Coronavirus updates: Houston cases and world headlines for May 6

Here is a look at the latest COVID-19 headlines and updates for Wednesday, May 6.

HOUSTON — We are continuing to track the latest headlines and updates regarding the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Get the latest updates and top headlines in our live blog below.

This morning’s top headlines

The latest numbers

As of Wednesday morning: There are 3,679,544 million confirmed cases worldwide. There are 257,793 deaths reported worldwide and 1,205,595 recoveries, according to Johns Hopkins at this time. The U.S. leads the world with 1,204,475 confirmed cases. Texas Health and Human Services reports that as of Monday afternoon we had 33,369 COVID-19 cases in the state with 906 deaths and an estimated 16,791 recoveries. There are 7,128 confirmed cases in Houston and Harris County combined as of yesterday’s last update, up about 200 from the day before. You can view the chart of daily new case reports below for Harris County and Houston combined:

Latest COVID-19 updates

Here are the latest updates from around the Houston area and the world (all times are Central/Houston time):’

MAY 6 5:30 a.m. — Spain to declare state of mourning over virus | Spanish Prime Minster Pedro Sánchez says that his government will declare a national state of mourning for the more than 25,800 deaths the European nation has suffered from the coronavirus pandemic. Sánchez is appearing before Spain’s Parliament on Wednesday to ask for a fourth two-week extension of the state of emergency that has allowed his government to apply a strict lockdown that has reined in a savage COVID-19 outbreak. It appears he will have the support despite losing the backing of the main opposition party.

Spanish health authorities reported 244 new deaths over the previous 24 hours on Wednesday, taking the toll of virus fatalities to 25,857. Get more national/world updates here.

MAY 6 5 a.m. — Blue Angels to fly over Houston | Today is the day, and Houston’s skies will be clear just in time for the show! The flyover will enter the Houston area at about 12:30 p.m. starting from the north. Get the details here.

MAY 6 4:40 a.m. — States with few coronavirus cases get big share of relief aid |  Alaska, Hawaii, Montana and Wyoming are not epicenters of the coronavirus pandemic. Yet these four states scored big this spring when Congress pumped out direct federal aid, while the two hardest-hit states, New York and New Jersey, got comparatively little given the vast numbers of cases and deaths they have seen. (AP) Read the full story here

MAY 6 4:13 a.m. — EU forecasts ‘recession of historic proportions’ this year | The European Union is predicting “a recession of historic proportions this year” due to the impact of the coronavirus. It released Wednesday its first official forecast of the damage the disease has inflicted on the bloc’s economy. The 27-nation EU economy is predicted to contract by 7.5% this year, before growing by about 6% in 2021. The group of 19 nations using the euro as their currency will see a record decline of 7.75% this year, and grow by 6.25% in 2021, the European Commission said in its Spring economic forecast. More than 1.1 million people have contracted the virus across Europe and over 137,000 have died. (AP) Get more national/world updates here.

MAY 6 3:40 a.m. — US senators seek probe of veterans homes after coronavirus deaths | A group of U.S. senators is seeking an investigation into the Department of Veterans Affairs’ oversight of homes for aging veterans amid a spate of coronavirus deaths at the state-run centers. In a letter sent Tuesday, the senators asked the head of the Government Accountability Office to look into the VA and states’ roles in ensuring veterans get proper care at the homes and whether the agency or states have a system to “capture real time spikes in mortality rates,” among other things. (AP) Read more here.

MAY 6 12:20 a.m. — Tyson Foods to reopen pork plant in Iowa | Tyson Foods will begin limited operation Thursday of its huge pork processing plant in Waterloo, more than two weeks after closing the facility because of a coronavirus outbreak among workers, the company announced Tuesday. Tyson said workers have been invited to tour the plant Wednesday to see enhanced safety measures and social distancing procedures that have been implemented. The plant has been closed since April 22, and the Iowa Department of Public. Get more national/world updates here.

MAY 6 12 a.m. — Texas braces for another wave of COVID-19 cases after reopening | Gov. Greg Abbott admits he’s expecting a rise in cases as Texas moves along with its reopening plans, but he’s confident Texas hospitals can handle it. “It was a rush of patients early on and then it kind of slowed down,” said Dr. Hina Pandya, with Memorial Hermann/UT Health. As the number of hospitalizations in the Houston area goes down, she’s already thinking ahead. Read more here.

MAY 6 12 a.m. — Wearable, wireless COVID-19 symptom tracker could help spot subtle signs of disease | Researchers at Northwestern University and Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in Chicago have developed a device people can wear to track the signs of COVID-19. They hope the device, which can measure and interpret coughing, respiratory activity and other symptoms 24 hours a day, could provide subtle insights into the disease. Read more here.

MAY 5 11:55 p.m. — Supreme Court to hear Obamacare birth control arguments by phone Wednesday | The Supreme Court’s third day of hearing arguments by telephone is its first chance at a high-profile case, this one involving the Affordable Care Act. The justices are hearing a dispute Wednesday about Trump administration rules that would allow more employers who cite a religious or moral objection to opt out of providing no-cost birth control to women. Read more here.

MAY 5 11:15 p.m. — VERIFY: CDC did not lower or revise the COVID-19 death count by 30,000 cases | Viral claims say that new CDC numbers lowered the initial count from 55,000-60,000 down closer to 37,000. Get the full story here: 

MAY 5 11 p.m. — Pelosi pushes ahead on massive virus bill, but GOP wary | House Democrats are seeking to drive the debate on the fifth coronavirus response bill, promising to produce a mega-package stuffed with Democratic priorities even as a chorus of GOP leaders voices hesitation about more spending. Speaker Nancy Pelosi promises that the Democratic-controlled House will deliver legislation to help state and local governments through the COVID-19 crisis, along with additional money for direct payments to individuals, unemployment insurance and a third installment of aid to small businesses. The amount of funding is to be determined.

The California Democrat is leading the way as Democrats fashion a sweeping package that is expected to be unveiled soon even as the House stays closed while the Senate is open in the pandemic. Get more national/world updates here.

MAY 5 10:20 p.m. — A teenager has designed a smart phone app to record where you’ve been during the COVID-19 pandemic. Called Asiato, for “footprint,” the app keeps track of a phone’s movements within a distance of 10 meters (33 feet) or more. The app works like a diary, but keeps track of locations. To protect privacy, the data is stored in the phone and is not automatically shared. Read more here.

MAY 5 10:07 p.m. — The Federal Trade Commission is warning people to beware of fake COVID-19 testing sites. If a site is asking you for your social security number or credit card information, that should set off some red flags.

MAY 5 9:36 p.m.  — From masks to money, Sen. Cornyn is answering COVID-19 questions: Anastasiya Bolton went one-on-one with the Senator, who’s back to work in D.C. | Senator John Cornyn shares with us whether he plans to wear a mask, what he has to say to those Americans protesting the wearing of face coverings and what to do with the CARES Act money your dead loved one may have received. Read more here.

MAY 5 9:30 p.m. — The U.S. Department of Labor awarded a $12 million Disaster Dislocated Worker Grant to the Texas Workforce Commission for unemployment help, money that could go to helping you get a new career. Read more here.

Coronavirus symptoms

The symptoms of coronavirus can be similar to the flu or a bad cold. Symptoms include a fever, cough and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control.  Some patients also have nausea, body aches, headaches and stomach issues. Losing your sense of taste and/or smell can also be an early warning sign.

Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were mild.

But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk for becoming seriously ill. However, U.S. experts are seeing a significant number of younger people being hospitalized, including some in ICU.

The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.

Human coronaviruses are usually spread through…

The air by coughing or sneezingClose personal contact, such as touching or shaking handsTouching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands.

Help stop the spread of coronavirus

Stay home when you are sick.Eat and sleep separately from your family membersUse different utensils and dishesCover your cough or sneeze with your arm, not your hand.If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.Follow social distancing

Lower your risk

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.Avoid close contact with people who are sick.Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.If you are 60 or over and have an underlying health condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes or respiratory illnesses like asthma or COPD, the World Health Organization advises you to try to avoid crowds or places where you might interact with people who are sick.

Get complete coverage of the coronavirus by texting ‘FACTS’ to 713-526-1111. 

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