Health official warns lawmakers of wider coronavirus outbreak, Amazon tells its employees to defer all non-essential travel and it’s revealed the U.S. doesn’t have enough testing resources as 62 Americans have now tested positive for the disease

Friday, February 28, 2020
By Paul Martin

Health officials on Friday warned lawmakers there will be a wider coronavirus outbreak and that the U.S. doesn’t have enough testing resources to cope
Dr Anthony Fauci revealed the details in a closed-door briefing in the U.S. House of Representatives
Fauci is one of only four medical experts on the White House’s newly formed coronavirus taskforce headed by Vice President Mike Pence
It comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced two new cases of coronavirus in the U.S., bringing the total to 62
The new patients are American citizens repatriated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship that was docked in Japan for two weeks
Health officials have been scrambling to deal with the prospect of a widening coronavirus outbreak within the United States
Trump’s administration is facing mounting criticism over its response and handling of the outbreak

By EMILY CRANE and MARY KEKATOS
DAILYMAIL.COM
28 February 2020

Health officials have warned lawmakers there will be a wider coronavirus outbreak and says the U.S. doesn’t have enough testing resources to cope as the number of infected Americans jumps to 62.

Dr Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, revealed in a closed-door briefing in the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday that there would be many more coronavirus cases in the U.S., according to a source.

Fauci, who is one of only four medical experts on the White House’s newly formed coronavirus taskforce headed by Vice President Mike Pence, added that it was unlikely the virus would disappear next year and warned lawmakers the country didn’t have enough testing resources.

The doctor and the 14 other members of the taskforce have been ordered to coordinate their statements and public appearances with Pence regarding the U.S.’s handling of the coronavirus.

It comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced two new cases of coronavirus in the U.S. on Friday, bringing the total to 62. The new patients are American citizens repatriated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship that was docked in Japan for two weeks.

Health officials have been scrambling to deal with the prospect of a widening coronavirus outbreak within the United States and this week warned American to start preparing for a domestic acceleration of the virus that has infected more than 80,000 people worldwide and killed nearly 3,000.

The Trump administration is facing mounting criticism over its response to the outbreak as more countries continue to report new infections and global stock markets are on the brink of a free fall.

U.S. and global stocks plummeted this week as rattled investors braced for the prospect that a pandemic could further dent an already slowing world economy, increasing the pressure on governments to quickly respond to the crisis.

The S&P 500 index was down about 3% in late-morning trading on Friday, adding to the heavy losses it suffered in the previous four sessions this week. It is on track to notch its worst week since October 2008, during the global financial crisis.

President Donald Trump has defended his administration’s response to the crisis after saying earlier this week that the risk of coronavirus to Americans remained ‘very low’.

In tweets overnight, Trump said the coronavirus virus had spread ‘very slowly’ to the U.S.

Despite an explosion of cases in China over the past two months, the Trump administration only this week put in a request for $2.5 billion to aid in the response, an amount both Republicans and Democrats have said is too small.

Critics of the federal response say the U.S. squandered precious weeks by focusing too narrowly on keeping the coronavirus from crossing U.S. borders rather than marshalling resources to prepare American communities for a widespread domestic outbreak that officials now say was inevitable.

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