AP PA & AP News Roundup: New Jersey family loses four

Photo provided by Gov. Wolf

AP PA Headlines 3/20/20

FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) — A fourth member of a New Jersey family has died from COVID-19. NJ.com reports Vincent Fusco died Thursday morning at a hospital in Freehold. Fusco’s mother, Grace Fusco, died Wednesday night, hours after another son, Carmine Fusco, died in Pennsylvania. A sister, Rita Fusco-Jackson, died last Friday. Multiple reports say several members of the family have been hospitalized with the coronavirus.

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf has issued a sweeping shutdown order to tens of thousands of “non-life-sustaining” businesses Thursday. The governor decreed they must close their physical locations by 8 p.m. Thursday to slow the spread of the coronavirus or face enforcement by state police and other government agencies.

Wolf cited his authority under the state’s disaster declaration law in ordering more than 150 types of businesses to close their physical locations. It was among the harshest measures yet taken by a U.S. governor in response to the virus pandemic. Republicans warned of economic devastation and accused Wolf of setting off panic.

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania’s prisons are working to set up video conferences between inmates and family members now that visits have been suspended in an effort to keep the coronavirus out of the institutions. Corrections Secretary John Wetzel said the service should be available soon to family members in their homes. It had been available previously between prisons, if, say, a family member went to a prison to connect with a relative incarcerated somewhere farther away in a Pennsylvania state prison. But now, families will be able to sign up for 45-minute time slots and use devices in their homes to video chat.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has unveiled a sweeping economic rescue plan to pump $1,200 checks directly to taxpayers, $300 billion for small businesses to keep idled workers on payroll and $208 billion in loans to airlines and other industries. It’s the initial Republican offer on the biggest package yet to respond to the coronavirus outbreak. Negotiations with Democrats begin Friday. The GOP leader’s effort builds on President Donald Trump’s request for Congress to “go big” as lawmakers race to craft a $1 trillion economic aid and stimulus package amid the pandemic crisis and nationwide shutdown that’s hurtling the country toward a likely recession.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — First lady Melania Trump and top infectious disease specialist Anthony Fauci (FOW’-chee) will take part in public service messages aimed at informing Americans about the coronavirus. The White House says it’s joining with major media companies, digital platforms and the Ad Council to share “accurate and timely information directly to the American people.” The public service campaign will direct people to coronavirus.gov, which includes centralized, updated information on the crisis.  NBCUniversal, ViacomCBS and Walt Disney Television are among the companies that are taking part in the effort to inform Americans about how to protect themselves and others from the coronavirus.

NEW YORK (AP) — News organizations large and small are dropping paywalls so readers in their communities can find out about the coronavirus story. It’s a public service, but one they hope pays dividends by convincing people to subscribe. Editors are finding a hunger for their work. The downside is that the nationwide shutdown resulting in event cancellations and restaurant closings is hurting their advertisers, risking that any subscriber gains could be offset. Already, coronavirus layoffs and furloughs have hit the news biz, with the Military Times and the weekly weekly Sacramento News & Review in California letting staffers go in what they say they hope is a temporary move.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — They may only play doctors on TV, but they’re giving real-life help to hospitals that have taken a hit from the coronavirus outbreak. The Fox medical series “The Resident” has donated some of its on-set masks and gowns to a hospital in Atlanta, where it shoots, and the ABC show “The Good Doctor” is moving to do the same in its home base of Vancouver, Canada.

Dr. Karen Law of Grady Memorial Hospital says on Instagram that the gear was a godsend for overburdened medical workers. Also Thursday, organizers of the Cannes Film Festival postponed the annual cinematic extravaganza, and the next “Minions” movie was bumped from the summer schedule.

PARIS (AP) — At a time of isolation, people in many European cities hit hard by the new coronavirus are taking at least a minute each night to come together in gratitude. They stand at open windows or on balconies in Rome, Madrid, Paris, Athens and Amsterdam, singing, cheering and applauding, even though they know their intended audience is too busy to listen. The adulation is for the doctors, nurses and other health care workers on the front lines of the pandemic that is forcing most residents to stay at home. Workers at one hospital responded with a video in which they all wore masks and held up signs with messages that included, “We are all in this together.”

WASHINGTON (AP) — Surgeon General Jerome Adams is urging healthy Americans, especially younger ones, to donate blood. Around the country, blood centers are seeing supplies dwindle as blood drives are canceled during the coronavirus outbreak. Some of the most reliable donors — older people — are staying home. Blood has a short shelf life and regular donations are needed to replenish it. Even with elective surgeries canceled, hospitals will need blood on hand for trauma or other emergencies. Blood centers always check would-be donors for fever or other signs of illness but they’re taking extra precautions so people can safely donate.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

 

 

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