President Donald Trump on Friday hailed developments in the race for a vaccine for the resurgent coronavirus as he delivered his first public remarks since his defeat by President-elect Joe Biden, even as he refuses to concede the election.
Trump spoke from the the Rose Garden as the nation sets records for confirmed cases of COVID-19, and as hospitalizations near critical levels and fatalities climb to the highest levels since the spring. He said a vaccine would ship in “a matter of weeks" to vulnerable populations, though the Food and Drug Administration has not yet been asked to grant the necessary emergency approvals. In addition, there’s no information yet as to whether the vaccine worked in vulnerable populations or only in younger, healthier study volunteers.
Public health experts worry that Trump’s refusal to take aggressive action on the pandemic or to coordinate with the Biden team during the final two months of his presidency will only worsen the effects of the virus and hinder the nation’s ability to swiftly distribute a vaccine next year.
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Here's a look at more virus developments from the past day. Scroll further for the latest virus numbers.
- With the coronavirus coming back with a vengeance across the country, many governors and other elected officials are showing little appetite for imposing the kind of lockdowns and large-scale business closings seen last spring. Some also continue to resist issuing statewide mask rules.
- The S&P 500 closed at a record high on Friday as optimism built among investors that a coming vaccine for coronavirus will help end the shutdowns that have devastated the economy.
- California Gov. Gavin Newsom says he should not have attended a birthday dinner for a dozen people at the posh French Laundry restaurant last week, saying that he should have set a better example for a virus-fatigued state that is seeing steep increases in coronavirus cases.
- With COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations spiking, bus drivers and teachers in quarantine, students getting sick and the holidays looming, many school systems in the U.S. are making tough decision to cancel in-person learning. Schools in Europe are working hard to do the opposite.
Virus by the numbers: