Coronavirus updates: CDC says people who test positive for covid-19 can still vote in person

Here are the latest developments:

As the presidential election collides with a global pandemic, the CDC says that people who are sick with the coronavirus can still vote in person on Tuesday.

In newly-updated guidance published Sunday, the agency says that voters who have tested positive or may have been exposed to the coronavirus should follow the standard advice to wear a mask, stay at least six feet away from others and sanitize their hands before and after voting. “You should also let poll workers know that you are sick or in quarantine when you arrive at the polling location,” the CDC’s website states.

For tens of thousands of Americans, that may be the only option: People who received their test results in the past few days missed the cutoff to request an absentee ballot in most states, and getting an exemption typically requires surmounting arduous logistical hurdles, as The Post previously reported. But the prospect of casting a ballot alongside someone who’s sick is unlikely to defuse the tension surrounding mask-wearing at polling places — something that remains optional in multiple states.

While turnout numbers and exit polls consume much of the national attention, the steady rise of new infections across the country shows no sign of abating. The United States reported more than 86,000 new coronavirus cases on Monday, pushing the total count to nearly 9.3 million, according to data tracked by The Post. Twelve states — Arkansas, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming — recorded record numbers of hospitalizations.

Rural areas are feeling the strain. In Utah, overwhelmed hospitals are repurposing pediatric beds for adult patients, and plan to soon start bringing in doctors who don’t typically work in hospitals, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

“We’re asking people to do things that they trained for, maybe when they were a resident, but they haven’t done in three years,” Russell Vinik, chief medical operations officer at University of Utah Health, told the paper on Monday.

Jacqueline Dupree contributed to this report.

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Test The Whole Country For Coronavirus : NPR

A man is tested for the coronavirus on Sunday in Košice, Slovakia, as part of a nationwide effort to test nearly everyone over age 10 for the virus.

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A man is tested for the coronavirus on Sunday in Košice, Slovakia, as part of a nationwide effort to test nearly everyone over age 10 for the virus.

Zuzana Gogova/Getty Images

Slovakia undertook a massive effort over the weekend: to test nearly all adults in the country for the coronavirus.

Amid a steep spike in cases, more than 3.6 million Slovaks were tested for the virus, according to Prime Minister Igor Matovic – that’s about two-thirds of the population.

Of those tested, 38,359 tested positive for the virus – 1.06%.

Antigen tests were used, rather than PCR tests. Antigen tests give results within minutes, but are less reliable than PCR testing. The tests were free, and conducted at some 5,000 testing sites around the country, with assistance from Slovakia’s military.

“We have made a great leap forward,” the prime minister, Igor Matovič, told reporters on Monday.

“But we should not think that because of this 1%, now all is fine. It is not,” he added, according to Agence France-Presse. “In reality, up to 2% of our inhabitants might be infected. It is not at all a good situation.”

Two regions of the country with the highest case numbers were tested the previous weekend — a pilot in which 91% of those eligible were tested. In that round of testing, 3.97% were found positive.

More tests are planned for next weekend, but districts with a positive incidence of less than 0.7 percent will be exempt.

Children under 10 are exempt from the tests. Those over 65 who spend much of their time at home, as well as other vulnerable groups, are also exempt.

For all others, the test is optional – but a strict 10-day quarantine is required for those who choose to not get tested, The Lancet reports. Anyone who tests positive must go into strict isolation at home or a state quarantine facility for 10 days. Police officers are doing spot checks during the three-week testing period, and those who have taken the test are given a certificate they can show to police. Those who are found breaking the quarantine or isolation rules can be fined 1650 euros (about $1,920).

One goal of the program is to keep the nation’s hospitals from becoming overwhelmed. Another is to avoid a severe lockdown. Schools have already been ordered to close for a month, amid closings of public venues and restrictions on indoor dining at restaurants.

Matovič said that the government’s scientific advisory team had recommended a three-week lockdown for all, rather than the testing program, but he said a lockdown would cause too much economic pain, according to The Lancet.

Some have been critical of the government’s plan.

Alexandra Brazinova, an epidemiologist at the Medical Faculty of Comenius University in Bratislava, worried

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Two thirds of Slovaks joined widely-watched blanket COVID test, 1% positive

TRENCIN, Slovakia (Reuters) – More than 3.6 million Slovaks – two thirds of the population – took part in a widely-watched nationwide coronavirus testing programme over the weekend, Prime Minister Igor Matovic said on Monday.

FILE PHOTO: A healthcare worker collects a swab sample from a person at a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) testing site during nationwide testing, in Trencin, Slovakia October 31, 2020. REUTERS/Radovan Stoklasa

The scheme to test the bulk of a country in two days is being studied by other nations looking for ways to slow the virus and avoid overwhelming their health systems.

A total of 38,359 people or 1.06% of those who took part tested positive and must quarantine, Matovic told a news conference.

“I deeply believe that this solution will work in Slovakia on the condition that those who received certification that they are negative will continue to act responsibly, and those who got a positive result will remain in quarantine with their families,” he added.

The premier has been pushing the programme as a decisive way to slow the spread of the virus and avoid a widespread lockdown.

It has faced opposition from some experts who say the antigen tests that Slovakia used – quicker but less accurate than standard PCR tests – are better suited for targeted programmes and need to run with other measures.

Matovic said the government was aware of those concerns but felt that even a 50% success rate in revealing infected people would help.

The weekend’s results showed that infection rates had dropped substantially in four districts where a pilot round was held a week ago, he added.

Children up to the age of 10 were exempt and testing was voluntary for others – but people who chose not to take part must go into quarantine.

“We had to have the test done, otherwise we would not get in here … unfortunately it is what it is,” said Patrik Kvasovec, a customer at the Laugaricio shopping centre in Trencin, north of Bratislava.

Compared with other parts of Europe, Slovakia recorded relatively few cases after the pandemic started spreading in March but infections have soared in recent weeks. The government has warned the increase could overwhelm hospitals.

Reporting by Jan Lopatka and Radovan Stoklasa; Editing by Alison Williams, Michael Kahn and Andrew Heavens

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Two Thirds of Slovaks Joined Widely-Watched Blanket COVID Test, 1% Positive | World News

By Radovan Stoklasa and Jan Lopatka

TRENCIN, Slovakia (Reuters) – More than 3.6 million Slovaks – two thirds of the population – took part in a widely-watched nationwide coronavirus testing programme over the weekend, Prime Minister Igor Matovic said on Monday.

The scheme to test the bulk of a country in two days is being studied by other nations looking for ways to slow the virus and avoid overwhelming their health systems.

A total of 38,359 people or 1.06% of those who took part tested positive and must quarantine, Matovic told a news conference.

“I deeply believe that this solution will work in Slovakia on the condition that those who received certification that they are negative will continue to act responsibly, and those who got a positive result will remain in quarantine with their families,” he added.

The premier has been pushing the programme as a decisive way to slow the spread of the virus and avoid a widespread lockdown.

It has faced opposition from some experts who say the antigen tests that Slovakia used – quicker but less accurate than standard PCR tests – are better suited for targeted programmes and need to run with other measures.

Matovic said the government was aware of those concerns but felt that even a 50% success rate in revealing infected people would help.

The weekend’s results showed that infection rates had dropped substantially in four districts where a pilot round was held a week ago, he added.

Children up to the age of 10 were exempt and testing was voluntary for others – but people who chose not to take part must go into quarantine.

“We had to have the test done, otherwise we would not get in here … unfortunately it is what it is,” said Patrik Kvasovec, a customer at the Laugaricio shopping centre in Trencin, north of Bratislava.

Compared with other parts of Europe, Slovakia recorded relatively few cases after the pandemic started spreading in March but infections have soared in recent weeks. The government has warned the increase could overwhelm hospitals.

(Reporting by Jan Lopatka and Radovan Stoklasa; Editing by Alison Williams, Michael Kahn and Andrew Heavens)

Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters.

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A Rapid Virus Test Falters in People Without Symptoms, Study Finds

Mr. Bryant, of Quidel, who received an early copy of the University of Arizona study, praised the results as “very, very good,” citing the Sofia’s ability to root out “people who are infectious.”

Quidel, which is running several studies of its own, does not yet have definitive results that show the Sofia works in people without Covid-19 symptoms. But “based on the data so far, it seems to be applicable to that population,” Mr. Bryant said of his company’s results.

Other experts advised caution.

Although C.T. values do tend to increase as virus levels diminish, exceptions to this trend exist — and there is no universal “magic-number cutoff” for infectiousness, Dr. Dien Bard said.

Failing to grow the coronavirus out of a person’s sample also does not guarantee that individual is not contagious to others, said Omai Garner, the associate director of clinical microbiology in the UCLA Health System, who was not involved in the study.

Several experts noted that the University of Arizona study did not track transmission among its participants, making it impossible to draw conclusions about how, and from whom, the virus spread.

Dr. Harris said that some of the concerns about the Sofia’s accuracy could be overcome with repeat testing. Screened frequently enough with a rapid test, infected people missed by one Sofia would probably be detected with the next, especially if the levels of virus in their bodies were rising, Dr. Harris said. He and his colleagues are now gathering data on University of Arizona athletes, who are tested daily, to investigate this possibility. Quidel has also partnered with the Pac-12 and Big Ten Conferences to conduct daily tests.

People with symptoms or known exposures to the coronavirus should still get the most precise and reliable tests available — those that use P.C.R., said Susan Butler-Wu, a clinical microbiologist at the University of Southern California who was not involved in the study. More data, she added, would be needed to figure out how rapid tests fit into the larger diagnostic landscape.

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Matip and Keita hand Liverpool fitness boost ahead of Atalanta test

(Reuters) – Joel Matip and Naby Keita have returned to Liverpool first-team training but manager Juergen Klopp is yet to decide if both will be available for Tuesday’s Champions League encounter with Italian side Atalanta.



Joel Matip wearing a football uniform: Premier League - Liverpool v Newcastle United


© Reuters/JASON CAIRNDUFF
Premier League – Liverpool v Newcastle United



a group of baseball players playing a football game: Premier League - Liverpool v Leeds United


© Reuters/PHIL NOBLE
Premier League – Liverpool v Leeds United

Matip is poised to hand Liverpool a timely fitness boost as Klopp hopes to navigate his squad through a central defence injury crisis, with both Fabinho and Virgil van Dijk out of contention.

Van Dijk underwent a successful knee surgery last week after damaging his ligaments against Everton.

Keita is also set to be part of the travelling group to Bergamo for Liverpool’s third match in Champions League Group D, but fellow midfielder Thiago Alcantara is yet to return to training.

“Naby and Joel trained yesterday with the team, full, Thiago didn’t. So, that’s the situation,” Klopp told a news conference.

“I have really no idea what I do with this information in the moment because yes, they trained, that’s good, it’s better than if they don’t train. But we have to see what we do with it.

“We have another day to make these decisions. A lot of players will be on the plane hopefully, and so decisions will be made late, late, late.”

Atalanta, renowned for their high-octane pressing style under coach Gian Piero Gasperini, defied expectations last season to reach the Champions League quarter-finals.

Klopp said Atalanta are Liverpool’s “biggest challenge in Europe so far” and compared the Italian outfit to Premier League’s Leeds United.

“With all Atalanta have done in the last few years, they are a settled team and they are very difficult to play against,” Klopp said.

“They are similar to Leeds in the way they set-up.

“They are a proper fighting unit. They have all our respect and I know how good they are.”

(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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Another 133 Positive Test Results In New Hampshire: Update

CONCORD, NH — The State Joint Information Center reported Sunday that another 133 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in New Hampshire, including 21 children.

The new positive test results were found after 7,122 polymerase chain reaction specimens were collected on Saturday with Friday’s count increased by about 1,500 with 575 tests pending for a positivity rate of 1.4 percent.

The median time period for test results is about two days, according to the state.

Forty of the new patients live in Rockingham County, 16 reside in Hillsborough County outside of Manchester and Nashua, 12 live in Merrimack County, and four live in Nashua.

Investigations on 10 more people remain underway.

Most of the new cases were female.

Thirty-eight people remain hospitalized and only one had no identified risk factors.

More than 23 percent of the state’s residents have been tested for COVID-19 with more than 622,000 tests implemented.

About 4,450 people are under public health monitoring in New Hampshire.

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Stop The Spread Of COVID-19

The COVID-19 virus is spread through respiratory droplets, usually through coughing and sneezing, and exposure to others who are sick or might be showing symptoms.

Health officials emphasize residents should follow these recommendations:

  • Avoid any domestic and international travel, especially on public transportation such as buses, trains, and airplanes.

  • Practice social distancing. Stay at least 6 feet from other people, including distancing while in waiting areas or lines.

  • When you can’t practice 6 feet of social distancing, wear a face covering.

  • Anyone who is told to self-quarantine and stay at home due to exposure to a person with confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 needs to stay home and not go out into public places.

  • If you are 60 years or older or have chronic and underlying health conditions, you need to stay home and not go out.

  • Avoid gatherings of 10 people or more.

  • Employers should work from home as much as possible.

  • There is increasing evidence that the virus can survive for hours or possibly days on surfaces. People should clean frequently touched surfaces, including door handles, grocery carts and grocery basket handles, etc.

Take the same precautions as you would if you were sick:

  • Stay home and avoid public places.

  • Wear a face covering.

  • Cover mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing.

  • Wash hands frequently.

  • Disinfect frequently touched surfaces.

More information from the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services about coronavirus can be found here on the department’s website.

Got a news tip? Send it to [email protected] View videos on Tony Schinella’s YouTube channel.

This article originally appeared on the Concord Patch

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Dozens of inmates test positive for virus at San Diego federal jail, defense attorneys say

Petco Park anchors downtown San Diego.
Downtown San Diego. (K.C. Alfred / San Diego Union-Tribune)

At least 56 inmates tested positive for the coronavirus last week at a privately run federal jail in downtown San Diego that houses mostly pretrial inmates, according to defense attorneys briefed on the matter.

The GEO Group, which contracts with the U.S. Marshals Service to operate the Western Region Detention Facility, is in the process of testing all inmates there “whether or not they are showing any symptoms,” according to Kathy Nester, executive director of Federal Defenders of San Diego.

“Today we received confirmation of a large number of positive tests arising from that ongoing testing,” Nester wrote in an email Friday.

She said 286 inmates were tested Thursday, and of those, 56 tests came back positive, 114 were negative and 116 were pending.

Another 221 tests were submitted Friday, with all of those results still pending, according to Nester.

She said information about the apparent coronavirus outbreak was provided in a Friday phone call with the Marshals Service, which gives Federal Defenders regular updates “advising us of our clients who have tested positive and when there are ongoing quarantines” at its facilities.

“We are extremely worried about the rate at which the coronavirus is spreading through our detention facilities and the impact that will have on our clients and the community at large,” Nester wrote.

A spokesperson for the GEO Group referred a request for comment to the marshals. Calls to the San Diego-area office of the marshals were not answered Friday.

According to the GEO Group, the Western Region Detention Facility can house up to 770 inmates and is accredited by two national correctional organizations.

In April, Voice of San Diego reported that inmates at the facility reported cramped conditions at the jail that did not allow for social distancing. According to the declaration cited in the report, written by Federal Defenders senior litigator Joshua Jones and signed March 31, inmates at the facility reported several other safety concerns, including a lack of hand sanitizer in housing units and a scarcity of soap.

A study published last month in the Annals of Epidemiology found that “jails are epicenters of COVID-19 transmission in the United States.”

The study’s authors wrote that jails “present an ideal setting for infections to spread” because “incarcerated individuals are at higher risk for infection due to unsanitary living conditions and inability to socially distance.” Additionally, the authors wrote that “correctional officers rarely have public health training, and correctional health systems are chronically underfunded.”

Two of the study’s authors, from Stanford University, said an outbreak inside a jail threatens the community outside because “the people who work there enter and leave every day. They can take the virus out into the community when they go home at night.”

The apparent outbreak at the Western Region Detention Facility follows an outbreak at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, another federal jail in downtown San Diego.

As of Friday, there were three confirmed COVID-19 cases among inmates at

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New Hampshire Reports Record High Positive COVID-19 Test Results

CONCORD, NH — Gov. Chris Sununu, R-NH, issued a weekend statement Saturday after state health officials reported the highest single day of new COVID-19 positive test results — 205, including 31 children.

The new test results were reported after 7,927 specimens were collected Friday and prior days of tests were updated slightly from previous reports. A little more than 1,100 test results are pending for a polymerase chain reaction test positivity rate of 1.6 percent.

“The situation here in New Hampshire remains very serious, the data shows that community transmission is increasing, and we expect cases to rise,” Sununu said. “We must all remain vigilant in our daily lives. As we enter these winter months, it will be more important than ever to wear your mask, practice social distancing, and maintain proper hand hygiene.”

Nearly a quarter of the new test results, 50, came from Rockingham County with 27 living in Hillsborough County outside of Manchester and Nashua, 19 residing in Nashua, and 13 living in Merrimack.

State officials are still investigating the residency of eight cases.

Fifty-three percent of the new positive test results were female.

The state reported that 42 people are currently hospitalizations while only one of the new cases has no identified risk factors.

Accumulatively, 11,084 people have contracted COVID-19 in New Hampshire with 1,338 currently infected and 9,263, 84 percent, having recovered from the virus.

The State Joint Information Center also announced the 483rd death in the New Hampshire — a woman who was 80 years of age or older and lived in a long-term care setting in Hillsborough County.

More than 345,000 people have been tested for the coronavirus with nearly 617,00 PCR tests being administered by the state and 4,400 people under public health monitoring.

More Possible Restaurant Exposures

Both state and Nashua health officials issued alerts during the past 24 hours about possible restaurant exposure to the public.

Nashua Public Health is investigating potential community exposure related to a person with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis at the Texas Roadhouse on 580 Amherst St. The potential community exposure occurred in the bar area between 3 and 10 p.m. on Oct. 22, and 11 a.m. to close on Oct. 23.

“The health and safety of our staff and customers is our top priority,” Eric Martin, the restaurant’s director of food safety. “We have been following CDC guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting our facility. We follow all reopening guidance for food service establishments from the state.”

Public health is investigating the situation and notifying any known close contacts directly but if you were at the restaurant during those dates, you should self-quarantine, monitor for symptoms — sore throat, congestion, runny nose, headache, muscle ache, fatigue, new loss of taste or smell, fever, cough, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea, and get tested.

State health officials said contact tracers were investigating another possible community exposure in Merrill’s Tavern and Stagecoach Grille at the Atkinson Resort & Country Club between 11 a.m. and 11:30

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Travelers to New York must test negative before and after they arrive

  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Saturday announced new measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 in the state of New York.
  • Those traveling to the state will need to test negative for the disease within three days of their trip and quarantine immediately upon entering. 
  • After three days, that traveler must also get a second test for COVID-19, and if it is negative, they will be permitted to cease quarantining, the state announced.
  • New Yorkers who are leaving the state for less than 24 hours do not need to obtain a test before returning to the state but must be tested within four days of returning to the state.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Saturday a new travel mandate for people who come to the state. 

Under the new rules, if an individual is traveling to New York, they must test negative for COVID-19 within three days of making their trip, the governor’s office said. Once they arrive in New York, they must quarantine for a three-day period before receiving an additional test for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. 

If the results of the second COVID-19 test are also negative, a person is permitted to end their period of quarantine. If an individual is traveling from New York to another state for a period fewer than 24 hours, they do not need to be tested before returning but must get tested within four days of returning to New York.

The Saturday announcement replaces a previous policy that required individuals to quarantine for a two-week period if they were coming to the state from a list of more than 40 states that did not meet criteria set by state officials. 

The change comes as the US deals with the latest wave of COVID-19 cases. On Friday, the US reported nearly 100,000 new cases of the virus: shattering the record for the most cases reported in a single day since the pandemic began.

 

While President Donald Trump has continued to blame the increase on an increase in testing for the disease, The COVID Tracking Project reported that the number of positive cases was rising more sharply than the number of tests administered, according to a previous Business Insider report.

While the state of New York saw the most severe outbreak of COVID-19 nationally, it was able to stem the spread of the virus in the spring and summer months. But as temperatures cool and cases spike across the US, cases in New York have also begun to rise.

The positive rate in the state over the past week is about 1.5% over the past week, according to data analyzed by Johns Hopkins University. While that’s lower than the 6.4% rate nationally over the past seven days, it’s higher than the end of summer when the rate in New York dipped below 1%. 

In “focus zones” — areas of the state where officials are

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