BREAKING NEWS: Donald Trump declares a national emergency on coronavirus with drive-thru testing centers in Walmart, Target and CVS parking lots – but says there will NOT be tests for everyone and CANNOT say when they will arrive

  • President holds White House Rose Garden press conference and declares state of emergency which cracks open $50 billion emergency funds
  • Walks out with CEOs of retailers including Walmart, Target and CVS who will set-up drive-thru testing centers in their parking lots
  • But he said not everybody who wants a test should get one – instead people will go to a Google-run website to find out if they need tested
  • Waived federal student loan interest and issued guidelines banning visitors from nursing homes 
  • Press conference came as Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive Friday for coronavirus, according to local reports, but then his son said a second test was negative 
  • Trump shook hands with Bolsonaro last week at an event at Mar-a-Lago which has sparked fears of his exposure to the virus  
  • Trump has not addressed if he has been tested but the White House earlier said he had not 
  • The White House also said the first family will not go into quarantine despite their closeness to several confirmed cases of the virus in the past week 
  • Ivanka Trump stayed home from White House on Friday after meeting on March 5 with an Australian official who later tested positive for coronavirus 
  • States of emergency have been declared in New York City and in various other cities around the country
  • There is continued criticism of how slow the government has been to respond to the virus with testing 
  • As of Friday afternoon, 1,800 people in the US had tested positive for coronavirus and 42 had died 
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

Donald Trump declared a national emergency on coronavirus at a hastily-organized press conference in the White House Rose Garden – allowing him to access $50 billion in emergency funds and unveiling drive-thru testing in Walmart, Target and CVS parking lots. 

But he said testing should not be available to everyone, directing people instead to a Google-run website to tell people what to do. When it will launch will be announced Sunday.

He also failed to address when adequate numbers of tests will finally arrive – and one of his advisers said the president only ‘realized’ there was a problem on Tuesday.

‘The action I am taking will open up access to up to $50 billion of very important and a large amount of money for states and territories, localities in our shared fight against this disease. In furtherance of the order, I’m asking every state to set up emergency operations centers immediately,’ he said. 

He opened the press conference by repeating claims which have repeatedly come under fire that the federal response has been a success. 

He spoke on a day when questions mounted about whether he has been infected with the virus himself, with his daughter Ivanka self-isolation – and as markets suffered yet another wild ride. His dinner guest in Mar-a-Lago, Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro was at the center of confusion as his son said he tested positive for coronavirus then he right-leader claimed he had tested negative.

‘I’d like to provide an update to the American people on several decisive new actions we’re taking that are very vigilant effort to combat and ultimately defeat the corona virus, we’ve been working very hard on this. We’ve made tremendous progress,’ he said.

‘Europe was just designated as the hotspot right now. We closed that border awhile ago. That was lucky, through talent or luck, whatever you want. But through a very collective action and shared sacrifice, national determination, we will overcome the threat of the virus.’

‘Like our earlier, very aggressive actions with China this measure will save countless lives.’

‘To unleash the full power of the federal government did the separate today I am officially declaring a national emergency – two very big words.’

‘The action I am taking will open up access to up to $50 billion of very important and a large amount of money for states and territories, localities in our shared fight against this disease. Furtherance of the order, I’m asking every state to set up emergency operations centers immediately.’ 

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State of emergency: Donald Trump announced a state of national emergency in the Rose Garden at a hastily organized press conference 

New testing: Google is producing a website for the virus to tell people whether they should be tested. That is a complete abandonment of Trump’s promise last Friday that everybody who wants a test will get a test

Scene in the Rose Garden: Reporters wore masks for the press briefing – and were not placed apart despite CDC guidance that distancing limits risk

Trump also urged those who don’t need to testing to not take a test for the disease.

‘We don’t want everybody taking this test. It’s totally unnecessary. This will pass. This will pass through.’

Even as he recommended not to get tested, he announced more testing options would be forthcoming.

‘We’re announcing a new partnership with the private sector to vastly increase and accelerate our capacity to test for the coronavirus. We want to make sure that those who need a test can get a test very safely, quickly and conveniently. But we don’t want people to take a test if we feel that they shouldn’t be doing it. We don’t want every one running out and taking it. Only if you have certainly symptoms,’ Trump said, as he stood in the Rose Garden surrounded by members of the coronavirus task force.

‘We expect up to a half a million additional tests will be available early next week,’ he added.

And he said drive-up testing will be available soon.

‘We’ve been in discussions with pharmacies and retailers to make drive-thru tests available in the critical locations identify by public health professionals. The goal is for individuals to be able to drive up and be swabbed without having to leave your car,’ he said.

And he announced Google is helping the administration build a website to help people determine if they should be tested.

‘I want to thank Google. Google is helping to develop a website that will be very quickly done – unlike websites of the past – to determine whether a test is warranted and facilitate testing at a nearby convenient location,’ Trump said.

President Trump has not been tested – despite being exposed to people who have been in contact with those who tested positive for the disease. And Democrats have heavily criticized the administration for the lack of available testing.

The president also asked all hospitals to ‘activate its emergency preparedness plan so they can meet the needs of Americans everywhere.’

He outlined three other actions his administration is taking as the U.S. death count hit 41 and nearly 2,000 people have been infected.

The president said ‘telehealth’ will be implemented.

‘The ability to waive laws to enable telehealth, a fairly new and incredible thing that has happened in the not so distance past. I tell you what they’ve done with telehealth is incredible,’ he said. ‘Number 2, the ability to waive requirements that critical access hospitals limit beds to 25 and the length of stay to 96 hours.’

He also said nursing homes and hospitals would be able to waive the three-day stay requirement prior to admission.

‘No resource will be spared, nothing whatsoever,’ Trump vowed.  

Dr. Deborah Birx defended the administration’s work on a test to detect the coronavirus.

‘Last Tuesday, seeing the spread of the virus around the globe, the president realized our current approach to testing was adequate to meet the needs of the public,’ she said.

‘He asked for an entire overhaul of the testing approach. He immediately called the private sector laboratories to the White House as noted and charged them with developing a high quality platform that can meet the needs of the American public,’ she added.

Birx argued most of the work the administration has done has been behind the scenes.

‘I understand that a lot of this behind the scenes action over the last couple weeks was invisible to the press and the American people.

‘But this intense effort has not only resulted in innovative solutions but an automated high input system bringing the availability of these quality coronavirus testing to the American people at unprecedented speed,’ she said.

CEO line-up: Trump brought a string of CEOs 

She also gave a demo of the website Google is building, saying people would be able to fill out a screening questionnaire, move down for symptoms or risk factors and then be told where the drive-thru options would be for them to receive testing. 

 Trump also said he’s waived interest rates on all student loans until further notice and said he ordered the energy secretary to stock up strategic oil reserves given the low prices.

‘We’re going to fill it up to the top,’ he said. ‘We’re buying it at the right price. That’s something that would have not even been possible a week ago. The price of I’ll went down quite a bit. So we’re going to fill it up.’  

Seema Verma, who is in charge of Medicare and Medicaid announced her agency was imposing tough new regulations on nursing homes that would restrict visitors to end-of-life situtations only.

‘CMS is going to be issuing guidance directing nursing homes to temporarily restrict all visitors and nonessential personnel with the few exceptions such as end of life situations. We fully appreciate that this measure represents a severe trial for residents of nursing homes and those who love them. But we are doing what we must to protect our vulnerable elderly,’ she said.

Coronavirus has been hitting the elderly particularly hard.

President Trump praised the sporting associations that have closed down games. The NCAA has canceled its tournament, basketball games have shut down, and the Masters has been postponed.

‘We want to prevent the spread and transmission of the disease. It’s incredible what sports, what’s happening with the sporting world where so many of the great sports that we have gotten to used to at this time of the year they are not going to be meeting and they have done a great service, actually, by that,’ he said. 

President Trump also tried to rally American spirits – something even his inner circle acknowledge he has repeatedly failed to do.

‘We are learning a lot for the future and future problems like this or worse, or worse. It could get worse. The next 8 weeks are critical. We can learn and we will turn a corner on this virus. Some of the doctors say it will wash through. It will flow through. Interesting terms. And very accurate. I think you are going to find in a number of weeks it’s going to be a very accurate term. In times of hardship, the true character of America always shines through,’ he said.

‘The spirit and will of our nation is unbreakable. We will defeat this threat when America is tested, America rises to the occasion. And to those families and citizens who are worried and concerned for themselves and their loved ones, I want you to know that your federal government will unleash every authority, resource and tool at its disposal to safeguard the lives and health of our people. So we are with you every step of the way,’ he added.

‘No nation is more prepared or more equipped to face down this crisis. As you know, we are rated number one in the world,’ he pointed out. 

Additionally, Trump and his fellow G7 leaders spoke, according to French President Emmanuel Macron, and will hold a videoconference on Monday about combatting the disease.

‘Following my call with @realDonaldTrump and all G7 leaders, we agreed to organize an extraordinary Leaders Summit by videoconference on Monday on Covid-19. We will coordinate research efforts on a vaccine and treatments, and work on an economic and financial response,’ Macron wrote on Twitter. 

The president announced the press conference after reports out of Brazil said the Bolsonaro tested positive for coronavirus. One of the major newspapers in Rio de Janeiro, Journal O Dia, noted The Guardian’s Tom Phillips, reported the news of Bolsonaro’s positive test. 

Bolsonaro, 64, was checked for the disease after his aide Fabio Wajngarten tested positive for it. 

But a second test that came back on Friday showed the president tested negative, according to a statement on Bolsonaro’s official Facebook page, which is adding to the questions and confusion.  

President Donald Trump shaking hands with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro during a dinner at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday night; Bolsonaro’s condition remains unknown – there are reports that he has tested positive and negative for coronavirus

Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro, wearing a protective mask, is seen at the Alvorada Palace, on Friday

‘The Armed Forces Hospital and (diagnostic laboratory) Sabin have returned a negative test result for COVID-19 for the President of the Republic Jair Bolsonaro,’ the posting said. It was accompanied by a photo of Bolsonaro flashing an obscene arm gesture at the press.

On Thursday, Trump brushed aside concerns about his encounter with the Brazilians – the latest in a series of brushes the president has had with the highly-contagious disease. 

Both Bolsonaro and Wajngarten, his press secretary, were at the Winter White House Saturday night. Wajngarten had his photo take with President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. 

There are now more than 1,800 cases of coronavirus across the US and 42 people have died 

Trump and the first family have resisted going into self-quarantine despite other lawmakers who came into contact with those testing positive for the disease going into voluntary isolation.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends testing if you ‘have been in close contact with a person known to have’ the virus. The agency defines close contact as ‘being within approximately 6 feet (2 meters) of a COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time.’ Also, according to CDC guidelines, the president would be considered ‘medium’ risk for exposure. 

From left: Vice President Mike Pence, President Donald Trump, and Fabio Wajngarten, the communications secretary for Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. The three men posed for a photo on Saturday at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida

Other world leaders are self-quarantining. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in a voluntary 14-day quarantine after his wife, Sophie, tested positive for the disease.  

Several members of the first family were at the Winter White House Saturday night where there was a birthday party for Kimberly Guilfoyle, the girlfriend of Donald Trump Jr., in addition to the working dinner for the Brazilian delegation. 

One of those was Ivanka Trump, who, it was revealed late Thursday, had another brush with the disease. 

She and Attorney General Bill Barr posed for a photograph with Australian Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton on March 5 – days before he tested positive for coronavirus. 

They were meeting as part of a meeting between officials from the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the U.S. The next day, Ivanka Trump attended the dinner at Mar-a-Lago with her father and Bolsonaro.

Ivanka Trump stayed home on Friday but is showing no symptoms, does not need to self-quarantine and stayed home out of an abundance of caution, the White House said. 

‘The White House is aware that Mr. Dutton tested positive for COVID-19. He was asymptomatic during the interaction. Exposures from the case were assessed and the White House Medical Unit confirmed, in accordance with CDC guidance, that Ivanka is exhibiting no symptoms and does not need to self-quarantine. She worked from home today out of an abundance of caution until guidance was given,’ White House Deputy press secretary Judd Deere said in a statement. 

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert at the National Institutes of Health, said he would ‘likely’ have been tested after coming if he had come into contact with Bolsonaro’s aide who tested positive for the coronavirus. 

When asked hypothetically if he would get a test, he told ABC’s ‘Good Morning America’: ‘Likely I would, but I’m not sure.’

‘It depends on the circumstances,’ he added. 


Anthony Fauci on Friday

Dr. Anthony Fauci refused to urge the president to get tested for COVID-19 after coming into contact with the Brazilian president and one of his aides who has the virus, but said if it were him, he likely would. 

Trump and President Jair Bolsonaro had dinner at Mar-a-Lago on March 7, a day after one of his key aides tested positive for the virus. 

Bolsonaro is now awaiting the results of his own test, but the White House says Trump has not had one. 

The Mirror claimed on Friday that he had tested positive for the virus. That is yet to be confirmed by Brazilian officials. 

Ivanka Trump with Australian government minister Peter Dutton (right) on March 5. Dutton has tested positive for the virus 

Fauci said on Friday morning that he did not want to comment too strongly on the decision and that Trump and his doctors would know the best course of action. 

But when pushed, Fauci admitted that he would likely have a test if it were him who had come into contact with the infected aide. 

‘I leave that to the president’s white house physician who is an extremely competent individual who I know well, and the decisions there were between what would be a potential patient and the physician,’ he said. 

When asked if he would get a test, he said: ‘Likely I would, but I’m not sure. 

‘It depends on the circumstances.

‘We should follow the guidelines of the CDC about when you are at a risk what you should do.’ 

Ivanka Trump was also at the dinner on March 7 and she has another connection to the virus – two days earlier, on March 5, she stood shoulder-to-shoulder with an Australian government minister who has now tested positive for the virus. 

It is unclear whether or not she has been tested.  

Wajngarten, the Bolsonaro aide who was at Mar-a-Lago for Saturday’s dinner and the birthday party, tested positive for the virus, setting off a chain of events on Thursday, including a test for his boss. Brazil has at least 73 confirmed cases of coronavirus and zero deaths thus far.

The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald reported on Thursday that Bolsonaro took two tests: ‘The result should be ready. But the presidential palace is now saying the result will only be released Friday, which likely means he had a second test, and that one takes longer,’ he wrote on Twitter. 

Bolsonaro’s son Eduardo, who was also at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday night, tweeted on Friday that there was ‘too much lies’ in the media and claimed the testing wasn’t complete.

‘Too much lies and little information. Coronavirus exam done with the team that were with JB in USA have not yet been completed There are always those people who tell lies in the media and if the story is confirmed they say ‘I told you!’, if not will be just 1 more fake news,’ he wrote. 

Fox News’ John Roberts reported Eduardo Bolsonaro originally told the network that his father tested positive.

‘After telling @FoxNews that his father had a preliminary POSITIVE test for coronavirus, Eduardo Bolsonaro now tells @FoxNews the test was NEGATIVE. Bolsonaro says has been in touch with the White House,’ Roberts wrote on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, a Republican, announced he tested positive for coronavirus after attending an event with Bolsonaro and Wajngarten in Miami on Monday.

At the event, he hugged Bolsonaro after presenting the Brazilian president with keys to the city. 

‘It is confirmed that I have the coronavirus,’ Suarez told the Miami Herald. ‘I did test positive for it.’ 

‘I’m concerned for people who have had some measure of contact with me,’ he added.  

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said Thursday he would self-quarantine and be tested for the virus. The South Carolina senator was at Mar-a-Lago this weekend. He also met with Australian official in his Washington D.C. office on March 5. 

‘Senator Graham was at Mar-a-Lago last weekend. He has no recollection of direct contact with the President of Brazil, who is awaiting results of a coronavirus test, or his spokesman who tested positive,’ Graham’s office said in a statement.

‘However, in an abundance of caution and upon the advice of his doctor, Senator Graham has decided to self-quarantine awaiting the results of a coronavirus test. This is a precautionary measure. He will continue to work from home,’ his office noted. 

Republican Senator Rick Scott of Florida also said that he will self-quarantine after he met with the Brazil delegation, which included Wajngarten.

‘While I do not believe I interacted with the infected person, that individual was in the same room as me,’ Scott said. He said he was self-quarantining out of ‘an abundance of caution’ and would work from home. 

President Trump, who was photographed standing next to Wajngartenn and Vice President Mike Pence at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday night, said Thursday he was ‘not concerned’ about possibly contracting the virus.

‘Let’s put it this way: I’m not concerned,’ Trump told reporters Thursday while meeting with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar in the Oval Office. 

‘We did nothing very unusual. We sat next to each other for a period of time,’ the president noted. 

MARCH 7: Trump, Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro with President Trump, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, and Ivanka Trump at a working dinner at Mar-a-Lago

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez embraces Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro at an event in Miami on Monday. Mayor Suarez has the virus 

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham addressed the situation before reports of Bolsonaro’s test. 

‘The White House is aware of public reports that a member of the Brazilian delegation’s visit to Mar-a-Lago last weekend tested positive for COVID-19; confirmatory testing is pending. Exposures from the case are being assessed, which will dictate next steps. Both the President and Vice President had almost no interactions with the individual who tested positive and do not require being tested at this time,’ she said, referring to Wajngarten.

‘As stated before, the White House Medical Unit and the United States Secret Service has been working closely with various agencies to ensure every precaution is taken to keep the First & Second Families, and all White House staff healthy,’ she noted. 

Justin Trudeau, 48, is ‘in good health’ has no symptoms but will be in isolation for 14 days, and will continue to work and conduct his duties remotely, according to the statement. The couple pictured above in December 2019

‘To reiterate CDC guidelines, there is currently no indication to test patients without symptoms, and only people with prolonged close exposure to confirmed positive cases should self-quarantine,’ Grisham said. ‘We are monitoring the situation closely and will update everyone as we get more information.’

Wajngarten accompanied his boss on the Florida visit, which included meetings with officials and the dinner at Mar-a-Lago.

The encounter was the latest brush Trump has had with the coronavirus. An attendee at CPAC, the annual conservative conference that the president addressed at the end of February, tested positive for the virus.

The American Conservative Union, which sponsors the conference, was quick to say the person had no direct contact with Trump or Pence, who also spoke. 

But three lawmakers went into self-quarantine because they did and all had contact with the president: new White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, Rep. Doug Collins and Rep. Matt Gaetz.

Gaetz was also at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday night for the dinner and birthday party. Additionally, the Florida Republican flew back to Washington D.C. with the president on Air Force One on Monday. 

The president has not been tested for the coronavirus, according to the White House. 

A columnist for the newspaper, Monica Bergamo, said Wajngarten was tested for coronavirus at the Albert Einstein Hospital in São Paulo on Wednesday. 

His test result was positive, multiple news outlets reported. 

In the photo he posted on Instagram from the Saturday night events at Mar-a-Lago, Wajngarten is standing next to Trump wearing a ‘Make Brazil great again’ cap.

Vice President Mike Pence was next to Trump.

In addition to the working dinner at Mar-a-Lago, there was a birthday party for Guilfoyle, attended by several members of the first family and many Trump allies.  

Spotted at the lavish bash: Donald Trump Jr., her boyfriend of almost two years; Eric Trump and his wife Lara Trump;  Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner; Tiffany Trump;  Rudy Giuliani, the president’s personal attorney; Republican Senator Lindsey Graham; and Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz of Florida.

Fox News host Tucker Carlson was also there as was National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien; Senator Rand Paul’s Deputy Chief of Staff Sergio Gor, Fox News’ Jesse Watters and his wife Emma Watters; and new acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell.   

As of Thursday afternoon, there have been more than 1,360 reported cases of coronavirus in the United States. At least 39 people have died. 

An attendee at the 2020 Conservative Political Action Conference on February 29 (Trump pictured at the event, above) has tested positive for the coroanavirus

Congressman Matt Gaetz, who announced he was exposed to Coronavirus, departing off Air Force One on Monday (left). He was at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday (right)

Self-isolating: NYU Langone hospital says Dr. Alan Berger, an obstetrician/gynecologist who also attended CPAC last month, has voluntarily self-quarantined. It did not say if he has tested positive for coronavirus. Texas senator Ted Cruz said he was staying at home after shaking hands with someone at the CPAC conservative conference

Last month, Trump said he was not concerned about contracting the virus after a man in his 50s who attended the three-day Conservative Political Action Conference that began on February 26.   

The American Conservative Union, the organization that runs CPAC, insisted the patient had no contact with either Trump or Pence at the conservative gathering in National Harbor, Maryland. 

‘A New Jersey hospital tested the person, and CDC confirmed the positive result,’ the ACU said.

‘The individual is under the care of medical professionals in the state of New Jersey, and has been quarantined.’

The attendee did not listen to any speeches in the main hall, the ACU confirmed. 

Several senior White House officials attended the event, including White House adviser and first daughter Ivanka Trump, White House senior counselor Jared Kushner, White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway and the former acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney.

Donald Trump Jr was also there as were several members of the president’s cabinet including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Health and Human Service Secretary Alex Azar, Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette, acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf, and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, who is married to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Passengers, including American citizen Dylan Clairmont (right), 20, wait to board the last direct United Airlines flight from Berlin to New York at Tegel Airport on Friday

Kennedy Airport is a ghost town on Friday after Trump instituted a ban on travel to and from Europe for 30 days

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement to reporters that precautions were being taken although she did not offer specifics.

‘The White House is aware of an individual testing positive for coronavirus after attending the CPAC conference that took place nearly two weeks ago. At this time, there is no indication that either President Trump or Vice President Pence met with or were in close proximity to the attendee. 

‘The president’s physician and United States Secret Service have been working closely with White House staff and various agencies to ensure every precaution is taken to keep the first family and the entire White House complex safe and heathy,’ she said.’

Donald Trump Jr did not come into contact with the individual at CPAC, a spokesman said.

‘It has been confirmed that Don did not come into contact with the individual that tested positive,’ said a spokesman for the president’s son told  

Earlier this week, a leading New York doctor and political ally of Senator Ted Cruz went into self-quarantine over fears he has coronavirus. 

Alan Berger, a 55-year-old gynecologist who works for NYU Langone Health, volunteered to isolate himself and is no longer seeing patients, the facility confirmed in a statement. 

Berger has hosted fundraisers for Texas Republican Cruz in his hometown of Englewood, New Jersey and is said to be friendly with President Donald Trump’s in laws, the Kushners. 

Authorities have not commented on suggestions Berger is the ‘patient zero’ who interacted with Cruz and Matt Schlapp, the chairman of the American Conservative Union, at CPAC.

The CPAC patient was described as a 55-year-old man who was recovering in New Jersey; Dr. Berger is a 55-year-old man who has self-isolated in New Jersey. 

New Jersey authorities have confirmed that a 55-year-old man from Englewood was quarantined for a presumptive positive attended CPAC. He was in stable condition and has been hospitalized since March 4, 

The Englewood man attended services at a temple in New Rochelle, New York, according to New Jersey commissioner of health Judith Persichille.

Schlapp shook hands with the president and mingled with Ivanka Trump, Lara Trump and Jared Kushner during the event in Washington, D.C,’s Maryland suburbs but says he’s ‘healthy as a horse’ and has urged attendees not to panic.

Cruz, however, announced last Sunday: ‘Last night, I was informed that 10 days ago at CPAC I briefly interacted with an individual who is currently symptomatic and has tested positive for COVID-19.

‘That interaction consisted of a brief conversation and a handshake.’ 

It was later announced that a second lawmaker, Arizona Republican Paul Gosar, and three members of his staff had also gone into quarantine following ‘contact at CPAC with a person who has since been hospitalized with the Wuhan Virus.’ 

White House coronavirus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci says complete US shutdown is ‘on the table’ and warns the crisis could last TWO MONTHS 

In a series of interviews with Good Morning America and CBS This Morning, Fauci gave his bleak assessment of what is still to come

White House coronavirus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Friday morning that the current state of crisis in the US would last for two months and that ‘it’s all on the table’ in terms of how much more severe things may become.

In a series of interviews with Good Morning America and CBS This Morning, Fauci gave his bleak assessment of what is still to come.

‘It’s certainly going to get worse before it gets better…there’s no doubt we have not peaked yet,’ he said. 

Asked directly if America was heading towards a complete shutdown like China and Italy, he would not rule it out. 

‘I’m not sure we’re going to get to that. 

‘I think that would be really rather dramatic, but I can tell you that all things are on the table. 

‘We just have to respond as things evolve over the days and the weeks,’ he said. 

There has been a dramatic shift in tone from the government in the last several days. 

At the start of the week, President Trump was advising Americans not to panic and even said the virus would ‘go away’. 

He then shut the border to Europeans, and said on Thursday that even US citizens who test positive for the virus would not be allowed to come home. 

Fauci’s prediction was that there will be at least another several weeks of the current mode of crisis, but that it could last up to two months. 

‘It will be at least a matter of several weeks. It’s unpredictable, but if you look at historically how these things work, it will likely be anywhere from a few weeks to up to eight weeks. 

It’s like buying a printer without the ink: California receives COVID-19 tests that are MISSING PARTS

California Gov. Gavin Newsom

California Gov. Gavin Newsom fumed on Thursday that the CDC had sent hospitals and labs COVID-19 tests with some of the crucial parts missing. 

In a press conference, he said: ‘The test kits do not include in every case the RNA extraction kits, the reagents, the chemicals, the solutions that are components of the broader tests. 

‘This is imperative that the federal government and labs across the United States, not just state of California, get the benefit of all the ingredients, the components of the test. 

‘I am surprised this is not more of the national conversation. 

‘I think it’s very much in line with your going to the store and purchasing a printer but forgetting to purchase the ink.’ 

Fauci, addressing the disastrous testing blunder on Friday morning, said it was ‘unfortunate’.  

‘I hope it’s going to be in the earlier part, two, three, four weeks, but it’s impossible to make an accurate prediction,’ he said. 

Later, in an interview with CBS, he said it was one of the worst things he had seen in his 36-year career. 

‘I mean, there have been an awful lot of challenges over the 36 years that I’ve been doing this. 

‘Obviously HIV/AIDS, that was a disruption for beginning a very selected demographic group in the country even though there was a lot of general fear.

‘With regard to disruption of everyday life, we have not seen that before. We’ve not had this kind of a situation before. 

‘I mean, we’ve had pandemics, the 2009 H1N1 swine flu was a pandemic, but it was influenza. 

‘We were familiar with what influenza does. Familiar with its seasonal capability.

‘Right now there are a lot of unknowns, I think that’s the thing that’s frightening people.’ 

Fauci told congress on Thursday that the healthcare system had was failing and that there were not enough tests to go around or get done fast enough. 

On Friday, he was more optimistic and said ‘very soon’ there will be wider scope for testing but he did not give specifics of where these tests would be available and who was producing them. 

Experts say one of the largest problems is that so many people who are not yet showing symptoms are continuing the spread the virus without knowing it. 

Because of the lack of tests, only those who show symptoms and seem ill are being given them. 

That will change soon, Fauci said. 

‘The system as it was designed, was designed for what it was designed for. 

‘Let’s look ahead, and I believe what we’re hearing at the task force that we are now getting into that phase where we’ll be able to really scale it up a lot. 

‘I think in the next week or so, you’re going to see an acceleration of availability of tests. 

‘Right now as I’ve mentioned many times and I’ll stick by it, early on, the way the system was designed, as good a system as it was, it was not a design to approach that broad blanket testing.

‘We’re on our way to that now, and we’ll be able to do it relatively soon,’ he said. 

To CBS, he added: ‘It’s not going to all happen tomorrow or the next day. 

‘It’s going to start going like this — that relatively soon that kind of issue that was just mentioned by the person who spoke hopefully will no longer be existing.’ 

However all the tests currently being used take several days to make a positive diagnosis.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Thursday night that the situation may remain like this for six months. 

He has taken the extraordinary step of declaring a state of emergency and banning gatherings of 500 people or more in the city. 

Any businesses that choose to remain open whose capacity is less than that has been told to operate at no more than 50 percent occupancy. 

It puts an incredible strain on businesses. 

‘We’re worried about people’s livelihoods… we’re worried about people being able to pay their rent,’ de Blasio said on Thursday night.

Trump said on Thursday afternoon that any Americans who are overseas and who test positive for coronavirus will not be allowed back into the country. 

There is grave concern over what is being done though to test people when they get back to the US, or even.

The stock market has tanked as a result of the pandemic, dropping 2,000 points on Thursday in the worst day of trading for decades.

The Federal Reserve Bank has injected $1.5 trillion into the market to stop them from falling again. 

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says coronavirus crisis could last up to NINE MONTHS as he opens drive-thru testing in contained town New Rochelle which will serve 200 cars per day

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Friday that the coronavirus crisis could last up to nine months as he opened a drive-thru testing facility in the town of New Rochelle, one of the most intense clusters of the virus in the country.

The testing facility will serve 200 cars per day and residents must call ahead to book an appointment first. 

People who are most at risk, like the elderly or sick who have underlying conditions and are showing symptoms of COVID-19, will be prioritized with appointments.

Cuomo said it was a safer way to test for positive cases because potentially infected people are not walking into hospitals and exposing others to the virus. 

A group of healthcare workers at the drive-thru facility on Friday 

He said the drive-thru would stay open for as long as the crisis lasted, and warned the public that it would be far longer than they may have initially planned for. 

‘I don’t believe that this is gong to be a short term issue. We’re looking at a matter of months. People should start to calibrate that into their expectation. 

‘I think this could be six, seven, eight, nine-month affair. 

‘Watching the trajectory of the virus. People should start to recognize that. 

‘This is not going to be over in 30 days. It’s not going to be over in a couple of weeks.

‘There’ll be waves – it’ll go a little higher, a little slower – but it’s going to be a somewhat prolonged situation. 

‘We should be ready for that,’ Cuomo said. 

He also applied pressure on the federal government to release power of testing to the states to allow them to conduct their own. 

Cuomo said there were 200 private labs in New York that routinely test people for HIV and Zika that he could mobilize if he was given the ability to. 

Police were on hand to funnel the traffic after scores of cars showed up at the facility on Friday, without appointments, to be tested

Medical personnel arrive to start working at the facility. They all have to cover their clothes, faces and hair when they conduct the tests

The federal government is being crucified for its slow response to the virus. 

Originally, it only allowed people to have their tests run at the CDC’s HQ in Atlanta, Georgia. 

Then, CDC tests were sent to state public health labs but some, like in California, have arrived without all the necessary parts to complete a diagnosis. 


The drive-thru testing facility in New Rochelle has six lanes. 

Residents pick a lane and are called forward where health professionals in hazmat suits then give them a swab test. They give the health professionals their details then drive away. 

The facility then will send the tests to a lab. From there, after a period of several days, the test will be returned to the health workers who will then make contact with the person who gave the sample. 

Not everyone will be able to drive there and receive a test. 

Because of the density of cases in New Rochelle, many flocked to the facility on Friday and lines of up to three hours quickly formed.

No one will be tested without an appointment, and at the moment, appointments are only being given to the people most at risk. 

They are the elderly or the sick who have preexisting health conditions and are showing symptoms of COVID-19. 

Cuomo however hopes to get to a position soon where everyone who wants one will be able to get a test.  

The government says it is working with private companies to use their tests, but the harsh reality is there are simply not enough to go around and not enough staff in labs to keep up with the demand for them. 

Gov. Cuomo said that if it were left in his hands, the state of New York would be able to 1,000 tests per lab, per day. 

In New York’s private labs alone, that would allow for 200,000 tests to be done a day. 

He said he is in constant contact with Vice President Pence and has asked him to consider letting go of the reins. 

‘Rather than try to control it all through Washington, the volume is just too high – states regularly regulate labs. We have 200 private labs in New York. 

‘Those labs are doing HIV testing, Zika testing – our state department of health routinely regulates them.

‘Say to the state governments, God bless you – you can authorize testing, automated testing which takes a lab capacity from 30 tests per day to 1,000 tests per day. 

‘We have a crisis in testing. We’re not up to scale. You need to change that quickly,’ he said. 

The drive-thru testing facility in New Rochelle has six lanes. 

Residents pick a lane and are called forward where health professionals in hazmat suits then give them a swab test. They give the health professionals their details then drive away. 

The facility then will send the tests to a lab. From there, after a period of several days, the test will be returned to the health workers who will then make contact with the person who gave the sample. 

Not everyone will be able to drive there and receive a test.    

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