Months into the COVID-19 pandemic states are setting records for the most new cases and deaths in a week since the pandemic began.


The Dodgers’ Justin Turner left World Series Game 6 with a positive COVID-19 test but returned to the field for a celebration and photos with the trophy. He hugged teammates and posed for photos, but didn’t keep a mask on the entire time. 

In Wisconsin, the state saw its worst day in the coronavirus pandemic to-date. Its two-month-long outbreak is one of the worst in the country, and as the state repeatedly breaks daily case records, health experts expect hospitalizations and deaths to continue rising.

U.S. stocks opened sharply lower Wednesday, deepening this week’s losses as countries tighten precautions to try to stem rising numbers of coronavirus infections. The Dow Jones industrial average tumbled 750 points, adding to recent declines after the blue-chip average shed 650 points on Monday.

And three Western states will partner with California to independently review any FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine before distributing it to the public. Washington, Oregon and Nevada joined California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “COVID-19 Scientific Safety Review Workgroup,” which will review the safety of any coronavirus vaccine. 

More developments:

  • The White House has listed “ending the COVID-19 pandemic” among the Trump administration’s accomplishments. The U.S. breaks records for new coronavirus cases daily.
  • Workers considering moving to a lower cost-of-living area amid the pandemic could be hit with a massive pay cut.
  • For first time since the pandemic began, the U.S. added more than half a million coronavirus cases in a week, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data.

📈 Today’s numbers: A USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins data through late Tuesday shows 20 states set records for new cases in a week while three states had a record number of deaths in a week: Nebraska Tennessee and Wyoming. The U.S. has reported more than 8.7 million cases and more than 226,600 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: 44 million cases and 1.2 million deaths.

Read this: USA TODAY recently checked back in with some of the dozens of Americans who spoke to us earlier this year after losing jobs because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and found that many have edged closer to financial calamity.


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Big Ten football game canceled after head coach, players test positive

Wisconsin’s Big Ten football game this Saturday at Nebraska has been canceled because of positive COVID-19 tests among players and staff, including head coach Paul Chryst, Badger officials announced Wednesday morning. 

The team’s test positivity rate for COVID-19 reached a threshold set by the league that requires teams to stop regular practice and competition for a minimum of seven days and then reassess the situation. According to Big Ten protocols, instead of rescheduling the game, it will be declared a no contest and will be neither a victory nor a loss for either team.

As of Wednesday morning, 12 people within the football program had tested positive for COVID-19 in the past five days. That includes six players and six staff members, including Chryst. Additional test results are pending.

Chryst is the second Big Ten coach known to contract the coronavirus.

– Jeff Potrykus

Dow sheds 750 points as coronavirus cases spike, stimulus talks hit impasse

U.S. stocks opened sharply lower Wednesday, deepening this week’s losses as countries tighten precautions to try to stem rising numbers of coronavirus infections.

The Dow Jones industrial average tumbled 750 points, adding to recent declines after the blue-chip average shed 650 points on Monday. The S&P 500 shed 1.8%, and was off 5.3% from its record heading into Wednesday. The Nasdaq Composite slumped 1.6%. The declines were led by losses in companies that would benefit from the economy reopening, including airline and cruise liners.

Optimism that the pandemic may have been brought somewhat under control has dissipated as infections continue to rise in the U.S., Europe and other parts of the world. Investors are clamoring for Congress to deliver more virus relief for the U.S. economy, but they’re increasingly acknowledging it won’t happen anytime soon. The uncertainty surrounding the upcoming U.S. election also has left market players wary.

– Jessica Menton

Eli Lilly makes deal with US to supply nearly 1M doses of monoclonal antibody 

Eli Lilly and Company of Indianapolis announced Wednesday that it had reached an agreement with the U.S. government to supply 300,000 doses of its monoclonal antibody bamlanivimab for $375 million and up to 650,000 more doses next year.

The company agreed to provide the initial doses within two months of receiving an emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration. Lilly applied for the EUA several weeks ago, the same day President Trump declared he had been “cured” from COVID-19 by a similar drug made by Regeneron.

Preliminary studies suggested that both bamlanivimab and Regeneron’s drug REGN-COV2 could be safe and effective at treating patients suffering from mild to moderate COVID-19, although definitive studies have not yet been completed.

The federal government this week stopped a trial of bamlanivimab in sicker COVID-19 patients, saying that early results suggested it was unlikely to prove effective against the disease. Lilly said it could manufacture up to 1 million doses of bamlanivimab by the end of this year, and substantially more next year, as it brings more manufacturing capacity online.

– Karen Weintraub

US reports more than 500K COVID cases in a week, setting another pandemic record

For first time since the pandemic began, the United States added more than half a million coronavirus cases in a week, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data.

This is the third day in a row the U.S. set a record for how many coronavirus cases it reported over the previous seven days. 

On Tuesday, the country recorded 502,828 new coronavirus cases in the previous week. On Monday, the figure was 489,918, and on Sunday the number was 481,519. The previous record from the spring and summer surges was at the end of July with 471,230 cases. 

The U.S. has blown past the earlier records by 6.7 percent.

At the latest week’s pace, an American tests positive for COVID-19 every 1.2 seconds and dies from the disease every minute and 47 seconds.

– Michael Stucka

SUNY students must provide COVID-19 negative test before leaving for Thanksgiving break


COVID-19 widespread testing is crucial to fighting the pandemic, but is there enough testing? The answer is in the positivity rates.


State universities in New York announced Wednesday that students must provide a negative COVID-19 test before leaving campus for Thanksgiving break, according to a statement.

All students in over 64 of SUNY’s colleges and universities, which is more than 140,000 students, must receive a negative test result within 10 days of leaving. Schools are required to submit a plan to test all of their on-campus students within that window by Nov. 5.

“By requiring all students to test negative before leaving, we are implementing a smart, sensible policy that protects students’ families and hometown communities and drastically reduces the chances of COVID-19 community spread,” said SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras.

Most SUNY schools will shut down residential facilities after Thanksgiving break and shift to remote learning. 

Wisconsin reports worst day of pandemic yet with 64 deaths

Wisconsin reported its most dismal coronavirus numbers yet Tuesday as state health officials urged residents to leave home only when absolutely necessary and warned the crisis would continue escalating.

The state Department of Health Services reported 5,262 new cases and 64 deaths Tuesday, both records far above any previous daily counts. The death toll now stands at 1,852.

There were 1,385 people hospitalized due to the virus in Wisconsin, including 339 in intensive care units. Both were all-time highs. Hospitalizations have seen rapid, unimpeded growth for the last five weeks, straining short-staffed health care systems across the state.

“This is no longer a slow-motion disaster,” said Gregory Poland, director of the vaccine research group at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. “This is a disaster in warp speed. And it’s maddening to me as a physician because a whole lot of people have died and are dying.”

– Sophie Carson, Alison Dirr and Mark Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Dodgers’ Justin Turner left World Series Game 6 with positive COVID test

Minutes after the Los Angeles Dodgers clinched their first World Series title since 1988, Major League Baseball announced that third baseman Justin Turner had tested positive for COVID-19.

Fox broke the news on the postgame show following the Dodgers 3-1 win in Game 6 on Tuesday night at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, and Turner’s positive test was confirmed by commissioner Rob Manfred.

“Obviously we’re concerned when any of our players test positive,” Manfred said. “We learned during the game. He was immediately isolated to prevent spread.”

MLB had not reported a positive test in 57 days, and there was a soft bubble in place for the World Series.

– Jesse Yomtov

Hawaii to allow visitors from Japan with negative tests starting Nov. 6

Starting Nov. 6, Hawaii will allow visitors from Japan to bypass the state’s 14-day quarantine requirement if they test negative for the coronavirus within 72 hours of departing for the islands.

But Japanese travelers will still have to spend two weeks in quarantine upon returning home, which will likely limit the number of people taking advantage of the plan.

Hawaii earlier this month implemented a similar testing program for travelers from other parts of the U.S. Hawaii’s tourism-dependent economy gets more travelers from Japan than any other foreign country. Before the pandemic, the state would welcome about 5,000 visitors from Japan daily. Those numbers have dwindled to almost none.

NBA union head unsure about season’s potential start in December

With the NBA’s owners proposing to start next season around Christmas, should the players view it as an early holiday present? Or would they like to return the gift?

“I don’t know what I think yet,” Michele Roberts, the executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, told USA TODAY Sports on Tuesday. “We are in the throes of discussing it and in the throes of evaluating what it means in terms of the revenue-related issues that have been raised. Frankly, we’re also spending some time trying to get information on what this means in respect to player health.”

Some of that information varies by team.

The NBA Finals ended on Oct. 11, leaving the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat with just over two months to recover before the proposed start of next season. But eight teams have not played since the NBA suspended the 2019-20 season on March 11 because of the coronavirus outbreak. After the NBA resumed at the quarantined campus near Orlando, six more teams ended their season by mid-August and another eight by late August.

– Mark Medina

White House science office lists ‘ending the COVID-19 pandemic’ as accomplishment

The White House’s science policy office on Tuesday listed “ending the COVID-19 pandemic” among the Trump administration’s first-term accomplishments, as the U.S. breaks records for new coronavirus cases daily.

press release from the Office of Science and Technology Policy lists the “decisive actions to engage scientists and health professionals in academia, industry, and government to understand, treat, and defeat the disease” as a success.

However, the disease has not been defeated, and the White House has signaled they are not going to be able to control it before a vaccine is available.

The U.S. has reported 489,769 COVID-19 cases in the last week, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data. It’s another record high since July when the nation saw a peak in cases. 

– Savannah Behrmann

Moving during COVID-19 pandemic could come with a massive pay cut

Though workers may no longer need to put up with tight spaces and high costs to land top work opportunities because of the pandemic, moving from the nation’s hottest job markets could cost them as much as 30%, according to new research Glassdoor shared exclusively with USA TODAY.

Whether they are decamping for a new job or signing on remotely for their current company, where employees clock in will increasingly determine how much they take home, Glassdoor chief economist Andrew Chamberlain told USA TODAY.

“Traditionally, wages almost never fall, but we are in an environment where I am basically predicting that wages will fall for a lot of jobs,” Chamberlain said. “The reason wages never fall is that workers never do things like this. They never pick up and move to radically different cities en masse.”

– Jessica Guynn

COVID-19 resources from USA TODAY 

Contributing: The Associated Press


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