Italy Reports 3 More Deaths In Lombardy; WHO Raises Global Alert Rating To “Very High”: Live Updates

Friday, February 28, 2020
By Paul Martin

by Tyler Durden
ZeroHedge.com
Fri, 02/28/2020

Summary:

Italy reports 3 deaths in Lombardy; nat’l toll now 21; total cases 821
British man becomes 6th ‘Diamond Princess’ passenger to die
Two Japanese dogs tested positive for coronavirus
Mulvaney says school closures, transit disruptions may happen in US
Dr. Tedros said Friday that there’s no evidence of ‘community outbreak’
Mexico confirms 1st virus case
Fauci warns virus could take ‘two years’ to develop
Kudlow says “no higher priority” than the “health of the American people
Toronto confirms another case
WHO says 20 vaccines in development
St. Louis Fed’s Bullard pours cold water on market hopes
Netherlands confirms 2 more
United cuts flights to Japan
Advisor to CDC says shortage of tests in US creating a “bottleneck”
Nigeria confirms first case in sub-saharan africa
SK reports more than 1,000 new cases in under 48 hours
Italy cases surpass 700
WHO says virus will ‘soon be in all countries’
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Update (1210ET): Italian health authorities just confirmed three more deaths in Lombardy, bringing the national death toll to 21, while the number of confirmed cases rises by nearly 200 to 821.

Italy now has the third-largest death toll, behind only Iran and mainland China.

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Update (1145ET): Reports are claiming a vote on the emergency spending bill to combat the virus could come as soon as next week, which is earlier than the week of March 9, as was previously reported.

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Update (1130ET): The People’s Daily reports that Beijing is tightening its “entrant management” – which we believe means it’s once again restricting who can and cannot enter the city – as the government continues to implement measures to suppress outbreaks even as Beijing insists the virus has finally been ‘contained’.

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Update (1120ET): Infectious-disease expert Anthony Fauci, who has been one of the federal government’s main spokespeople on the timeline for developing a vaccine, said Friday that it could take “up to two years” for a vaccine to be market-ready, according to Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Dem of Illinois. Notably, that’s a longer timeline than the 1 year to 18 months that Fauci and HHS Secretary Alex Azar shared earlier in the week.

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Update (1115ET): Ontario has confirmed another coronavirus case in Toronto, the first since an Iranian passenger aboard an Air Canada flight to Montreal tested positive earlier this week.

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Update (1100ET): As the left attacks the Trump Administration’s virus response, Trump has dispatched one of his top TV defenders, top economic advisor Larry Kudlow, to drive home the message that the White House has “no higher priority” than “the health of the American people.”

Kudlow added that 6 of the 15 coronavirus patients in the US have been released.

His statement follows a barrage of criticism from Trump’s political opponents claiming his decision to task Mike Pence and Alex Azar with leading the containment effort suggests the president is m ore concerned about the economic fallout, and protecting his own image.

Speaking to the press corp., Kudlow sounded less like he was trying to jawbone the markets higher and more like he was trying to understand why the selloff has become so ‘overdone’, as he sees it.

The WHO said in a report published Friday morning that the global community “is not yet ready to implement measures that have contianed the coronavirus in China,” while Dr. Tedros reiterated his view that the “window of opportunity” for stopping a ‘pandemic’ is narrowing every day.

More importantly, Kudlow insisted that the outbreak wouldn’t have much of a long-term impact on the market.

“I just don’t think at this point that it’s going to have much of an impact,” Kudlow said.

Asked what advice he would give a friend planning a cruise, Kudlow responded “stay home.”

Questions about yesterday’s Trump news presser prompted Kudlow to praise the president – saying “the way he is handling this” will help his reelection. He also said he’s not expecting any “precipitous action” on China tariffs.

As for complaints about Pence asking all CDC officials to route all decisions and every through his office, Kudlow insisted that the administration wasn’t trying to “stifle” or cover up anyone.

“No one is being stifled, no one is being told what to say…we are all ears we want to hear what they have to say,” Kudlow said. “I think you have to coordinate.”

Countries need to understand that they must contain the virus, even if it requires seemingly draconian measures, and while coronavirus cases might increase in the US, it’s unlikely that they will “skyrocket.”

Finally, the WHO has raised its global alert rating to “Very High” from “High” as it continues to do and say everything that would suggest COVID-19 has become a global pandemic, if if the WHO refuses to acknowledge it (with reason).

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