BY: WILLIAM MANSELL AND SAMARA LYNN, ABC NEWS
(NEW YORK) — The novel coronavirus has now killed more than 762,000 people worldwide.
More than 21.1 million people across the globe have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new respiratory virus, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The actual numbers are believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases and suspicions that some national governments are hiding or downplaying the scope of their outbreaks.
The United States is the worst-affected country in the world, with more than 5.3 million diagnosed cases and at least 168,446 deaths.
Here’s how the news is developing today. All times Eastern. Please refresh this page for updates.
10:22 a.m.: NY announces lowest COVID hospitalizations, record testing
On Saturday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said New York had its lowest number of COVID-19 hospitalizations since March 17. The governor also announced a record-high in the number of tests.
Since March 17, hospitalizations have dropped to 523; the number of COVID-19 tests reported to New York State is at 88,668.
“In New York, we knew from the beginning that testing would be a key factor in controlling this new virus. We ramped up testing immediately and took a nation-leading role in developing capacity to test as many New Yorkers as possible, and I’m proud that we continue to raise the bar and we’ve broken our record high once again,” Cuomo said. “Yesterday’s numbers — especially the new low in hospitalizations — continue to reflect the progress we’ve made during this pandemic, but we will keep monitoring the data and the alarming increases in cases around the country. My message is the same: stay New York Smart, wash your hands, socially distance, and wear masks!”
Gov. Cuomo also confirmed 734 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 424,901 confirmed cases in New York State, with the highest concentration in New York City.
As of Friday, there were five deaths due to COVID-19 in New York state, bringing the total to 25,244.
6:43 a.m.: University of Notre Dame reports 29 cases of COVID-19
The University of Notre Dame reported 29 cases of COVID-19 in a one-week period, reports the South Bend Tribune.
The cases were from Aug. 6 to Aug. 14. On Friday, Aug. 14, the university reported 10 new cases.
Notre Dame’s spokesperson, Paul Browne, told the South Bend Tribune that many of the COVID-19 cases were traced to an off-campus party where students didn’t wear masks and didn’t practice social distancing.
“What is reinforces is our concern that it only takes a weak link. You can have a strong chain, but if you have only one weak link, it can cause numbers to spike,” Brown said. “Notre Dame officials believe they can still get the virus under control without canceling in-person classes and sending students home.”
The virus not only struck students who attended the party, but some who came in contact with those who attended,” Browne said.
6:22 a.m.: Florida high school sports start date approved
Fall high school sports in Florida are a go after the Florida High School Athletics Association voted Friday to begin sports throughout in the Sunshine State on Aug. 24.
Practices can begin this month with games set to resume in September. Teams, according to FHSAA, can start later and not opt-in to state-wide play due to coronavirus hot spots.
The organization also said that “schools may opt out of the State Series by September 18th with the ability to form their own regional schedule upon approval from the FHSAA.”
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been a strong advocate for reopening schools and sports in the state, despite the summer surge in cases and deaths.
“To our parents – you deserve the choice of in-person instruction or distance learning and I’m glad that so many school districts are making this vision a reality,” DeSantis said a press conference this week. “To our teachers and school administrators – thank you for refusing to let obstacles stand in the way of providing opportunities for our kids. This has been a difficult time, but I believe your hard work will do more than you know to get our society back on its feet.”
In Florida, more than 563,000 people have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and at least 9,141 people have died of the virus.
The state reported more than 6,200 new COVID-19 cases and 200 deaths on Friday.
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