Coronavirus spreads across US
The Trump administration pressed on Tuesday for enactment of a $1 trillion stimulus package, possibly to include $1,000 direct payments to individual Americans, to blunt the economic pain from a coronavirus outbreak that has killed over 100 people in the country.
PANDEMIC HAS CHANGED SHARPLY OVER THE PAST FEW DAYS
With cases of the respiratory illness reported in all 50 states and the total number of known US infections surging past 6,400, millions of Americans hunkered down at home instead of commuting to work or going to school.
About 6.7 million people in the San Francisco Bay area have already been ordered to stay home for all but the most crucial outings until April 7. Eateries, bars, gyms and other “non-essential” businesses were shut down, but marijuana dispensaries were allowed to stay open as cannabis was deemed an “essential medicine” by health authorities.
Kentucky and Illinois recorded their first coronavirus deaths, driving the nationwide toll to at least 108.
Authorities said 22 people had been infected at a nursing home in suburban Chicago.
In Washington state, where 52 people have died, many at a suburban Seattle long-term care facility, Governor Jay Inslee signed legislation approving $200 million for homeless aid and other measures to fight the virus. California’s governor signed off on $1 billion, and Georgia’s governor approved $100 million.
Vice President Mike Pence said the White House may direct the U.S. military to establish field hospitals in virus hot zones if requested by state governors, or enlist the Army Corps of Engineers to add capacity to existing hospitals.