- The coronavirus has killed at least 920 people in the US.
- More than 64,000 coronavirus cases have been reported across all 50 states and Washington, DC.
- The virus has also spread to Guam, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands.
- The US has declared a national emergency and is considering sweeping financial measures to shore up the economy.
- The Senate passed a roughly $2 trillion stimulus package on Wednesday evening as the coronavirus threatened to throw the US economy into a near-term recession. It now heads to the House of Representatives before making it to President Trump’s desk.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The coronavirus pandemic is reshaping the US so rapidly that it can be hard to keep up with the rising number of cases and deaths, new lockdown orders, and responses from lawmakers.
So a dozen Business Insider staffers are keeping this post updated with the most recent developments around the clock. Below, you will find a list of the latest headlines, followed by state-by-state coronavirus case totals and death tolls in the US. After that, we’re distilling key pieces of recent news to bring you the latest information about “shelter in place” orders, containment measures, projections for the US outbreak’s trajectory, and new bills from Congress.
The COVID-19 virus has infected at least 64,687 people and killed 920 in the US as of March 25. Cases have been reported in all 50 states, as well as Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands, and Washington, DC.
Here are the latest headlines:
- WHO: The world has a ‘second window of opportunity’ to stop the coronavirus, but 6 key actions are needed
- New York City hospitals are running out of room in their morgues, but the flow of coronavirus bodies is just starting to ramp up
- 32 prominent economists from both parties just signed a letter arguing that saving lives from coronavirus would also save the economy
- Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti warns of mass death, condemns ‘false hope,’ and tells us his city will be on lockdown for another two months — and to ‘be prepared for longer’
- Elective procedures have come to a halt because of the coronavirus and some healthcare workers are getting laid off
- More than 113,000 people across the globe have recovered from the coronavirus
- Democrats think the coronavirus outbreak will last another 3 months, but Republicans are more optimistic
- Billionaire Mark Cuban says people should ‘ignore anything someone like me might say’ about sending employees back to work because ‘lives are at stake’
Here’s what else to know.
The coronavirus has not spared a single state. The nationwide caseload has surged to at least 64,687 as of March 25. At least 920 people have died.
Here are the numbers of cases and deaths in each state and territory:
Alabama: 283 cases
Alaska: 40 cases
Arizona: 401 cases, 6 deaths
Arkansas: 280 cases, 2 deaths
California: 2,958 cases, 65 deaths
Colorado: 912 cases, 11 deaths
Connecticut: 875 cases, 19 deaths
Delaware: 119 cases
Florida: 1,682 cases, 23 deaths
Georgia: 1,247 cases, 40 deaths
Guam: 36 cases, 1 death
Hawaii: 91 cases, 1 death
Idaho: 91 cases
Illinois: 1,537 cases, 16 deaths
Indiana: 477 cases, 14 deaths
Iowa: 145 cases, 1 death
Kansas: 129 cases, 3 deaths
Kentucky: 162 cases, 4 deaths
Louisiana: 1,795 cases, 65 deaths
Maine: 142 cases
Maryland: 425 cases, 4 deaths
Massachusetts: 1,838 cases, 15 deaths
Michigan: 2,296 cases, 43 deaths
Minnesota: 286 cases, 1 death
Mississippi: 377 cases, 2 deaths
Missouri: 352 cases, 8 deaths
Montana: 53 cases
Nebraska: 71 cases
Nevada: 323 cases, 6 deaths
New Hampshire: 108 cases, 1 death
New Jersey: 4,402 cases, 62 deaths
New Mexico: 100 cases, 1 death
New York: 30,811 cases, 285 deaths
North Carolina: 577 cases, 2 deaths
North Dakota: 39 cases
Ohio: 704 cases, 11 deaths
Oklahoma: 164 cases, 5 deaths
Oregon: 215 cases, 8 deaths
Pennsylvania: 1,260 cases, 15 deaths
Puerto Rico: 51 cases, 2 deaths
Rhode Island: 132 cases
South Carolina: 342 cases, 7 deaths
South Dakota: 41 cases, 1 death
Tennessee: 916 cases, 3 deaths
Texas: 1,179 cases, 15 deaths
US Virgin Islands: 17 cases
Utah: 340 cases, 1 death
Vermont: 125 cases, 8 deaths
Virginia: 396 cases, 9 deaths
Washington: 2,472 cases, 125 deaths
Washington, DC: 187 cases, 2 deaths
West Virginia: 39 cases
Wisconsin: 586 cases, 7 deaths
Wyoming: 44 cases
Because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s case counts are sometimes delayed and not always comprehensive, Business Insider is consulting a variety of trackers (from Johns Hopkins, an independent database called Worldometer, and other projects), as well as tallying local reports to update this story with a comprehensive picture of the virus’ impact across the country.
Washington state was the first to report a coronavirus case. The first coronavirus-related death occurred there too, in King County on February 29. West Virginia was the last state to report a case — its first came March 17.
The Senate passed a roughly $2 trillion stimulus package on Wednesday evening as the coronavirus threatened to throw the US economy into a near-term recession.
Democrats and Senate leaders reached a deal on conditions for a $2 trillion stimulus package for the US economy early on Wednesday morning, causing global stocks to climb on.
The bill, titled the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or the ”CARES Act,” passed the Senate on Wednesday evening by a vote of 96-0. It now heads to the House of Representatives before making it to President Trump’s desk.
More than $300 billion of the package is earmarked for small businesses struggling to stay afloat and keep workers. The bill would provide loans for small businesses and allow for payroll-tax deferment. It also includes direct payments to some citizens, a stimulus for the airline industry, and increased unemployment insurance.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a speech following the announcement that the package would include checks for Americans, and he called it a “wartime level of investment for our nation.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer made sure businesses controlled by President Donald Trump, his family, top US officials, and members of Congress couldn’t receive money from the fund.
Earlier in March, Congress had also passed two bills meant to offer relief to US residents.
The first bill, passed March 6, provided about $8 billion in emergency funding. More than $3 billion was to go toward the research and development of vaccines and diagnostics, about $2.2 billion was for public-health programs, and $1 billion was to help with medical supplies and other preparedness measures.
The second bill, known as the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, was signed into law March 18. It included $300 billion in loans meant to help small businesses endure the upheaval.
It also marked the US government’s first step toward bolstering workers and their families, with several measures intended to provide financial relief including increased free testing, benefits, and paid sick, family, and medical leave.
The federal government has suspended interest on some student loans, and Trump last week announced that all federal student-loan borrowers had the option to suspend monthly payments for “at least the next 60 days.”
The early-morning stimulus package followed a “virtual town hall” hosted by Fox News the evening before, in which Trump made a host of unsubstantiated claims about the virus.
Trump insisted that more Americans would die if the country remained on lockdown than would if the economy were allowed to reopen, arguing that a tanking economy would result in more people dying by suicide than “the flu” — a misleading comparison given the latest understanding about how the new virus differs from the seasonal flu.
“You’re going to lose a number of people to the flu, but you’re going to lose more people by putting a country in a massive recession or depression,” he said. “You’re going to have suicides by the thousands. You’re going to have all sorts of things happen.”
New York state’s coronavirus case total is skyrocketing, making it the hardest-hit state.
Home to over 30,000 coronavirus patients, New York state has nearly 7% of the world’s cases.
Its first reported patient was a 39-year-old Manhattan healthcare worker who had recently traveled to Iran. The second was a 50-year-old Westchester County man who works in a law office near Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan. At least 120 cases were linked to this man, prompting Gov. Andrew Cuomo to set up a 1-mile “containment area” on March 10 around a synagogue in New Rochelle, which is regarded as the state’s epicenter.
On March 20, Cuomo issued an order closing all nonessential businesses and banning nonessential gatherings of any size in New York. The mandate also requires that people with preexisting conditions, as well as residents ages 70 years and older, stay home. De Blasio on March 24 warned that the virus was “moving rapidly” and was on track to overrun the state’s hospital system, he said on “Fox & Friends.”
Later the same day, Dr. Deborah Birx, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, said at a press conference that those who were recently in New York should self-quarantine for 14 days.
“Because of the rate of the number of cases, you may have been exposed before you left New York,” Birx said, adding that about 56% of new cases in the US were coming from the New York City metro area.
California’s governor issued a state-wide order March 19 for all residents to stay at home. Illinois, Louisiana, and Ohio have since followed suit.
California’s two biggest metropolitan areas — the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles — were already under “shelter in place” orders. Mayor Eric Garcetti issued a “Safer at Home” order for Los Angeles on March 18, a day after nearly 7 million Bay Area residents were ordered to “shelter in place” for three weeks.
Newsom estimated that 56% of the state’s residents — 25.5 million people — would test positive for the coronavirus in the coming two months.
The Illinois order began the evening of March 21 and lasts through April 7.
“I’ve asked every one of these experts, What action can I take to save the most lives?'” Gov. JB Pritzker said, according to The Chicago Tribune. “Well, they’ve come back to me with one inescapable conclusion: To avoid the loss of potentially tens of thousands of lives, we must enact an immediate stay-at-home order for the state of Illinois.”
Gov. John Bel Edwards of Louisiana announced a “stay at home” order for residents from 5 p.m. local time on March 23 until April 12. Ohio’s order took effect March 24 and is to remain in place until at least April 6, Gov. Mike DeWine said. Michigan, Massachusetts, Ohio and Maryland have also enacted lockdowns.
The pandemic has sent the world spiraling toward a “wartime economy” and a recession.
On March 16, the stock market suffered its worst day since 1987. The S&P 500 dropped 8.1% within a minute of opening, triggering a 15-minute market-wide trading halt. The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 9.7%, or 2,250 points, before the stoppage.
The “Crash of 2020” wiped out as much as $24 trillion from the global stock market, Bank of America wrote on March 19.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin reportedly warned Republican senators that US unemployment could jump to 20%.
US jobless claims surged to a two-year high last week, and Goldman Sachs predicted an eightfold increase in claims.
Stocks climbed on Wednesday after the Senate and White House reached a historic relief deal.
The CDC recommends that all Americans wash their hands often and avoid close contact with others.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new coronavirus health guidelines on March 15 recommending that gatherings of 50-plus people be postponed for at least eight weeks. People have been asked to stay at least 6 feet away from others. Experts say social distancing is the only chance we have to slow the coronavirus’ rate of spread.
Disinfecting high-touch surfaces like doorknobs, countertops, and phones daily can also help prevent the virus’ spread.
The CDC advises Americans to make a household plan for how to prepare and what to do if somebody gets sick. In case of major disruptions, people should keep a two-week supply of medications, food, and other essentials.
For people showing COVID-19 symptoms, the CDC recommends staying home except to get medical care, though it advises calling the hospital before leaving. The CDC also advises separating sick people from everyone else in the home, with a designated bedroom and bathroom that only the sick person uses, if possible.
If you are sick, wear a face mask to protect others around you. But because of short supply, the CDC recommends face masks only for sick people and those who care for them.
The government has introduced sweeping travel restrictions.
This stringent warning is not a legal prohibition but is typically reserved for war zones and countries plagued by disease outbreaks or financial collapse. Americans who are abroad have been urged to return home or make plans to shelter in place. Those who ignore the warning should be “prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period,” according to the State Department.
The US also closed its borders with Canada and Mexico.
Trump had already limited travel from most of Europe — including, after an initial exemption, the UK and Ireland. Before that, on February 3, the US prohibited foreigners who had been in China within the past 14 days from entering the US. American citizens and permanent residents who had recently traveled to China’s Hubei province were quarantined.
Eighty percent of US coronavirus deaths so far have been among people 65 and older, the CDC reported.
The CDC reviewed 4,226 confirmed coronavirus cases and found that deaths, ICU admissions, and hospitalization rates were all higher among older Americans.
While the findings are preliminary, and though testing has been “limited,” the CDC said, “the risk for serious disease and death from COVID-19 is higher in older age groups.”
People who have preexisting health conditions are also at higher risk of death, according to the CDC. Those findings match trends in other countries like China and South Korea.
The US is bracing for a wave of infections that could overwhelm the healthcare system. Nearly 5 million Americans could be hospitalized.
Experts are concerned that hospitals across the country don’t have enough beds, staff, ventilators, or protective equipment for the coming surge of COVID-19 patients.
In a leaked presentation hosted by the American Hospital Association, one expert estimated that 4.8 million Americans could require hospitalization because of the virus.
The US has fewer hospital beds per 1,000 people than places like Japan, South Korea, and Italy.
According to one expert, about 1 million Americans may need ventilator treatment during the coronavirus outbreak. A February report found that the US had only about 170,000 of the life-saving machines.
Public-health experts are urging interventions that could help “flatten the curve” of the outbreak — slow the virus’ spread, in other words — so the country’s healthcare system isn’t overwhelmed. That includes keeping people isolated from others outside their household.
Workers at New York City hospitals are already running out of ventilators and stretching single disposable face masks across a week of shifts, The New York Times reported. Some hospitals are making protective gear out of office supplies.
Cuomo on March 24 said New York state has raised its projection for the number of hospital beds needed at the peak of COVID-19 cases from 110,000 to 140,000. There are only 53,000 beds in New York currently.
“The apex is higher than we thought and the apex is sooner than we thought,” he stressed.
Some experts estimate that 40% to 70% of the US population could contract the virus in the next 18 months and some 1.5 million people could die.
That estimate, from a panel of experts at the University of California at San Francisco, assumed a 1% fatality rate from the coronavirus, with half of the US population getting infected. The researchers also assumed no drug would be found effective against the virus or made available.
One member of the panel, Joshua Batson, wrote on Twitter that “the large % infected is not a forgone conclusion; coordinated action can now help.”
The US tax-filing deadline has been delayed to July 15.
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin announced the new deadline via Twitter on March 20. The July 15 deadline applies to federal taxes only. State tax deadlines vary.
Mnuchin also said the IRS would waive interest and penalty charges for 90 days for Americans who owe up to $1 million in taxes.
Deeming himself a “wartime president,” Trump invoked the Defense Production Act on March 18.
Employing the Korean War-era law allows the administration to marshal the American private sector to manufacture desperately needed medical supplies, including face masks, protective gear, test kits, and ventilators, that are crucial but remain in short supply.
“I view it — in a sense as a wartime president,” the president said after employing the Defense Production Act. “I mean, that’s what we’re fighting. I mean, it’s a very tough situation here. You have to do things.”
But Trump has said he isn’t in a hurry to use it.
“I only signed the Defense Production Act to combat the Chinese Virus should we need to invoke it in a worst- case scenario in the future,” he said in a tweet. “Hopefully there will be no need, but we are all in this TOGETHER!”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on March 19 that “there is not a day to lose,” according to The Hill.
“The president must immediately use the powers of the Defense Production Act to mass produce and coordinate distribution of these critical supplies, before the need worsens and the shortages become even more dire,” she said.
Trump has put the onus of medical supply shortages onto state governments, saying: “Governors are supposed to be doing a lot of this work, and they are doing a lot of this work. The federal government’s not supposed to be out there buying vast amounts of items and then shipping. You know, we’re not shipping clerks.”
Multiple US lawmakers have tested positive for the coronavirus, and dozens more politicians have self-quarantined after interacting with someone who was sick.
Mayor Francis Suarez of Miami announced he had the virus on March 13. Mario Diaz-Balart, a Republican congressman from Florida, tested positive on March 18.
The same day, Rep. Ben McAdams, a Democratic congressman from Utah, announced on Twitter that he had tested positive.
Sen. Rand Paul tested positive on Sunday, his office said on Twitter. Paul is not presenting any symptoms, but the announcement said he tested and, later, quarantined himself “out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events.”
Others who have self-quarantined include Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina as well as Reps. Matt Gaetz of Florida, Doug Collins of Georgia, Paul Gosar of Arizona, and Adam Schiff of California, according to CNN.
The World Health Organization has urged governments to step up testing, but the US still lags.
The White House and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have faced harsh criticism of their handling of the epidemic.
The CDC initially designed a faulty test for COVID-19 and then hit delays in distributing a better one for state and local labs to use, ProPublica reported. The solution turned out to be simply to throw away one ingredient and use the original test, but it took 16 days to get state labs that directive, Business Insider’s Aria Bendix reported.
Testing is ramping up now — the US went from about 1,700 tests done on March 8 to more than 138,000 on March 20, according to The COVID Tracking Project — but the test-kit shortages have prevented health officials from gaining a clear understanding of exactly how many Americans have contracted the virus.
South Korea, by contrast, has tested more than 300,000 people and constructed drive-thru screening spots so patients could be assessed within 10 minutes. The US and South Korea reported their first coronavirus cases on the same day.
Trump has said he doesn’t take any responsibility for the significant delay in the country’s coronavirus testing.
All US states, and numerous cities and counties, have declared states of emergency.
Gov. Jay Inslee was the first to declare an emergency after the first coronavirus death was confirmed in Washington on February 29.
Declaring an emergency allows states to activate emergency response plans and operation centers. It also enables governments to get reimbursed for money they spend on preparedness and authorizes leaders to use funds to deploy additional personnel, buy equipment, and prepare stockpiles.
In the case of the coronavirus, this move also allows leaders to enforce containment measures like banning large gatherings and shuttering public spaces.
Trump declared a national emergency on March 13.
The majority of states have closed public schools.
Children in New York, California, Washington state, Ohio, Maryland, and other places are out of school. Though most closings were meant to last a few weeks, Gov. Gavin Newsom said schools in California were likely to remain shut for the rest of the academic year, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The pandemic has forced sports leagues to suspend seasons, major events to be canceled or postponed, and venues like restaurants and gyms to close.
The NBA and MLB suspended their seasons, the South by Southwest festival was canceled, Disneyland and more than a dozen Las Vegas resorts were shuttered, and Coachella and the Boston Marathon were postponed to later this year.
Many restaurants, theaters, gyms, and public spaces have closed amid the growing pandemic.
Panicked shoppers have stocked up on essentials like hand sanitizer, food, and toilet paper, leading to local shortages and price gouging.
In response, stores like Walmart, Kroger, and Target have begun rationing high-demand items. Costco has banned returns on such items to discourage stockpiling. One wine-and-spirits producer is rushing to make and donate hand sanitizer (though washing with soap and water is the best way to keep your hands clean).
Amazon has said it is suspending shipments of all nonessential products to its warehouses. In a letter to vendors, the company said it was prioritizing medical supplies, household staples, and other high-demand products until April 5. Amazon also temporarily closed its Prime Pantry service so it can restock after a spike in demand.
You can still get essentials like toilet paper at a few online retailers.
The US’s first major outbreak began in Washington state.
The Life Care Center in Kirkland was the epicenter of Washington’s coronavirus outbreak. More than 50 residents contracted the virus, and at least 19 deaths have been linked to the long-term-care facility.
The US repatriated hundreds of Americans from Wuhan and various cruise ships.
About 800 Americans were repatriated from the Chinese city of Wuhan and quarantined on military bases. Four of them tested positive for the virus. Most others have since been released.
In total, the US coronavirus case count also includes 49 cases among passengers who had been on the Diamond Princess cruise ship. More than 700 people tested positive on the ship during and after a highly criticized quarantine in the port of Yokohama, Japan.
Passengers also tested positive on the Grand Princess, a cruise ship owned by the same company, just one week after the Diamond Princess was fully evacuated. The Grand Princess docked in Oakland, California, to release its passengers. At least 28 people evacuated from the ship have tested positive, though many are still under quarantine and some have declined to be tested.
Celebrities, athletes, and influencers have contracted the virus — and shown how being a VIP helps people cut the line for COVID-19 tests.
On March 11, Tom Hanks announced that he and his wife, the actress Rita Wilson, fell sick while in Australia. They were Hollywood’s first high-profile coronavirus cases.
The actor Daniel Dae Kim, the NBA players Kevin Durant and Rudy Gobert, and the singer-songwriter Charlotte Lawrence have also tested positive, among many others.
Some celebrities got tested quickly after presenting symptoms, highlighting disparities in the American healthcare system.
Trump says he always knew the coronavirus outbreak would become a pandemic, but his record contradicts him.
Speaking at the White House on March 17, Trump said, “I felt it was a pandemic long before it was called a pandemic.”
But he previously downplayed the coronavirus’ threat. The president first commented on the outbreak January 22, a day after the first US case was reported.
“Are there worries about a pandemic at this point?” CNBC’s Joe Kernen asked.
Trump replied: “No. Not at all. And we have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s going to be just fine.”
Since then, Trump has accused CNN and MSNBC of “panicking markets,” falsely promised that a vaccine would be available “very quickly” and “very rapidly,” and touted his actions as “the most aggressive taken by any country.”
He awarded himself a perfect score when evaluating his administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.