Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Live: Daily Coronavirus News Updates, Dec 2: What You Need To Know Today About COVID-19 In The Seattle Area, Washington State And Around The World

On Wednesday, California health officials announced the first identified case of an omicron in the United States. A test-positive person recently returned from a trip to South Africa. According to officials, everyone with whom they contacted gave a negative result.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is developing safety measures against possible transmission of the virus, including plans to require people traveling to the United States to test negative for COVID-19 the day before landing, even if they are fully vaccinated.

Officials in Brazil are also considering new security measures as three cases of omicron have been confirmed in the country. Measures under consideration include requiring proof of vaccination and canceling carnival altogether if conditions worsen. Brazil has lost 610,000 lives to the virus, second only to the United States.

We are updating this page with the latest news on the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on Seattle, the United States and the world. Click here to see real-time updates from previous days and all other information about the coronavirus, and here to see how we track the daily spread of the virus in Washington DC.

6:57 am

Biden plans to extend travel masks until March

The Sign Warns Travelers That When Boarding Due To Covid-19 Restrictions, Travelers Will Need A Mask At The Delta Airlines Check-In Counter Last Week At Denver International Airport In Denver.  (David Zalubovsky / Associated Press)

President Joe Biden will extend the requirement for travelers to wear masks on planes, trains and buses, and at airports and transit stations until mid-March, a person familiar with the decision said Wednesday night.

The decision to renew the mandate, which expires on January 18, is part of a much broader winter COVID-19 strategy that Biden will announce on Thursday during a visit to the National Institutes of Health. The strategy will also include a new requirement for foreign travelers to be tested for COVID-19 the day before leaving for the United States, according to officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Reuters first announced the extension of the mask on Wednesday.

Biden will present his strategy as a new variant, known as the omicron, surrounds the globe. California health officials on Wednesday announced the first confirmed case of this variant in the United States in a San Francisco patient who arrived Nov.22 from South Africa.

Read the story here

—Sheryl Gay Stolberg, The New York Times

6:49 am

Germany supports restrictions on the unvaccinated as mandate looms

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday that people who have not been vaccinated will be excluded from non-essential shops, cultural and entertainment venues, and parliament will consider a common vaccination mandate as part of efforts to curb coronavirus infections, which again surpassed 70,000 new confirmed cases in 24 hour period.

Speaking after meeting with federation and state leaders, Merkel took action on fears that hospitals in Germany could find themselves overwhelmed with COVID-19 infections that are more likely to be serious in those who have not been vaccinated.

“The situation in our country is serious,” Merkel told reporters in Berlin, calling the measure “an act of national solidarity.”

Merkel herself supported the most controversial proposal for a general mandate for vaccinations. If adopted, it could come into force as early as February.

Read the story here.

– Associated Press

6:40 am

Find out the last 24 hours

Does the mask make your glasses fog up in the winter cold? These tips will help you see clearly and know what not to do (uh). As the omicron variant spreads, it is worth taking a close look at whether you are wearing a good mask and how to test its effectiveness.

“This is not the time to panic” Washington state health leaders said this after the nation’s first case of omicron was discovered in California. But it’s time to double down on the tools we have, they say. Scientists and the CDC now say every adult should get a booster shot. This rapid reversal, with the number of new cases of COVID-19 in South Africa, where the omicron was first detected, nearly doubled in one day. Here’s how to find vaccines and boosters in our state.

Washingtonians officially have a new way of proving vaccination. The state launched its digital tool, WA Verify, following a paused deployment. Here’s how it works and where to register.

The political struggle for vaccines leads us to a federal government shutdown with a key deadline tomorrow. Need to catch up? Here’s a quick overview of what’s going on with mandates and legal issues.

Donald Trump, Super Representative? The former president gave positive results a few days before he shared the debate scene with then-presidential candidate Joe Biden, his former chief of staff said. Trump then had a number of close contacts with other people, including the Gold Star families, before the public became aware of his COVID-19 case.

—Chris Higginson

Nation World News Desk
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