The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

China reports zero new local coronavirus infections; Trump signs bill to ensure paid leave, other financial benefits

A critical-care physician at the University of Washington Medical Center discussed how his hospital is getting ready for a surge of coronavirus patients. (Video: Tim Matsui/The Washington Post, Photo: EPA/The Washington Post)
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President Trump has signed into law a bill to ensure paid leave benefits to many Americans, part of a broader aid package to fight the effects of the pandemic. The legislation also promises free coronavirus testing to anyone who needs it, including the uninsured; increases health funding around the country; and supports nutrition programs such as the food stamp system.

China on Thursday said that there had been no cases of domestic coronavirus infections in the country the previous day, for the first time since the outbreak began. All 34 infections diagnosed on Wednesday were in people arriving into China from abroad, the National Health Commission said. It was a significant milestone for the country, where the virus was first reported in mid-November.

Two members of Congress, Reps. Ben McAdams (D-Utah) and Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.), said Wednesday they had tested positive for coronavirus.

Here are some significant developments:

  • Italy’s coronavirus death toll increased by 475 on Wednesday, the largest daily increase recorded in any country.
  • New York state has more confirmed cases than all but 10 countries in the world.
  • The White House coronavirus plan aims to send $2,000 to many Americans, includes $300 billion for small businesses, as markets continue to drop. The Senate on Wednesday passed a bill to ensure paid leave benefits to many Americans as coronavirus upends the labor market. It will now go to Trump for enactment.
  • The U.S. Air Force’s National Guard unit has transported 500,000 nasopharyngeal swabs for coronavirus tests from Italy to Memphis, Pentagon officials said.
  • Confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus have topped 200,000 worldwide, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University.

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