President Trump said the White House would discuss a possible economic relief package with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republicans. The announcement followed a day of stunning declines in the stock market, fueled by fear about the spread of the coronavirus.

Among the options Trump mentioned in a Monday evening news conference were payroll tax cuts with “very substantial relief,” as well as ways to help hourly wage workers who cannot get paid when they stay home sick “so they don’t get penalized for something that’s not their fault.”

Italy plans to restrict movement throughout the entire country, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said Monday, effectively locking down some 60 million people in an unprecedented move to contain the coronavirus. The announcement came a day after Italy imposed similar restrictions on one-quarter of the country.

Global markets tanked on Monday, fueled by coronavirus fears and a possible oil-price war. Oil prices fell harder than they have since the 1991 Gulf War, down 25 percent. Stocks tumbled around the world as more countries implemented measures to contain the outbreak, and the United States’ tally of known infections passed 600.

Here are the latest developments:

  • More than 600 people in the United States have tested positive for the virus. Twenty-six people nationwide have died of the virus.
  • Two Republican congressmen who interacted with Trump over the past week said they are quarantining themselves after coming into contact with someone who tested positive. Trump has not been tested for the virus because he has not had “prolonged close contact" with any known patients, White House spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said, “nor does he have any symptoms."
  • Ohio announced its first cases Monday afternoon — all in the Cleveland area. Patients are now being treated in more than 30 states and the District of Columbia.
  • Boston is canceling its St. Patrick’s Day parade. More than 1 million people were expected to turn out Sunday for the 3.5-mile march. The event is in its 119th year and draws some of the largest St. Patrick’s Day crowds in the country.
  • Prison riots have broken out across Italy, in one of the first visible signs of social turmoil linked to the coronavirus outbreak.

Chinese leader Xi makes his first visit to Wuhan since coronavirus outbreak

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Chinese leader Xi Jinping arrived in Wuhan on Tuesday morning on his first visit since the coronavirus outbreak began.

He arrived by plane for a visit to inspect “epidemic prevention and control” efforts, state broadcaster CCTV reported. He was due to visit medical workers and patients, army officers and soldiers, volunteers and community residents, it reported.

Previously Xi had dispatched the premier and a vice premier to Wuhan, and analysts were waiting to see when the leader himself would visit, viewing this as a sign that China considered the epidemic was fully under control.

There were only 19 new cases of the coronavirus reported on Tuesday, 17 of them from Hubei province, of which Wuhan is the capital.

Grand Princess passenger who was worried about cancer treatment makes it off the ship

3:09 a.m.
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Kari Kolstoe, a passenger on the Grand Princess, was among those who got off Monday after an uncertain wait.

Her situation was particularly fraught because Kolstoe, 60, said she has Stage 4 neuroendocrine cancer and was originally supposed to be back in Grand Forks, N.D., in time for treatment starting early this week.

Kolstoe had said while sitting in her room that she was also worried about being there due to her “compromised” situation. The waiting was difficult, she said, with periods of boredom and frustration as well as considerable back pain caused by the cancer.

Kolstoe was taken off the ship Monday afternoon and loaded onto a bus, along with her husband Paul, both wearing masks. The news that they were among those leaving the ship Monday came suddenly, Kolstoe said, but was followed by yet another wait outside.

They sat on the bus for about three hours before it finally began driving for Travis Air Force Base on Monday evening, she said.

Kolstoe did not know whether she would get her treatment at the base but was “just glad to be off the ship,” she wrote in a text message from the bus as it rumbled away from the port and, finally, away from the ship.

Five new cases reported in Washington, D.C., area

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The D.C. region added five new cases late Monday night, bringing its total to 16.

D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser announced three new D.C. patients: a 39-year-old man who attends Christ Church Georgetown, where the rector has contracted the virus; a 77-year-old man who attended the Biogen conference in Boston that is connected to other cases across the country; and a 79-year-old man about whom no other information was released.

Christ Church said in a statement that its church organist, Tom Smith, tested positive for the virus. He and his husband are both under quarantine.

Meanwhile, Virginia authorities said the state has two new presumptive positive cases.

The first is the spouse of a Fairfax City resident who was among the state’s first confirmed cases. The couple traveled on the same Nile River cruise that has been linked to several cases of covid-19 in the United States, including three in neighboring Maryland.

The second is a Spotsylvania County resident in their 50s. State authorities did not say whether they had recently traveled overseas.

The news follows an announcement earlier Monday evening from Prince George’s County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks (D), who said a resident of the county has also tested positive for the virus.

Trump has not been tested for coronavirus, White House says

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President Trump has not been tested for covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, the White House said late Monday.

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said Trump has not had close contact with any known coronavirus patients and does not have any symptoms.

Questions about his possible exposure to the virus have abounded since the president was photographed shaking hands with Matt Schlapp, the chairman of the American Conservative Union. Schlapp had direct contact with a man at the Conservative Political Action Conference last month who was later confirmed to have the virus.

At a news conference Monday, Trump walked away from reporters who asked whether he had been tested for the virus. Vice President Pence took the question, telling the pool he did not know but promising a response.

An answer from the White House came moments later. Grisham insisted the president did not need to be tested for the virus, citing federal guidelines that say patient symptoms and exposure history should dictate whether someone is tested.

“President Trump remains in excellent health,” Grisham said, according to a pool report, “and his physician will continue to closely monitor him.”

Maryland announces sixth case, the first from Prince George’s County

2:19 a.m.
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Prince George’s County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks (D) announced on Monday that a resident has tested positive for the coronavirus.

She said a news conference would be held Tuesday morning.

Late Monday night, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said the individual contracted the virus during out-of-state travel, becoming the first person diagnosed with the virus in Maryland who was not infected overseas.

A spokesman for Hogan said the person is self-quarantined, not hospitalized.

“It’s a virus. It’s going to spread,” Senate President Bill Ferguson (D-Baltimore City) said from the dais Monday night after the governor announced the state’s sixth case. “We’re going to have more cases.”

Five out of six Republican lawmakers who came into contact with CPAC patient self-quarantine

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After Republican leaders gathered for the Conservative Political Action Conference near Washington, D.C., new reports of possible contact with a confirmed coronavirus patient there have spurred most — but not all — to self-quarantine.

While the CPAC website lists 17 members of Congress as speakers for the event, only six have reported publicly that they had contact with the attendee who later tested positive for the coronavirus in New Jersey, according to the American Conservative Union, which puts on CPAC. The latest to announce he had interacted with the infected attendee was incoming White House chief of staff Rep. Mark Meadows (N.C.), who took a preliminary test, which came back negative, according to his spokesman Ben Williamson. Still, he opted to self-quarantine.

Other Republicans who have chosen to self-quarantine — Sen. Ted Cruz (Tex.), Rep. Paul A. Gosar (Ariz.), Rep. Douglas A. Collins (Ga.) and Rep. Matt Gaetz (Fla.) — have also said they aren’t symptomatic.

Collins and Gaetz interacted with President Trump after the conference. Collins was pictured shaking hands with Trump during the president’s visit to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention headquarters in Atlanta, and Gaetz flew back from Florida to Washington on Air Force One with Trump.

Hours after his flight, Gaetz said he would close his Washington office for the remainder of his quarantine.

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham told Fox News on Monday that the administration wasn’t concerned Trump would get sick, alluding to his famed germaphobia.

“The president of the United States, as we all know, is quite a hand washer,” she said.

Cruz tweeted that he shook hands and had a brief conversation lasting less than a minute with the patient. He said he would remain home in Texas until 14 days had passed from the interaction.

The only Republican congressman who has said publicly that he had close contact with the infected attendee but won’t quarantine himself was Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert, who cited a CDC physician’s advice in a tweet on Monday.

“He said he would return if he were me and advised that my staff and I should just be careful to observe proper hygiene protocols,” he wrote. “I took the advice of the expert and returned to work. No one is panicking and we are observing the recommended precautions.”

SEC becomes first major federal employer to ask people to work from home

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The Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday asked employees at its D.C. headquarters to stay away from the office due to a potential coronavirus case, becoming the first major federal employer to turn to telework because of the spreading virus.

The email said an employee was treated for respiratory symptoms earlier Monday and was informed by a physician that the person could have the coronavirus. The worker had not been in the office since Thursday.

“To the best of our knowledge, the employee remained asymptomatic during the employee’s time in the building,” the email stated.

The agency‘s notice, which was emailed out shortly after 8 p.m., required employees working on the ninth floor of its D.C. office to stay home and encouraged all others to do the same.

“Even with increased telework, the SEC remains able and committed to fully executing its mission on behalf of investors, including monitoring market function and working closely with other regulators and market participants,” the agency said in a statement to The Post. The SEC has more than 4,000 employees across the country.

The SEC acts as one of the federal government’s primary regulators over the financial markets, which have been in upheaval as the coronavirus outbreak fanned new fears of a worldwide recession.

Read more here.

60 percent of residents at a Washington state nursing facility have tested positive

1:36 a.m.
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KIRKLAND, Wash. — Life Care Center of Kirkland, the Washington state nursing facility at the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, said almost 60 percent of its current residents have tested positive for covid-19, the disease caused by the virus.

Timothy Killian, a spokesman for facility, said Monday afternoon that the University of Washington informed the center Monday that 31 of the 53 residents have tested positive for the virus. Staff members had not yet been tested.

“These are residents inside the facility at this moment,” he said.

Killian said the university lab provided test results for 35 residents. One tested negative, and three others are inconclusive. All residents have been tested and he said they hope to receive the remaining results shortly.

The nursing home outside Seattle accounts for 19 of the region’s 20 deaths linked to the coronavirus. Killian said public health officials have not yet informed the center if they have identified the source of the virus or why it has proliferated here.

Killian said county health officials have asked Life Care to keep residents in the facility until their symptoms are acute, such as a 101-degree fever. Seven residents were showing symptoms Monday, he said, but none were serious enough to require transport to the hospital.

“Once symptoms hit a level of acute, where we feel we can no longer treat them, then we will transfer them to hospitals,” Killian said. “We don’t have an exact reason why. Our understanding, though, is that it’s about space within hospitals and other constraining factors that exist in other facilities.”

Life Care workers are moving residents who test negative for the virus to a smaller wing to separate them from those who have covid-19 in an effort to prevent them from becoming infected.

Biogen meeting linked to dozens of confirmed cases in four states

12:39 a.m.
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Dozens of coronavirus cases in several states have been linked to a company meeting of biotech giant Biogen in Boston in late February.

Most cases linked to the meeting, which was attended by about 175 people, are in Massachusetts. State health officials said Monday that 32 of the 41 infected patients in the state were either Biogen employees or close contacts of employees.

Two people in Indiana, five people in North Carolina and one person in New Jersey tested positive with coronavirus after attending the meeting.

Biogen has since informed all attendees to quarantine themselves and symptomatic employees to alert public health officials, the company said in a statement emailed to The Washington Post.

“We recognize that this is a difficult situation for our colleagues and their loved ones,” the drugmaker wrote. “We are actively working with all relevant departments of public health and hospitals to prioritize the well-being of the people who may have been exposed to COVID-19.”

The company said it asked office-based Biogen employees and contractors in Massachusetts, Research Triangle Park, N.C., and Baar, Switzerland, to work from home until further notice.

In addition to the cases associated with the meeting, one Biogen employee was tested positive after attending Cowen investment conference in Boston on March 2.

“This person will be supplying their close contacts to the public health authorities who will follow up,” the company said.

In addition, a Pennsylvania man who worked an exhibitor booth for Biogen at a conference in Florida also tested positive, Palm Beach County Mayor Dave Kerner said in a news conference on Sunday.

El Salvador embraces border measures before confirming any coronavirus cases

12:20 a.m.
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SAN SALVADOR — President Nayib Bukele of El Salvador announced over the weekend a ban on travelers from France and Germany, adding them to a list that already included China, Iran, Italy and South Korea, placing the Central American country ahead of its neighbors in the stringency of its reaction to the coronavirus epidemic.

Salvadoran nationals, including diplomats, returning from countries with travel bans will be quarantined for 30 days, the government said.

El Salvador has not confirmed any coronavirus cases. Neighboring Mexico and nearby Costa Rica have both reported cases but have not put travel bans in place.

The government took steps Sunday to sanitize El Salvador International Airport and brought in new equipment to check the temperatures of incoming passengers.

“We should implement measures to check symptoms and monitor the health of people entering El Salvador from any country that has reported cases of coronavirus,” Bukele tweeted.

Even before the president's announcement, international travelers going through customs were already receiving temperature checks and being asked to declare their travel history. On Sunday, three Salvadoran students who were studying in Wuhan, the city at the epicenter of the outbreak in China, returned to El Salvador after completing a quarantine period in Ukraine.

Nearly a third of Salvadorans live in poverty. Experts have warned that poor and marginalized populations are at heightened risk as the virus spreads.

Francisco Alabi, El Salvador’s deputy health minister, told reporters Monday that the lack of confirmed and suspected cases in the country meant there was no reason yet for Salvadorans to worry.

“People need to be calm,” he said.

The International Women’s Media Foundation provided support for this reporting as part of the Adelante Latin American Reporting Initiative.

Two more senior-living facilities near Seattle report coronavirus cases

12:09 a.m.
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SEATTLE — Two more senior-living facilities in the Seattle area have reported positive tests of covid-19, bringing the number of sites that tend to the elderly or infirm to five in the region.

In one case, the new positive test was for a staff member; in the other, both a staffer and resident had confirmed covid-19 diagnoses.

Emerald Heights in Redmond, Wash., about 15 minutes east of Seattle, disclosed Monday that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notified it Sunday that a “non-clinical staff member” tested positive for the virus. The company, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment, said on its website the employee self-reported symptoms early last week and has not returned to work.

“In consultation with the CDC and acting on their guidance, all activities have been cancelled,” the company said on its website.

The facility has closed its dining rooms and will deliver meals to residents. It is also limiting visitation to only those deemed necessary.

Aegis Living Marymoor, also in Redmond, also acknowledged Monday that a female resident tested positive for the virus. She was tested as a precautionary measure "for what was believed to be an unrelated condition,” spokeswoman Nandi Butcher said in an emailed statement. After a few days of isolation, she returned to the hospital for continued medical care late Sunday.

The company said over the weekend that a staff member was diagnosed with the novel coronavirus. That employee went home ill on Feb. 28 and has not returned to work.

The company said it has begun a “community-wide isolation,” and that all residents and staff have been “evaluated.”

The two facilities are about six miles southeast of Life Care Center in Kirkland, Wash., where at least 19 residents and visitors have died of the virus as of Monday afternoon, according to county public health officials. Two other facilities catering to seniors reported last week that some of their residents also tested positive.

Azar can’t say how many Americans have been tested

11:46 p.m.
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Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar couldn’t say how many Americans had been tested for the coronavirus, but promised that more than 4 million tests would be available by the end of the week.

In a White House news conference Monday, Azar said officials didn’t know how many tests had been administered because many people were tested at hospitals and private labs, and the technology infrastructure to report those results directly to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is not yet up and running. Azar said the CDC is “working to build IT connectivity with them.”

“Right now I could not give you a number of how many Americans have received a test,” he said.

Azar also said that private labs “are now validated and getting up and running.” He said that the involvement of private laboratories will create “a better patient and doctor and diagnostic experience” because physicians will be able to collect samples when patients are in their offices.

Azar said more than 4 million coronavirus tests will be available by the end of the week. He said there are currently 2.1 million tests available that are shipped or waiting to be shipped or ordered. There are currently more than 500 coronavirus cases in the United States, CDC Director Robert Redfield said.

Vice President Pence said, “I’ve had no recommendation that I be tested.”

The vice president told reporters that “we’ll get you a very direct answer” Monday night whether the White House physician believes the president should be tested.

Ohio announces first three cases of coronavirus

11:16 p.m.
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Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine (R) told reporters on Monday that three Ohio residents were confirmed to have the coronavirus.

“At this point, these individuals are being notified,” he said. "We would anticipate they would be notified and learn of this any moment or any minute.”

The infected, all in their 50s, are in Cuyahoga County, DeWine announced. One couple was on a cruise on the Nile. The third patient attended the AIPAC conference in Washington, D.C.

DeWine signed a state of emergency and canceled nonessential business travel for state employees.

He also said polling stations for Ohio’s March 17 primary that are located at nursing homes would be moved to avoid traffic in places where senior citizens are.

When asked about Democratic presidential rallies planned for former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in Ohio, DeWine advised people to think before attending.

“I’m the last person to in any way to advise another politician what to do,” he said, “but I would simply say that a gathering of a lot of people is probably not a great idea. They have a right to do it, it’s their First Amendment, we’re not going to block people from doing that.”

White House will discuss economic relief package with Senate GOP leaders

10:53 p.m.
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President Trump said Monday night that White House officials will meet with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Senate Republicans about a possible economic relief package.

Trump said they will be “discussing a possible payroll tax cut or relief, substantial relief, very substantial relief, that’s a big number.” The president also said the group will discuss “hourly wage workers getting help, so they are never in position to lose a paycheck. . .so they don’t get penalized for something that’s not their fault.”

The president said administration officials also will be considering creating loans for small businesses, as well as meeting with representatives of the cruise ship industry and the hotel industry.

“The main thing,” Trump said, “is we are taking care of the American public.”

Two Republican congressmen who interacted with Trump over the past week said they are quarantining themselves after coming into contact with someone who tested positive for the novel coronavirus at a conservative political conference.

Trump did not answer questions about whether he has been tested for the coronavirus. Vice President Pence said he does not know if Trump has been tested. Pence said he has not been tested for the novel coronavirus.