U.S. Midwest Surge; Remdesivir Found Ineffective: Virus Update – Bloomberg

Covid-19 is hitting the most populous states in
the U.S. Midwest, with cases surging in Illinois, Ohio and Michigan. Europe continued to report some of the highest numbers of cases since spring, prompting tougher curbs on London and a curfew in Paris.

Joe Biden faulted Donald Trump’s handling of the coronavirus in one
televised town hall while the U.S. president continued to question the effectiveness of masks in another forum.

Remdesivir has no definite effect on a hospitalized patient’s chances of survival, a clinical trial by the World Health Organization found. China’s Qingdao city, which has faced a new cluster, said it found no new infections after testing over 10 million people in four days.

Key Developments:

  • Global Tracker: Cases pass 38.8 million; deaths top 1.09 million
  • The outbreak has
    caught up with the most populous Midwest states
  • A Hong Kong-Singapore travel bubble
    will reopen financial hub links
  • One-way flights to Australia show battle to open global aviation
  • A Mexican billionaire with the virus
    says we’ll all get it eventually
  • Who’s succeeding against the coronavirus and why:

Subscribe to a daily update on the virus from Bloomberg’s Prognosis team
here. Click CVID on the terminal for global data on coronavirus cases and deaths.

relates to U.S. Midwest Surge; Remdesivir Found Ineffective: Virus Update

Japanese Official Says Case Count Is Leveling Off (10:40 a.m. HK)

Japan’s coronavirus infections are leveling off and a dramatic change in new patient numbers is not expected, domestic media reports cited Shigeru Omi, head of the government’s virus advisory panel, as saying Thursday. People’s behavior is still shifting as many want to get back to normal life, but are also increasingly aware of situations where infection risk is high, he said. The island nation has recorded less than 1,000 infections per day for over a month. Cluster infection events still pose a risk, Omi warned.

Formula One Event in Vietnam Canceled (10:32 a.m. HK)

The Formula One Vietnam Grand Prix
has been canceled this year over concerns about the coronavirus outbreak, according to a statement by Vingroup JSC, which has a multiyear deal to host the event. The cancellation was necessary in light of the continued uncertainty caused by the pandemic, the statement said. Vietnam has not reported any new community transmission cases since Sept. 2.

U.K. Looking to Try for December Rollout of Vaccine (10:20 a.m. HK)

Britain’s National Health Service is in talks with groups including the British Medical Association about mobilizing for a potential rollout of a Covid-19 vaccine by December,
Reuters reported, citing the Pulse website for health professionals.

There’s about a 50/50 chance that the vaccine can begin to be administered that month, Reuters said, citing the report from Pulse, which attributed a person familiar with the matter.

Qingdao Conducts 10.8 Million Tests (9:23 a.m. HK)

China’s eastern port city of Qingdao, which has an outbreak of 13 infections, said it has found no new cases after conducting 10.8 million tests in four days. The local government aims to test the entire population within five days.

In contrast to Europe where cases are rising again, Qingdao’s approach shows China’s faster testing ability whenever an outbreak happens. The country tested millions of people in Wuhan and Beijing earlier this year.

South Korea’s New Cases Decline (9:15 a.m. HK)

South Korea reported 47 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours, down from 99 a day earlier, according to data from the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency. The total number of confirmed cases there rose to 25,035.

Malaysia Expected to Join Covax (9:10 a.m. HK)

Malaysia is in the last stages of finalizing its participation in the Covid-19 Global Vaccine Access Plan, according to Science, Technology, and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin. The country
expects to join Covax in two weeks.

‘We’ll All Have to Get It,’ Billionaire Salinas Says (8:10 a.m. HK)

Ricardo Salinas Pliego, the head of Grupo Salinas and Latin America’s seventh-richest man, took to Twitter on Wednesday to confirm his Covid-19 diagnosis and say that everyone will
get the infection eventually. The billionaire — who had previously called Mexico’s measures to contain the virus “authoritarian” and said they would wreck the economy — accompanied the post with a picture of his treatment plan.

“Take care of yourselves and do not be afraid,” Salinas, who turns 65 next week, said in his tweet. “We’ll all have to get it, and we will be fine.”

WHO Trial Shows No Definite Survival Effect From Remdesivir (8 a.m. HK)

Remdesivir has no definite effect on a hospitalized patient’s chances of survival, a clinical trial by the World Health Organization found. Results from the Solidarity trial, which studied antiviral treatments — including remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir and interferon — found they had “appeared to have little or no effect” on mortality, the need to ventilate patients, or how long patients stayed in the hospital. The study has not yet been peer-reviewed.

Gilead, which makes remdesivir,
said in a statement it’s unclear if any conclusive findings can be drawn from the study results.

Chris Christie Says He Was Wrong Not to Wear Mask (6:36 a.m. HK)

The former New Jersey governor said he was wrong not to wear a mask when he visited the White House and urged people to take steps to prevent infection.

President Trump Holds A News Conference In White House Briefing Room

Chris Christie, left, at the White House on Sept. 27.

Photographer: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

Christie, who attended the Amy Coney Barrett announcement and helped President Donald Trump prepare for his debate, said he learned from his experience with the virus that “you should follow CDC guidelines in public no matter where you are.”

Sinopharm Says Covid Shot Safe, Immunogenic in Early Trials (6:30 p.m. HK)

The shot under development by China National Biotec Group Co., a subsidiary of state-owned Sinopharm Group Co., was tested in more than 600 volunteers, according to results published Thursday in The Lancet medical journal.

Argentina Now Among Top Five Most-Infected Countries (6:14 a.m. HK)

Argentina reported a daily record of 17,096 as it passed Colombia as the second most-infected country in Latin America after Brazil. Argentina, currently No. 5 globally in overall cases, has 949,063 positive cases and 25,342 fatalities.


A thermal camera checks the temperature of the people entering a shopping mall in Buenos Aires on Oct. 14.

Photographer: Juan Mabromata/AFP via Getty Images

Brazil reported 28,523 cases, a slight increase from the day before amid a continuing general decline in the nation with the third-highest number of infections. It has a total of 5,169,386 cases and 152,460 deaths, 713 reported in the last 24 hours.

Passenger on Biden’s Plane Tests Positive for Coronavirus (4:50 p.m. NY)

A passenger on Biden’s campaign plane
tested positive for Covid-19, the Biden campaign announced Thursday.

An administrator for the aviation charter company the campaign uses was on the plane this week for trips to Ohio and Florida but sat more than 50 feet from the Democratic nominee, used a different entrance and exit and both Biden and the person were wearing masks at all times, campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said.

Health advisers said there was no need to quarantine Biden, she said.

Wisconsin Governor Expresses Frustration as Cases Rise to Record (4:26 p.m. NY)

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers said Thursday he’ll challenge a Wednesday judicial decision that temporarily blocked an order limiting capacity in bars, restaurants and other public places.

Wisconsin's Capital City As Battleground States Shaped By Virus-Fueled Downturn

Customers sit in the outdoor dining area of a restaurant in downtown Madison, Wisconsin, U.S., on Sept. 23.

Photographer: Lauren Justice/Bloomberg

He spoke as the state again hit a record number of daily cases, 3,747. He has imposed a mask mandate and other public health measures that have been challenged in court.

“I don’t know how anyone in the state of Wisconsin can feel comfortable about saying, ‘What the hell, I don’t care about preventing deaths.’ That is unimaginable to me,” Evers said in a conference call Thursday.

Covid’s Midwest Surge Hits Populous Illinois, Ohio and Michigan (2:06 p.m. NY)

Midwest states have seen a rise in cases. In Illinois, cases surged to a record 4,015 on Thursday, extending one of the nation’s most concerning weekly trends. Daily Covid-19 deaths in the state rose to 53, the highest since June 24.

Movie Theaters And Concert Venues Reopen As Coronavirus Cases Rise

Social distancing signs are displayed at a theater in Michigan, U.S., on Oct. 9.

Photographer: Emily Elconin/Bloomberg

In Michigan and Ohio, current coronavirus hospitalizations are up 31% and 28% in the past week, the nation’s fifth- and seventh-biggest spikes respectively, according to the Covid Tracking Project.

On the basis of per-capita cases, none of those states comes close to the viral prevalence in the Dakotas or Wisconsin. Still, a trend is emerging.

In North Dakota, which ranks highest in the nation for cases per capita, a record 705 new cases were reported. The state has been running short of hospital beds, and Governor Doug Burgum is under increasing pressure from mayors and others to issue mask mandates.

France Leads Europe’s Spike With Record Number of Cases (1:40 p.m. NY)

reported a record 30,621 new infections on Thursday after the previous high last Saturday with 26,896 cases. Deaths increased by 88 to 33,125, according to the health agency.

City Commuters as France Mulls New Virus Curbs

Morning rush hour commuters wear protective face masks on busy metro train in Paris on Oct. 14.

Photographer: Nathan Laine/Bloomberg

In Spain, 6,603 new cases were detected, the biggest daily increase since April. The region reporting the highest number of cases is Madrid, which reported 2,292 new infections, after the national government declared the state of emergency. Catalonia, the country’s second most-populous region, is also set to implement a shutdown of bars and restaurants.

Ireland reported a record 1,205 new cases. The number of hospitalizations is increasing faster than its modeling predicted, health authorities said, a sign of “a rapidly deteriorating disease trajectory nationally.”

Cyprus reported 93 cases, a record high since the beginning of the pandemic. Meanwhile, Ukraine imposed a lockdown for nine cities, 21 towns and 37 districts where schools and restaurants will be shut.

U.K. Adds More Cases to Contain Hot Spots (12:15 p.m. NY)

The U.K. reported a further 18,980 new cases and 138 new deaths on Thursday, as it wrestled with how to control the virus in its hot spots.

London on Course for Clampdown as U.K. Virus Response Fragments

People sit around an advertisement displaying that the current Local Covid Alert Level is Medium at a bus stop in London, U.K., on Oct. 15.

Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Talks over whether Manchester will go into the highest level of restrictions ended without a conclusion on Thursday, as local leaders resisted tougher measures. Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham asked for more government support for businesses if they are forced to close.

Londoners will be
banned from mixing with other households indoors from this weekend as tighter coronavirus restrictions are imposed in an attempt to curb a rise in cases in the capital. The move was welcomed by Mayor Sadiq Khan, who asked for more financial support and repeated calls for a “circuit breaker” or lockdown.

The U.K. also imposed quarantines on those arriving from Italy.

Italy Hits Record (11:16 a.m. NY)

Italy’s cases reached a daily record on Thursday, rising to 8,804, compared with 7,332 the previous day. About 163,000 tests were carried out, and 83 deaths related to Covid-19 were reported, bringing the total to 36,372. Patients in intensive care units rose by 47 to 586.

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte imposed a series of new curbs on nightlife, social events and amateur sports as the pandemic intensifies throughout the country, though at a slower pace than in other major European nations

NYC Sees Plateau of Infections in Virus Hot Spots, Mayor Says (10:59 a.m. NY)

Mayor Bill de Blasio said a massive testing effort inside areas of increasing Covid-19 had shown a leveling off of new infections, but more must be done to stave off a second wave of the pandemic in the most populous US city.

New York has conducted 17,000 tests in three clusters of the city, offering self-testing with 13 mobile testing units in the the areas where the virus is spreading at a faster rate, the mayor said. “I am deeply concerned about the threat of a second wave,” he said.

Harris Cancels Travel After Two on Her Plane Get Covid-19 (10:43 a.m. NY)

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris has
canceled her travel until Monday after her communications director and a member of her flight crew tested positive for Covid-19, the Biden campaign said Thursday.

The campaign said the California senator was not in “close contact” with communications director Liz Allen or the crew member in the days before they tested positive, but her travel would be paused “out of an abundance of caution.” Neither infected person was in contact with presidential nominee Joe Biden, whose travel schedule won’t be interrupted.

Houston ICUs See Surge in Patients (10:40 a.m. NY)

The Houston metro area’s tally of the sickest virus patients jumped by 18% in 24 hours to the highest in a month, according to the SouthEast Texas Regional Advisory Council. There were 214 Covid-19 patients in intensive-care units in the nine-county region that includes the fourth-largest U.S. city.

The spike comes amid resurgent outbreaks in El Paso, Lubbock and Amarillo that are straining ICU capacity. It wasn’t clear how many of the Houston patients were transported from other parts of the state.

Germany Warns Tracing Capacity Near Limits (8:51 a.m. NY)

Germany’s top health official
warned that the recent surge in infections is threatening its ability to track cases and check the spread of the disease.

“The problem is that day by day with increasing numbers our local authorities are not able any more to trace,” Health Minister Jens Spahn said. “And then you lose track” and the numbers are increasing exponentially, he added.

Trump’s Antibody Cocktail Won’t Be Widely Available (7:16 a.m. NY)

The antibody
cocktail U.S. President Donald Trump credited for his swift coronavirus recovery won’t become widely available because it’s impossible to make enough for everyone who might need it, according to the Swiss pharmaceutical giant working on scaling up production.

“We’ll never be able to produce enough,” said Bill Anderson, drugs chief at Roche Holding AG, which is working together with U.S. biotech Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. on the project. “This is clearly part of the answer for the world, not the answer. Hopefully we’ll have vaccines and other therapeutics.”

France Sets Paris Curfew as Europe Sees Record Cases (2 p.m. HK)

France imposed a
curfew in Paris while Germany and Italy posted record increases in new infections, as Europe’s leaders intensified efforts to stem an unrelenting surge in coronavirus cases.

President Emmanuel Macron will confine residents of nine of the country’s biggest cities to their homes between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. for four weeks starting on Saturday.

Germany’s new coronavirus cases increased at the fastest pace since the pandemic started, the latest sign that Europe is failing to control the outbreak. The country registered 7,173 new infections in the 24 hours through Thursday morning, taking the total to 344,487, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Matt Miller reports on “Bloomberg

Daybreak: Europe.” (Source: Bloomberg)

— With assistance by Joanna Ossinger, Claire Che, and Lisa Du

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U.S. Midwest Surge; Remdesivir Found Ineffective: Virus Update – Bloomberg

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