Governor urges New Mexicans to avoid Halloween gatherings

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Saturday said the spread of coronavirus is out of control in New Mexico as she urged residents to stay home and avoid gathering with others to celebrate Halloween.

“Please — do your part to protect yourself and your fellow New Mexicans by celebrating a COVID-SAFE Halloween,” the Democratic governor’s office said in a Facebook post. “Stay home. Do not gather with others.”

State officials on Saturday reported 592 additional known virus cases and 11 additional deaths but said the case data for the day was incomplete due to a technical problem.


“Due to a technical disruption of the electronic laboratory reporting system, the following data reflects only a partial total for today’s case update,” state officials said in a statement. “The delayed results will be included in the state’s reporting as soon as they are received and confirmed.”

The additional cases and deaths reported Saturday increased the state’s totals to 46,490 cases and 1,018 deaths.

The state reported over 1,000 additional cases on Friday when it also reported a single-day record of 13 deaths and when the state’s death toll exceeded 1,000.

Lujan Grisham on Friday ordered flags to fly at half-staff starting Monday for a week of mourning. She called the toll “an unfathomable tragedy,” saying the drumbeat of a few more deaths every day should not diminish the acute feeling of loss.

State health officials also renewed their pleas that people adhere to the public health order, which calls for residents to stay home whenever possible, limit contact with others and wear face coverings, among other things.

Coronavirus related hospitalizations reached 354 on Saturday, the ninth consecutive day the state has set a record for that metric.

State officials and administrators from some of the largest hospital systems in New Mexico have warned that the health care system could be overloaded if the trends continue.

The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.

The additional 11 deaths reported Saturday included six in Dona Ana County, four in Bernalillo County and one in Otero County.

The additional cases included 187 in Bernalillo County, 127 in Dona Ana County, 41 in Chaves County, 33 in Santa Fe County, 31 in Sandoval County, 22 in McKinley County and 17 in San Juan County.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death. The vast majority of people recover.

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Ontario fitness industry urges members to pressure Ford government to allow gyms to reopen

Goodlife Fitness is urging its members to pressure the Ontario government to allow gyms to reopen in parts of the province where they’ve been forced to close because of rising COVID-19 cases.

In an email sent to members across the province Tuesday, the fitness giant is encouraging its members to write a letter to their local MPP, Premier Doug Ford and Health Minister Christine Elliott among others.

“Between mandated shutdowns, capacity restrictions, and ongoing questions about the safety of fitness facilities, our industry is facing the most difficult time in its history,” the email reads.

Jason Sheridan, senior vice-president of operations at Goodlife, said the email was sent to more than 175,000 members.

The campaign is led by the Fitness Industry Council of Canada. Other businesses who are part of the industry council will also take part.

“Through this campaign . . . we are keen to advance the discussions with the Ontario government and public health and to help co-create any enhanced guidelines for gyms across Ontario,” Sheridan told the Star.

“We are open to navigating this situation together and working to develop solutions that would allow us to continue to invest in the health and wellness of Ontarians.”

The letter, sent with the subject line Stand Up for Fitness, discusses the impact the shutdown has had on the province’s fitness industry, citing the benefits of physical benefits on mental health during the pandemic and reducing the strain on local health-care systems as a result.

As cases spiked in the province, and concerns that group activity in indoor spaces may be adding to the transmission of the virus, Ford ordered the closure of all gyms in Ottawa and parts of the GTA on Oct. 10.

In Quebec, a group of fitness centre owners says its members are no longer planning to open Thursday in defiance of that government’s lockdown orders.

On Monday, a coalition of more than 250 gym owners threatened to open their doors this week, prompting a warning from Premier Francois Legault that they and their clients would be fined.

Gym owners in Ontario have not gone that far, but are still heated over the impact from the temporary closure.

The office of Lisa MacLeod, Ontario minister of heritage, sport and tourism, acknowledges the struggles the fitness industry is going through but says the government will continue to follow public health advice.

“This is a difficult time for so many businesses that are already struggling, which is why we are working hard to make $300 million available as soon as possible to cover fixed costs,” minister spokesperson Dakota Brasier said.

“We will continue to take prudent and progressive action to reopen based on expert public health advice as soon as it’s safe to do so.”

Sweat and Tonic, a Toronto boutique fitness studio is part of an online petition in collaboration with the Ontario Independent Fitness Studios Association and 300 other businesses to advocate for the re-opening of fitness studios.

Morgan Thomas, general manager at Sweat and

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The Latest: Ky. gov urges more care in hardest-hit counties

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky’s governor is urging people in the state’s counties hit hardest by the pandemic to take stricter steps to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Gov. Andy Beshear stressed Monday that he is only offering recommendations — not mandates.

Beshear says people should avoid hosting or attending gatherings of any size. He says employers should allow employees to work from home when possible, and noncritical government offices should operate virtually. Also, he says, in-person shopping should be reduced, with people opting to order online for pickup.

The recommendations are aimed at the 55 counties — nearly half of all Kentucky counties — with the highest infection rates. Those counties have a daily average of at least 25 new virus cases per 100,000 residents.

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— Trump to intensify his campaign schedule despite U.S. virus surge, new White House outbreak

— Wary of angering public with restrictions, Iran has few ways to contain virus

— Nations across Europe enact more sweeping restrictions to try to slow surging infection rates

— Mexico acknowledges far more deaths than officially confirmed, saying 139,153 now attributable to COVID-19

— El Paso, Texas imposes curfew as virus cases overwhelm hospitals

— COVID-19 cases surge in north-central West Virginia county, shutting down schools and sports

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— Follow AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker is again imploring people in his state to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus, which can cause the sometimes deadly COVID-19.

During his daily briefing Monday, delivered from the OSF St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria, Pritzker said there is a “COVID storm on the rise, and we have to get prepared.”

Pritzker spoke two days after Illinois officials reported 6,131 coronavirus infections, which was a new single-day high for the state.

His public health director reported another 4,729 fresh cases Monday, with 17 deaths from COVID-19.

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JACKSON, Miss. — Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves is expanding a mask mandate to seven additional counties to try to control the spread of the coronavirus as cases increase rapidly in some areas.

His new order takes effect Wednesday and lasts until at least Nov. 11.

Sixteen of Mississippi’s 82 counties will now have a requirement for people to wear face coverings when they are indoors away from their homes. Social gatherings in those 16 counties also will be limited to 10 people indoors or 50 people outdoors.

Reeves says the restrictions are in counties that have had at least 200 confirmed virus cases or at least 500 confirmed cases per 100,000 residents during a recent two-week period.

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WASHINGTON — The White House coronavirus response coordinator said Monday that North Dakota’s capital city had the worst COVID-19 protocols she’s seen in her travels around the country after she spent a day looking around.

Dr. Deborah Birx, whose tour has taken her to nearly 40 states, said

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South Korea urges people to get flu vaccinations despite concerns about deaths

South Korean commuters wear protective masks as they crowd after getting off the subway during rush hour on September 15, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea.

Chung Sung-Jun | Getty Images

South Korea urged citizens to get vaccinated against influenza and reduce the chances of an outbreak that coincides with the battle on the coronavirus, as it kicked off free inoculations for the last eligible group.

Public anxiety over the safety of flu vaccines has surged after at least 48 people died this month following vaccinations, while, last month, about 5 million doses had to be disposed of after not being stored at recommended temperatures.

Authorities have said they found no direct link between the deaths and the flu shots and have sought to reassure South Koreans about the safety of the vaccines against flu, a disease that kills at least 3,000 each year.

“Vaccination offers far greater benefits compared to side effects, and both the WHO and domestic and overseas experts agree,” Health Minister Park Neung-hoo told a briefing on Sunday, in a reference to the World Health Organization.

Last year, more than 1,500 elderly people died within seven days of receiving flu vaccines, but those deaths were not linked to the vaccinations, the government said.

As South Korea presses on with its inoculations, southeast Asia’s tiny city state of Singapore became one of the first nations this week to call a temporary halt to the use of two influenza vaccines, as a precaution.

Singapore has reported no deaths linked to flu vaccinations.

South Korea ordered 20% more flu vaccines this year to ward off the prospect of what it calls a “twindemic” of concurrent major flu and coronavirus outbreaks in winter.

At least 1,154 instances of adverse reactions have been reported from among more than 9.4 million people inoculated since the effort began in September.

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South Korea urges people to get flu vaccinations despite death tolls

By Sangmi Cha

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea urged citizens to get vaccinated against influenza and reduce the chances of an outbreak that coincides with the battle on the coronavirus, as it kicked off free inoculations for the last eligible group.

Public anxiety over the safety of flu vaccines has surged after at least 48 people died this month following vaccinations, while, last month, about 5 million doses had to be disposed of after not being stored at recommended temperatures.

Authorities have said they found no direct link between the deaths and the flu shots and have sought to reassure South Koreans about the safety of the vaccines against flu, a disease that kills at least 3,000 each year.

“Vaccination offers far greater benefits compared to side effects, and both the WHO and domestic and overseas experts agree,” Health Minister Park Neung-hoo told a briefing on Sunday, in a reference to the World Health Organization.

Last year, more than 1,500 elderly people died within seven days of receiving flu vaccines, but those deaths were not linked to the vaccinations, the government said.

As South Korea presses on with its inoculations, southeast Asia’s tiny city state of Singapore became one of the first nations this week to call a temporary halt to the use of two influenza vaccines, as a precaution.

Singapore has reported no deaths linked to flu vaccinations.

South Korea ordered 20% more flu vaccines this year to ward off the prospect of what it calls a “twindemic” of concurrent major flu and coronavirus outbreaks in winter.

At least 1,154 instances of adverse reactions have been reported from among more than 9.4 million people inoculated since the effort began in September.

(Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus: https://graphics.reuters.com/world-coronavirus-tracker-and-maps)

(Reporting by Sangmi Cha; Editing by Miyoung Kim and Clarence Fernandez)

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The Latest: UN chief urges G20 to unite on coronavirus fight

UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. chief says it’s “very frustrating” that leaders of the 20 major industrialized nations didn’t come together in March and establish a coordinated response to grapple with the coronavirus in all countries as he proposed.

The result, he says, is every country is taking its own sometimes contradictory actions, and the virus is moving “from east to west, north to south,” with second waves of infections now affecting many countries.

Ahead of the Group of 20 summit next month, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in an interview with The Associated Press that he hopes the international community now understands “they need to be much more coordinated in fighting the virus.”

Guterres says the United Nations also will be “strongly advocating” during the G-20 summit for a guarantee that when a vaccine is available, “it becomes indeed available and affordable for everyone, everywhere.”

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— France extends curfew to 38 regions because of coronavirus surge

— African health officials expect WHO distribution of rapid virus tests

— Oxford vaccine trial continues amid death report

— Britain offering financial help for bars, pubs and restaurants struggling because of restrictions due to the coronavirus.

— Czech Republic enters second lockdown to avoid health system collapse. New measures include closing stores, shopping malls and hotels.

— Photographer in Dubai providing free photo shoots to laid-off expats forced to leave the skyscraper-studded Persian Gulf city because of the pandemic.

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Follow all of AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea has reported 155 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus, its highest daily jump in more than 40 days as officials struggle to stem transmissions at hospitals and nursing homes.

The figures announced Friday brought the national caseload to 25,698, including 455 deaths. Officials say most of the new cases were local transmissions and primarily in the Seoul region, where hundreds of infections have been tied to a handful of hospitals and nursing homes.

A nursing home in Namyangju, east of Seoul, has emerged as the latest cluster of infections, with officials putting the facility under isolation after more than 30 workers and residents tested positive. Around 120 infections have been linked to a hospital in nearby Gwangju.

Friday’s daily jump was the highest since Sept. 11 when 176 new infections were reported.

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BOISE, Idaho — A regional health board in northern Idaho has voted narrowly to repeal a local mask mandate, acting moments after hearing how the region’s hospital has been overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients and is looking at sending people as far away as Seattle for care.

The board heard Thursday that the hospital in Coeur d’Alene reached 99% capacity the previous day, even after doubling up patients in rooms and buying more beds. The board in Kootenai County then voted 4-3 to end the mask mandate. Kootenai is the third most populous county in conservative Idaho.

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Chelsea star Ziyech provides fitness update & urges bench-warming Van de Beek to be patient at Man Utd

Hakim Ziyech has spoken of where he sees himself fitting into Chelsea’s attacking plans as he continues to work towards full fitness, while also urging former Ajax team-mate Donny van de Beek to remain calm at Manchester United despite a lack of playing time.

Having established himself as one of Europe’s top attackers during his time in the Netherlands, Ziyech saw the Blues swoop to secure his services in a £33 million ($43m) deal following a transfer ban.

The Morocco international was subsequently joined by other high-profile signings such as Kai Havertz and Timo Werner at Stamford Bridge, although the latter pair have seen far more game time due to Ziyech having been contending with injuries.

Asked to comment on when he will be back to full fitness, the 27-year-old told the press: “For me it can’t come soon enough, but if you think realistically I’ve been out for a while, the season stopped early for me last year, so I didn’t play for a while as well.

“The injury came at an unlucky time, so for me it’s now important just to get rhythm back and build up everything again. I know it will take some time, but for me it couldn’t be soon enough.

“It is what it is right now, it’s most important for me to build and get to 100 per cent fitness, and that’s what we’re working to do.”

Asked what position he is likely to take up, the versatile attacker added: “Two different options, maybe three, depending on where the coach needs me. For me it doesn’t matter where I am playing, I just love to play the game, and it doesn’t matter where.”

Another former Ajax man has also found playing time hard to come by in the Premier League, with Manchester United’s summer signing Van de Beek having spent most of his time warming the bench at Old Trafford despite a big-money move.

Ziyech is unconcerned, however, and feels it will take time for the Netherlands international to fully adjust to his new surroundings before showing fans what he is truly capable of.

“We spoke in the beginning when he moved to Man United, but we didn’t speak about his situation,” Ziyech said. “I think he will need time as well, he’s come from a different country, a different style of play.

“And I know for sure it will take some time for him as well to get used to everything and then I know for sure he will bring quality to the squad over there.

“For him the most important thing now is to stay calm.”

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Fitness influencer Tammy Hembrow urges women to ‘check your boobies’

Fitness influencer Tammy Hembrow urges women to ‘check your boobies’ after hosting a luncheon for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Tammy Hembrow has urged women to ‘check your boobies’ for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

In a post on Instagram on Thursday, the 26-year-old fitness influencer revealed she’d hosted a breast cancer awareness luncheon with her activewear line, Saski Collection.

‘@saskicollection luncheon for breast cancer awareness. Thank you to everyone that came to support such an important cause,’ she wrote. 

Stay vigilant: Tammy Hembrow (pictured) has urged women to 'check your boobies' for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Stay vigilant: Tammy Hembrow (pictured) has urged women to ‘check your boobies’ for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

‘On top of Saski’s $10k donation we donated $5 from every sale yesterday.’

She added: ‘Ps Go check ur boobiesss ladies!!’

Tammy also included a series of photos from the event, including the cheeky breast-shaped cupcakes on offer.

Details: In a post on Instagram on Thursday, the 26-year-old fitness influencer revealed she'd hosted a breast cancer awareness luncheon with her activewear line, Saski Collection

Simply the breast: Tammy also included a series of photos from the event, including the cheeky breast-shaped cupcakes on offer

Details: In a post on Instagram on Thursday, the 26-year-old fitness influencer revealed she’d hosted a breast cancer awareness luncheon with her activewear line, Saski Collection

She opted for an all-white outfit, stepping out in a skirt with a split up one side and a sleeveless top.

The high-profile businesswoman accessorised with a thick lace-up belt around her midsection and a small white handbag.

Her long blonde hair was pulled back tightly in a high ponytail, and she wore glamorous makeup, focusing on bronzed skin and thick eyelashes. 

'@saskicollection luncheon for breast cancer awareness. Thank you to everyone that came to support such an important cause,' she wrote on Instagram

‘@saskicollection luncheon for breast cancer awareness. Thank you to everyone that came to support such an important cause,’ she wrote on Instagram

Last week, Tammy lashed out at trolls who claimed she’s ‘just an Instagram model’. 

‘Everyone thinks I’m just an Instagram model, yet I have multiple businesses and I am a mum,’ she told The Courier Mail last week. 

The single mum-of-two pointedly added: ‘I am busy.’

Fighting words: Last week, Tammy lashed out at trolls who claimed she's 'just an Instagram model'. 'I am busy,' she told The Courier Mail

Fighting words: Last week, Tammy lashed out at trolls who claimed she’s ‘just an Instagram model’. ‘I am busy,’ she told The Courier Mail

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Kansas gov. again urges statewide mask mandate

MISSION, Kan. — Kansas Gov. Laura is again calling for a statewide mask mandate as coronavirus infections climb in rural parts of the state that don’t require face covering.

Kelly said Wednesday that two-thirds of the state’s confirmed cases now are outside the Wichita and Kansas City region.

Over the summer, the governor issued an order requiring Kansas residents to wear masks, but more than 90 counties chose to opt out. Kelly says she plans to discuss with legislative leaders on working toward a bipartisan requirement with more teeth.

The state health department says Kansas had 1,488 new confirmed coronavirus cases since Monday, an increase of 2% that brought the total number of infections for the pandemic to 74,456. Kansas has had 952 deaths from COVID-19.

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— Spain reaches 1 million cases of coronavirus

— North Dakota Republican governor calls National Guard to help with test results

— CDC redefines coronavirus close contact, adds brief encounters

— Next up in hunt for COVID-19 vaccine: Testing shots in kids. Pfizer received permission last week to test its vaccine in U.S. kids as young as 12.

— Boston schools will switch to all-remote learning in response to rising coronavirus cases in the city.

— Brazil President overrules own health minister, rejecting purchase of 46 million doses of a potential coronavirus vaccine tested in Sao Paulo state.

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Follow all of AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Alabama’s lieutenant governor, who has called the state face mask order a government overstep during the pandemic, says he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth said Wednesday that so far, he has no symptoms. He said he took the test earlier in the day after being notified that a member of his Sunday school group had been infected.

Ainsworth has criticized mandatory mask orders, but he personally wears one. He says that “because I follow social distancing rules and wear a mask both in church and in my daily interactions, the positive result shows that even those of us who are the most cautious can be at risk.”

Data show coronavirus virus infections appear to be rising in Alabama again weeks of improvement.

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SANTA FE, N.M. — Health officials in New Mexico have reported a single-day record of 827 newly confirmed coronavirus cases.

The increase reported Wednesday raised the state’s total of confirmed cases during the pandemic to 38,715. There have been 950 deaths linked to COVID.19.

New Mexico’s previous one-day high for new coronavirus infections was 819 reported Friday.

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BEAVER, Pa. — A large, for-profit Pennsylvania nursing home where dozens of residents died of COVID-19 has been sued over allegations that it failed to take basic steps to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Brighton Rehabilitation and Wellness Center in Beaver County near the Ohio border was among the hardest-hit nursing homes in the state. It had

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Modi urges Indians to keep up masks, distancing

NEW DELHI — Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi says laxity could lead to a new surge in infections, as authorities reported 54,044 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, taking the overall tally past 7.6 million.

The Health Ministry on Wednesday also reported 717 additional deaths for a total of 115,914.

The death toll and new cases have been on the decline in India since last month. But Modi is urging people to continue wearing masks and observing social distancing until a vaccine is available.

Health officials have warned about the potential for the virus to spread during the ongoing religious festival season that includes huge gatherings in temples and shopping districts.


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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— Leaders in US, Europe divided on response to surging virus

— From Detroit to Oakland, pandemic threatens urban renewal

— McConnell warns White House against COVID relief deal

— Some teenage girls in Nairobi have turned to sex work to help feed their families. They cannot remember how many men they have had to sleep with since their schools closed this year.

— South Korea may be one of the world’s most wired nations, but remote learning is a challenge for many students and is particularly worrisome in a country so obsessed with education that 70% of high school graduates attend university.

— British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is imposing strict coronavirus restrictions on England’s second-largest urban area, after talks with officials in Greater Manchester collapsed over how much financial aid should be handed to people whose livelihoods will be hit by the new measures.

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Follow all of AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

MELBOURNE, Australia — Australian authorities say they’re treating a COVID-19 case in the city of Melbourne as a rare reinfection.

The only coronavirus case reported in the former hot spot of Victoria state on Tuesday had also tested positive to COVID-19 in July.

Victoria Premier Dan Andrews said Wednesday an expert panel had decided to classify the case as a reinfection rather than shedding viral remnants of the July infection.

Andrews says the classification reflected “an abundance of caution” rather than conclusive evidence. He assumed further testing would be conducted into the case in search of a definitive result.

Melbourne has been in lockdown since early July, but restrictions in Australia’s second-largest city are easing this week as daily infection tallies remain low.

Victoria reported three new cases on Wednesday. The state’s second wave peaked at 725 new infections in a day in early August.

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand — Eighteen fishing crewmen who last week flew to New Zealand from Moscow have tested positive for the coronavirus, underscoring the difficulty New Zealand faces in trying to import needed workers while remaining virtually virus free.

A total of 235 crew from Russia and Ukraine were on the flight chartered by three fishing companies. Before leaving Moscow, they were supposed to have self-isolated

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