old died from the coronavirus, the New England Journal of Medicine reported March 18. There are 3,491 cases of the coronavirus and 47 deaths in Illinois, according to health officials. Ireland imposes strict lockdown order Update 3:42 p.m. EDT March 28: Ireland’s prime minister announced a lockdown with strict restrictions in the country Saturday, The New York Times reported. “Freedom was hard-won in our country, and it jars with us to restrict and limit individual liberties, even temporarily,” Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said in an address to the nation. As of early Saturday, Ireland had reported 2,121 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, and 22 deaths, the Times reported. From midnight until at least April 12, Ireland’s residents have been ordered to stay at home except to travel to essential jobs, medical appointments, family care or “brief” exercise, according to the newspaper. Trump goes to Virginia, sends off Navy ship bound for NYC Update 2:49 p.m. EDT March 28: President Donald Trump spoke in Front of the USNS Comfort in Norfolk, Virginia, on Saturday, before the Navy hospital ship before it departed for New York City. “This great ship behind me is a 70,000-ton message of hope and solidarity to the incredible people of New York,” Trump said. Trump said the ship would not treat patients with coronavirus, but will provide aid for people with other urgent care needs, CNN reported. “Their mission will be to care for New Yorkers who do not have the virus but who require urgent care,' Trump said. “In other words, they’ll be using this, people will be coming out of hospitals who don’t have the virus and they’ll be on this ship where they have great operating rooms and great facilities and the places in-bound, on land will be where people that have the virus will be.” RI governor confirms 2 deaths, issues stay-at-home order Update 2:06 p.m. EDT March 28: Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo confirmed the first two deaths in the state and issued a stay-at-home order, telling citizens they could still make necessary trips for food, gasoline or medicine, the Providence Journal reported. Raimondo also ordered anyone entering the state by any means to self-quarantine for 14 days, she said at a news conference. The governor also said all “non-essential” retail outlets will close Monday until April 13, “These are the first deaths and certainly will not be the last two,” Raimondo said. “This is for me and for all of us, this a reminder of the stakes that we face.” Kansas gov. Kelly issues stay-at-home order Update 1:32 p.m. EDT March 28: At a news conference, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly issued a stay-at-home order for the state beginning Monday at 12:01 p.m. “As we speak, well over half of Kansas’ population falls under a local stay at home order of some kind. Even without the executive order I’m issuing today, Kansas’ most populous counties have already issued local state orders to their communities,' Kelly said at the news conference. “As governor, I left these decisions to local health departments for as long as possible. But the reality is that a patchwork approach is a recipe for confusion in our statewide fight to slow the spread of coronavirus that statewide uniformity will ensure. We’re all playing by the same rules, and it would help prevent an influx of new cases for local health departments, many of which are already stretched to max.” Cuomo: NY presidential primary moved to June 23 Update 12:39 p.m. EDT March 28: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a news conference that the state’s presidential primary, scheduled for April 28, will be postponed until April 28. Cuomo said the prospect of many people congregating to vote in April was not wise. “I don’t think it’s wise to be bringing a lot of people to one location to vote,” Cuomo said. “A lot of people touching one doorknob, a lot of people touching one pen, whatever you call the new device on the ballots.” Cuomo also extended the tax filing deadline in the state to July 15. “This is good news for individuals, for businesses. You don’t have to file your state tax return. You file it with the federal tax return on July 15,' Cuomo said. “It’s bad news for the state of New York on a parochial level. That means we receive no revenue coming in until July 15.' UN to donate 250K protective masks to hospitals in NYC Update 12:29 p.m. EDT March 28: United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres said the organization will donate 250,000 protective face masks to medical facilities in New York City, CNN reported. The masks will be given to medical professionals “who have been working courageously, selflessly, and tirelessly in response to the spread of COVID-19 across the boroughs in the hope that they play some small role in saving lives,” Guterres said in a statement Saturday. UK death toll tops 1,000; Johnson tweets, ‘We’ll beat this' Update 11:02 a.m. EDT March 28: The death toll from the coronavirus in the United Kingdom passed the 1,000 mark, according to figures released by the country’s Department of Health and Social Care. That is an increase of 260 people, with the total at 1,019, according to the BBC. On Saturday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted, “We’re going to beat it, and we’re going to beat it together.' Johnson tested positive for coronavirus Friday. “Thank you to everybody who’s doing what I’m doing, working from home and stopping the virus spreading from household to household,' Johnson tweeted. Death toll surges in Spain, Italy Update 9:31 a.m. EDT March 28: Spain and Italy reported record numbers in the death tolls in their countries. Spanish officials reported 832 new deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing its total to 5,690, The New York Times reported. Spain also reported that 12,248 people have recovered from the virus, the newspaper reported. Italian officials said 969 people have died in the past day, bringing its total to 9,134, the Times reported. Trump approves Michigan’s request for disaster relief Update 9:31 a.m. EDT March 28: The White House announced Saturday that President Donald Trump approved Michigan’s request for a disaster declaration. “Yesterday, President Donald J. Trump declared that a major disaster exists in the State of Michigan and ordered federal assistance to supplement state, tribal, and local recovery efforts in the areas affected,” the White House said in a statement. The declaration means federal funding is available to state and eligible local governments, the statement said. Certain private nonprofit organizations also will be eligible for emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance, for areas in Michigan impacted by coronavirus. South Korea says 3 test-kit makers win FDA preapproval Update 8:42 a.m. EDT March 28: South Korea’s foreign ministry said three test-kit makers in the country have won preapproval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The move paves the way for kits to be sent to the United States, The New York Times reported. The ministry did not name the manufacturers but said the preapproval, under emergency use authorization, allowed the products to be sold in the United States, the newspaper reported. Global coronavirus deaths top 28K, worldwide cases near 608K Update 7:35 a.m. EDT March 28: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus hit 28,125 early Saturday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally. In the three months since the virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, it has infected at least 607,965 people worldwide. • The United States has reported 104,837 confirmed cases, resulting in 1,711 deaths. • Italy has confirmed 86,498 cases, resulting in 9,134 deaths. • China has recorded 81,996 cases, resulting in 3,299 deaths. • Spain has confirmed 65,719 infections, resulting in 5,138 deaths. • Germany has reported 53,340 cases, resulting in 395 deaths. • Iran has recorded 35,408 cases, resulting in 2,517 deaths. • France has confirmed 33,414 infections, resulting in 1,997 deaths. • The United Kingdom has reported 14,754 cases, resulting in 761 deaths. • Switzerland has confirmed 13,187 cases, resulting in 240 deaths. • South Korea has recorded 9,478 cases, resulting in 144 deaths. Japanese PM warms of ‘explosive spread’ of coronavirus threatening urban hubs Update 7:20 a.m. EDT March 28: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe issued a stern warning during a Saturday news conference, urging citizens to prepare for a “long-term battle” as the novel coronavirus threatens an “explosive spread” across the country. The Washington Post, citing Japanese media coverage of the news conference, reported Abe said cases of unknown origin are spiking, especially in the urban hubs of Tokyo and Osaka. “An uncontrollable chain of infection could lead to explosive spread somewhere,” he said. Abe’s comments came one day after Japan recorded its largest single-day spike in new cases of 123, bringing the nationwide total to 1,499 and 49 deaths. Nearly half of those newest cases were detected in Tokyo. New coronavirus cases spike in South Korea following steady decline Update 5:13 a.m. EDT March 28: Following a week of significantly decreased volume, South Korea reported a spike of 146 new coronavirus infections on Saturday. According to the nation’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the new cases bring South Korea’s total infections to 9,478, but Friday’s uptick stood in stark contrast to the fewer than 105 cases reported each day for the past week. On a more positive note, the country’s CDC confirmed only about 4,500 coronavirus patients remain isolated for treatment, while more than 4,800 patients have been deemed recovered and discharged from isolation. Italy’s coronavirus cases surpass those in China Update 5:07 a.m. EDT March 28: The number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases in Italy has reached 86,498, making it the second nation in as many days to surpass China’s total of 81,946. The United States eclipsed China’s infection total on Thursday – and currently reports slightly under 105,000 confirmed cases – but Italy’s death toll continues to climb as the outbreak ravages Europe.  Health officials confirmed 969 virus-related deaths in Italy on Friday, alone, making it the largest single-day death toll recorded by an country since the pandemic began. To date, the nation has reported a total of 9,134 fatalities, followed by Spain with 5,138 deaths and China with 3,295. U.S. Navy locks down Yokosuka base after sailors test positive for coronavirus Update 3:31 a.m. EDT March 28: The U.S. Navy has ordered a lockdown of its Yokosuka base after recording its second and third cases of novel coronavirus on Friday. The strategic Pacific base houses the Seventh Fleet. In a video posted to Facebook, Yokosuka Capt. Rich Jarrett encouraged residents on base to remain in their quarters “maximum extent possible.” “This is not a time to do lawn maintenance, take the dog for a long walk or go for a run. Time outdoors should be for necessities only and should be conducted as quickly as possible,” Jarrett posted in a Saturday morning update. Ginnie Mae poised to ease mortgage firms’ coronavirus fallout Update 3:18 a.m. EDT March 28: Mortgage firms are bracing for the crunch when borrowers begin falling behind on their payments, and Ginnie Mae sits poised to assist them in weathering the financial fallout of he novel coronavirus pandemic, The Wall Street Journal reported. Ginnie Mae, which already guarantees more than $2 trillion of mortgage-backed securities, told the Journal late Friday it will help companies such as Quicken Loans Inc. and Mr. Cooper Group Inc. with their anticipated cashflow interruptions. The agency will leverage a program typically reserved for natural disaster response. Read more here. Duke University develops N95 mask decontamination method to assist coronavirus fight Update 3:03 a.m. EDT March 28: Duke University researchers in North Carolina have developed a method for cleaning used N95 respirator masks, CNN reported. By Friday night, Duke’s Regional Biocontainment Laboratory team had already decontaminated hundreds of used N95 respirators without damaging them, so they can be re-worn several times, the network reported. More importantly, the researchers published their decontamination protocol, encouraging other medical centers and research facilities to follow suit. Specifically, the method uses vaporized hydrogen peroxide to kill microbial contaminants, CNN reported. Read more here. Trump issues order allowing Pentagon to reactivate former troops for coronavirus response Update 2:40 a.m. EDT March 28: U.S. President Donald Trump issued an order late Friday allowing the Pentagon to return certain troops to active duty in response to the mounting coronavirus crisis, The Washington Post reported. According to the Post, the order allows for the reactivation of former U.S. troops and members of the National Guard and Reserve to bolster the military’s ongoing efforts to help contain the virus’ spread. “Generally, these members will be persons in Headquarters units and persons with high demand medical capabilities whose call-up would not adversely affect their civilian communities,” chief Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Rath Hoffman said in a statement released early Saturday morning. Read more here. MLB, players strike deal should coronavirus cancel 2020 baseball season Update 2:14 a.m. EDT March 28: Major League Baseball owners and players ratified a deal Friday that sets terms should the novel coronavirus pandemic postpone or even cancel the 2020 season. According to NPR, players will be paid $170 million in advanced salaries over the next two months, and should the season ultimately be canceled, the advances will not have to be paid back. Meanwhile, players will receive “service time” credit for an entire year even if they only play portions of the 2020 season. The season had been slated to open Thursday and run through late October, NPR reported. Delta offering medical volunteers free flights to emerging US coronavirus hotspots Update 1:57 a.m. EDT March 28: Delta Air Lines announced Friday it will fly select medical workers to areas of the country hardest hit by the novel coronavirus for free. By early Saturday morning, the company had confirmed free, round-trip Delta flights will be offered to certain medical volunteers bound for Georgia, Louisiana and Michigan during the month of April. State-by-state breakdown of 101,242 US coronavirus cases, 1,588 deaths Update 12:44 a.m. EDT March 28: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States soared past 104,000 across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands early Saturday morning. According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 104,661 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 1,706 deaths. U.S. cases now outnumber those in any other nation, including the 86,498 reported in Italy and the 81,946 confirmed in China. Of the confirmed deaths, 519 have occurred in New York, 175 Washington state and 119 in Louisiana.  In terms of diagnosed cases, New York remains the hardest hit with at least 44,635 confirmed cases – more than five times any other state – followed by New Jersey with 8,825 and California with 3,801. Five other states have each confirmed at least 3,000 novel coronavirus cases, including: • Washington: 3,723, including 175 deaths • Michigan: 3,657, including 92 deaths • Massachusetts: 3,240, including 35 deaths • Florida: 3,192, including 45 deaths • Illinois: 3,026, including 34 deaths Meanwhile, Louisiana, Pennsylvania and Georgia each has confirmed at least 2,000 novel coronavirus infections, while Colorado, Texas, Connecticut, Tennessee and Ohio each has confirmed at least 1,000 cases. The figures include 21 people aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship and 49 repatriated citizens. The repatriations include 46 sickened aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship and three others retrieved from the outbreak’s epicenter in Wuhan, China. CNN’s state-by-state breakdown – including presumptive cases – of at least 101,242 cases detected on U.S. soil is as follows: • Alabama: 638, including 3 deaths • Alaska: 69, including 1 death • Arizona: 665, including 13 deaths • Arkansas: 386, including 3 deaths • California: 3,801, including 78 deaths • Colorado: 1,734, including 31 deaths • Connecticut: 1,291, including 27 deaths • Delaware: 163, including 2 deaths • District of Columbia: 267, including three deaths • Florida: 3,192, including 45 deaths • Georgia: 2,198, including 65 deaths • Guam: 49, including 1 death • Hawaii: 120 • Idaho: 230, including 4 deaths • Illinois: 3,026, including 34 deaths • Indiana: 981, including 24 deaths • Iowa: 235, including 3 deaths • Kansas: 202, including 4 deaths • Kentucky: 302, including 7 deaths • Louisiana: 2,746, including 119 deaths • Maine: 168, including 1 death • Maryland: 774, including 5 deaths • Massachusetts: 3,240, including 35 deaths • Michigan: 3,657, including 92 deaths • Minnesota: 398, including 4 deaths • Mississippi: 579, including 8 deaths • Missouri: 670, including 9 deaths • Montana: 109, including 1 death • Nebraska: 89, including 2 deaths • Nevada: 535, including 10 deaths • New Hampshire: 187, including 2 deaths • New Jersey: 8,825, including 108 deaths • New Mexico: 191, including 1 death • New York: 44,635, including 519 deaths • North Carolina: 763, including 3 deaths • North Dakota: 68, including 1 death • Ohio: 1,137, including 19 deaths • Oklahoma: 322, including 8 deaths • Oregon: 414, including 12 deaths • Pennsylvania: 2,218, including 22 deaths • Puerto Rico: 64, including 2 deaths • Rhode Island: 203 • South Carolina: 539, including 13 deaths • South Dakota: 58, including 1 death • Tennessee: 1,203, including 6 deaths • Texas: 1,731, including 23 deaths • U.S. Virgin Islands: 19 • Utah: 480, including 2 deaths • Vermont: 184, including 10 deaths • Virginia: 604, including 14 deaths • Washington: 3,723, including 175 deaths • West Virginia: 96 • Wisconsin: 842, including 13 deaths • Wyoming: 70
  • Columbia Sportswear CEO Tim Boyle has cut his salary to $10,000 while employees will continue to receive their regular pay. At least 10 other top executives took a voluntary 15% pay cut, The Oregonian reported. The company’s nearly 3,500 employees are receiving their regular paychecks through a “catastrophic pay” program while its stores are closed amid the coronavirus outbreak. The stores closed March 16 and will remain shuttered at least another two weeks. Boyle was paid $3.3 million in total compensation in 2018, The Oregonian reported. Earlier this week, Wayne Kent Taylor, CEO of the Texas Roadhouse restaurant chain, said he would give up his salary. In 2018, his total compensation was $1.3 million.
  • A group of protesters ignored a stay-at-home order so they could gather in front of a North Carolina women’s clinic. The city of Charlotte received complaints Saturday morning about people possibly not following Mecklenburg County’s stay-at-home order. There was a protest at a preferred women’s health center in the Grier Heights neighborhood. “They’re putting our first responders at risk if they have to show up,” Charlotte Mayor Pro Tem Julie Eiselt said. “I just think it’s unconscionable. You can agree or disagree with reproductive health care, but it doesn’t matter. It’s legal. It’s deemed an essential business.”
  • Starting Saturday, the federal drive-thru coronavirus testing site at Lot J at TIAA Bank Field will be waiving the fever requirement. Previously, patients who wanted to be tested had to have an on-site temperature of 99.6 degrees or higher. Instead, patients will only need to exhibit respiratory symptoms or be a first responder or healthcare worker who has direct contact with patients.  While a doctor’s order and appointment are not required, you will be evaluated by a medical professional on site. If you don't meet the requirements, you will not be tested.  If you wish to be tested, you need to follow the following rules:  • Bring your own pen  • Bring a photo ID (first responders and healthcare professionals should bring a work ID)  • Refrain from taking any fever-reducing medicine four to six hours before testing  • Remain inside of vehicle at all times  A maximum of four people per car can be tested.  With long lines expected around the stadium, drivers coming from the Westside should use Bay Street, while drivers coming from the Eastside should use Gator Bowl Boulevard. The site is open from 9 AM to 5 PM, 7 days a week.

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