President Donald Trump warned Saturday that the country could be headed into its "toughest" weeks yet as the coronavirus death toll mounts, but at the same time he expressed growing impatience with social distancing guidelines and said he’s eager to get the country reopened and its stalled economy back on track.
"There will be a lot of death, unfortunately," Trump said in a somber start to his daily briefing on the pandemic. "There will be death."
The number of people infected in the U.S. exceeded 331,150 and the death toll climbed past 9,500, with New York state alone accounting for more than 4,150 dead. Most of the dead are in New York City, where hospitals are swamped with patients.
Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis in the U.S.:
Dr. Fauci Says It’s Likely Coronavirus Will Become ‘Seasonal’
Dr. Anthony Fauci says there a very good chance the new coronavirus “will assume a seasonal nature” because it is unlikely to be under control globally.
Fauci is director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He says the virus is unlikely to be completely eradicated from the planet this year. That means the U.S. could see the “beginning of a resurgence” during the next flu season.
Fauci says the prospect of a resurgence is the reason the U.S. is working so hard to get its preparedness “better than it was.” He says that includes working to develop a vaccine and conducting clinical trials on therapeutic interventions.
Fauci also says states that don’t have stay-at-home orders are not putting the rest of the country at risk as much as they are putting themselves at risk.
Fauci spoke on CBS’s "Face the Nation."
Louisiana Reports 68 Coronavirus-Related Deaths
Louisiana health officials reported 68 coronavirus-related deaths on Sunday, marking the state’s biggest jump in reported deaths since the outbreak began.
The Louisiana Department of Health reported the figures on its website Sunday. The number of infections reported to the state also increased by more than 500 cases from 12,496 to 13,010.
Before Sunday, the largest number of deaths reported in a single day was 60. The numbers represent when the tests were reported to the state, not necessarily when the infections or deaths occurred.
Louisiana and the New Orleans area have been an epicenter for the virus, and Gov. John Bel Edwards has repeatedly warned of looming shortages for ventilators and intensive care units.
Kentucky Churches Defy Virus Orders, Hold in-Person Services
Some Kentucky churches held Palm Sunday services in defiance of Gov. Andy Beshear’s warning against in-person worship.
Dozens of people were at Maryville Baptist Church in Louisville on Sunday, news outlets reported. A video showed a pianist playing and choir members singing during the late morning service.
Louisville’s Our Savior Lutheran Church streamed its in-person service live on YouTube. The church had required online registration beforehand and restricted seating to every other pew. The video stream did not show the audience.
Beshear warned during his daily briefing on Saturday that mass gatherings “are spreading the coronavirus.
“We care about each other in this state, and our faith guides us and gives us the wisdom to do the right thing to protect each other.”
Some states, including Florida, have made exemptions to allow religious gatherings to proceed during the coronavirus. Kentucky does not have that exemption.
Healthy Set to Leave Carnival Cruise Docked in Miami
Passengers who are fit to fly are anticipated Sunday to disembark Carnival's Coral Princess Cruise, on which at least a dozen people have tested positive for and two others have died from the novel coronavirus, NBC South Florida reports.
Officials expect the disembarkation of guests will span several days.
The ship has more than 1,000 passengers who have been isolating in their cabins, including 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on board. Princess Cruises also confirmed two guests had died.
Passengers with respiratory symptoms or who or still recovering from being ill will remain on the ship until cleared to leave by the ship's doctors.
The vessel docked in Port Miami yesterday after the U.S. Coast Guard denied the ship permission to dock in Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Americans Take Last Chance to Leave Nepal
American nationals and permanent residents have boarded a flight out of Kathmandu in what was likely their last chance to head home as Nepal prepares to extend lockdown measures to contain the spreading of the new coronavirus.
Sunday’s flight with 303 passengers on board was the second one arranged by the U.S. embassy but paid for by the passengers.
The Qatar Airways jet is scheduled to land at Washington D.C. with a fuel stop at Doha.
Nepal’s government has halted all flights and ground transportation, shutting down offices and shuttering businesses since last month to control the spread of the coronavirus.
Nepal has nine confirmed cases including one person who has recovered but no deaths so far.