The World Health Organization confirmed there is "emerging evidence" of airborne transmission of the coronavirus following the publication of a letter Monday signed by 239 scientists that urged the agency to be more forthcoming about the likelihood that people can catch the virus from droplets floating in the air.
Dr. Benedetta Alleganzi, WHO Technical Lead for Infection Prevention and Control, said during a briefing Tuesday, that the agency has discussed and collaborated with many of the scientists who signed the letter.
"We acknowledge that there is emerging evidence in this field, as in all other fields regarding the Covid-19 virus and pandemic and therefore we believe that we have to be open to this evidence and understand its implications regarding the modes of transmission and also regarding the precautions that need to be taken," Alleganzi said.
Here's an update on all developments. Scroll or swipe further for in-depth coverage.
- More than 2.9 million cases and 131,480 deaths have been reported across the country so far, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. And the United States saw a record number of 60,021 new cases Tuesday. Across the nation, 35 states are seeing growing numbers of new cases from last week.
- Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro says he is confident that he will swiftly recover from the new coronavirus thanks to treatment with hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malaria drug that has not been proven effective against COVID-19.
- President Donald Trump launched an all-out effort pressing state and local officials to reopen schools this fall, arguing that some are keeping schools closed not because of the risks from the coronavirus pandemic but for political reasons.
- The reimposition of coronavirus lockdown measures in Serbia touched off violent clashes in the capital Belgrade that left at least 60 police and protesters hurt amid renewed warnings that the virus is still gathering pace.
- Australia grappled with a COVID-19 spike in the city of Melbourne that prepared on Wednesday for a second lockdown to contain the virus’ spread.
- Africa surpassed the half million mark of coronavirus infections according to figures released Wednesday by the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- The surge in coronavirus cases in Florida is creating fresh headaches for Republicans who are scrambling to raise money and quickly organize a political convention in the state after President Donald Trump abandoned plans to accept his party's nomination in Charlotte, North Carolina.
- With coronavirus cases surging in Florida, President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he’s “flexible” on the size of the Republican National Convention in Jacksonville.
- Seven-time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson has twice tested negative for the coronavirus and has been cleared to race Sunday at Kentucky Speedway.
For more summaries and full reports, please select from the articles below. Scroll further for maps and charts tracking the virus.
Treating the virus
'Desperation science' slows the hunt for coronavirus drugs
Desperate to solve the deadly conundrum of COVID-19, the world is clamoring for fast answers and solutions from a research system not built for haste.
The ironic, and perhaps tragic, result: Scientific shortcuts have slowed understanding of the disease and delayed the ability to find out which drugs help, hurt or have no effect at all.
As deaths from the coronavirus relentlessly mounted into the hundreds of thousands, tens of thousands of doctors and patients rushed to use drugs before they could be proved safe or effective. A slew of low-quality studies clouded the picture even more. Read the full story here:
Virus by the numbers
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