COVID-19: Here's what you need to know today

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COVID-19: Here's what you need to know today

Thursday, March 26, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — More than 2.6 billion people —one third of humanity— are now under lockdown conditions in global efforts to contain the novel coronavirus pandemic which has infected almost half a million people and killed over 22,000. Over 109,000 people have recovered so far, mostly in China. Here's the latest on this global crisis:

— In Jamaica, one more case of the novel coronavirus was confirmed yesterday, bringing to 26 the total number of confirmed cases. This includes 18 imported cases, seven import-related cases and one likely imported case which is being investigated. The Health Ministry also announced that the quarantine which was placed on the community of Seven Miles and Eight Miles, Bull Bay, in St Andrew, is to be lifted on Saturday, March 28.

— The Caribbean Examination Council today announced the strategy it will employ for the administration of the 2020 CSEC/CAPE examinations, in light of the COVID-19 outbreak across the region. At least one common paper (Multiple Choice Assessments) will be administered as well as School Based Assessments (SBAs) and paper 032s, which is a SBA alternate for private candidates and, award final grades will be awarded based on the moderate SBAs and multiple choice papers.

—The Trinidad and Tobago government today announced that all non-essential workers would have to remain at home from Sunday, insisting that the measure should not be viewed as a total lockdown of the country or the introduction of a state of emergency to deal with the impact of the coronavirus.

— Venezuela reported its first coronavirus death on Thursday after a 47-year-old man with a pre-existing lung disease died, the government said.

— The United States now has the highest number ofconfirmedcoronaviruscasesin the world, surpassing both China and Italy, according to data gathered both by Johns Hopkins University and The New York Times.

Johns Hopkins said the US has 82,404cases, while the Times said there were at least 81,321 people who tested positive for COVID-19.

— Nearly 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, which is more than quadruple the previous record set in 1982.

— Spain was highlighted as the country in Europe where the coronavirus outbreak is expanding fastest, only second to the United States.

— Spain's Health Ministry reported 8,578 new infections and 655 deaths, bringing the total infections to 56,188 and more than 4,000 fatalities.

— Italy's initial steep rise in confirmed cases has started to level off more than two weeks into a nationwide lockdown as the country reported 5,210 new cases and 683 deaths.

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