Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernndez was discharged from hospital on Thursday morning, 16 days after being diagnosed with Covid-19.
Speaking in front of the cameras and clearly emotional, Hernndez thanked his medical team and honored the victims of the pandemic in his country.
Many think this is a game and it is not until they see a relative who gets sick or when they get sick themselves that they understand the seriousness of this issue. I tell you, the truth is I dont wish this on anyone, he said.
Hernndez's speech was broadcasted on Honduras National TV (TNH) and social media.
I thought about what would happen if I could not be with my family anymore, he said, adding that his wife,first lady Ana Garca de Hernndez,is recovering from the virus at home.
The President asked the Honduran people to help him to fight the virus by taking individual responsibility. Covid has come to change our lives he added.
Hernndez said hospitals in the country's major cities are collapsing due to the escalating demand of the pandemic.
He was admitted to a military hospital on June 16, becoming the first president in Latin America to test positive for the virus. His wife and two aides also tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
Honduras reported 704 new Covid-19 cases on Wednesday evening, bringing the total to at least 20,262. The death toll in the Central American country stands at 542.
The current spike in new coronavirus numbers is due to an increase in cases, not because of more testing,Admiral Dr. Brett Giroir, assistant secretary for health for the US Department of Health and Human Services said on Thursday.
There is no question that the more testing you get, the more you will uncover but we do believe this is a real increase in cases, because the percent positivitys are going up. So, this is real increases in cases, Giroir told the House Select Committee on Coronavirus.
Giroir the US we did flatten the curve earlier during the pandemic, but we are not flattening the curve right now, the curve is still going up.
Across the US, some states are doing better than others, Giroir said, four states are counting for about 50% of our new cases, and they're very concerning to all in public health.
Those states are California, Arizona, Texas and Florida which all posted record new cases this week, according to Johns Hopkins data.
Giroir, who has recently been critical of younger generations said, we really do believe the current outbreak is primarily due to under 35s, with a lot of gatherings and not appropriate protection like masks.
Allegheny County in Pennsylvania identified 233 new cases of Covid-19 overnight into Thursday morning, the communications director for the county executive, Amie Downs, told CNN.
The previous high since the mid-June surge had been Wednesdays count of 110 new cases.
There are four new hospitalizations but no change in deaths from the day before, Downs said. The median age in new cases is 29, the same as it was on Wednesday.
It is too early to know exactly where the cases originated from, but Downs said many are from community spread.
The White House Fourth of July party will observe social distancing guidelines for guests, most of whom will be front line workers and their families, including law enforcement, doctors, nurses, and first responders, White House spokesman Judd Deere tells CNN.
To ensure the health and safety of those attending, social distancing will be observed and facial coverings and personal hand sanitizers will be provided, Deere said.
Another White House official confirmed to CNN that each guest will be handed a packet upon entry containing a mask, hand wipes, and sanitizer.
Additionally, the official says White House staff waiting on guests will be using multiple disposable masks and gloves, to be constantly tossed out and reapplied throughout the event.
Theevent will be held on the South Lawn, starting at 6:00 p.m. ET, a precursor to the flyover festivities and fireworks.
The Florida Department of Health is reporting 10,109 additional coronavirus cases, bringing the state total to 169,106, according to data released by the state.
Today's numbers mark a new record daily high of infections in the state of Florida since the start of the pandemic.The previous record was set on Saturday, when the start reported just more than 9,500 new cases.
New York City Public Schools will open in September, Mayor Bill de Blasio said during today's Covid-19 presser.
The mayor said schools will have a maximum number of students who can attend school in September based on space they can convert to learning areas that supports social distancing.
In some cases where all students cant attend class, they may have staggering schedules, the mayor said.
Remember: Ultimately, the decision will be made by the governor on whether schools will open in the fall.
Schools are still in the process of putting together back to school plans, New York City Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza said during the press conference.
At least 22 additional streets will be opened to restaurants to use for outdoor seating, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
This will add about 2.62 additional miles for restaurants to have seating.
This will take place across all five boroughs on Friday nights and weekends, those days were picked because they are busy days for going out, de Blasio said.
We are very excited, de Blasio said.
More context: The decision was made yesterday to not allow indoor dining in New York City when the city moves to phase 3 of reopening next week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.
When asked about a national mandate on masks in an interview on CNBC, Vice President Mike Pence responded: I dont think theres a need for a national mandate.
The President also said yesterday he does not think a mandate for masks is needed.
Pence noted that Trump instructed him to make sure that states which are seeing a rise in the number of coronavirus cases have everything that they need.
Were going to stay with these states that are seeing rising cases every step of the way, Pence said.
Pence said that the administration supports governors who are pausing reopening, however, Pence also said but were going to keep opening up America again.
PPE supplies are strong, testing is strong, more therapeutic medicines are available every day, Pence claimed.
Meanwhile, a growing number of US states across the country have mandated the use of masks and face coverings while in public.
With many states starting to lift coronavirus restrictions, more people are venturing out in public, but thenumber of cases is still risingin nearly half of them.
Read more about the states requiring people to wear masks when out in public:
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said Thursday that the Trump administration is considering whether to give money to schools to better equip them to be ready for classes to begin in the fall.
Were working with schools and universities. And I think in most cases, schools will be able to open safely. Some schools will need to spend money. One of the things well look at in CARES 4 is if we need to give money to schools to properly equip their areas, Mnuchin said in the White House briefing room.
Mnuchin said the administration would absolutely support the legislation if it included funding for schools.
We want to make sure that kids are safe and that if there is money that schools need to spend to safely have people in classrooms, social distance, spread things out, change hours these are all the things were looking at, he added.