Three US states begin to reopen as death toll passes 50,000

Three US states begin to reopen as US death toll passes 50,000
Spas and salons could reopen in Oklahoma and Georgia. Source: Reuters
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Daily US Times: Three US states have allowed some shops to reopen despite the country’s death toll passed 51,000. Salons and spas are about to open in these states which were under lockdown in an attempt to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Spas and salons could reopen in Oklahoma and Georgia while Alaska lifted restrictions on restaurants.

President Donald Trump on Friday walked out of a shorter than usual briefing, refusing to take questions.

The president has been facing huge criticism after suggesting that injecting household disinfectant into patients could be beneficial.

Doctors and manufacturers are condemned Trump’s comments as ‘dangerous’. Disinfectants are hazardous substances and can be poisonous if ingested, and even external exposure can be dangerous to eyes respiratory system and skin.

Trump said on Friday that his comments were sarcastic and taken out of context.

What is happening in the three states?

In Oklahoma and Georgia, customers are visiting newly reopened business and Alaska will be expected to continue adhering to social distancing measures, while some cities and areas are still considering staying under lockdown.

In Georgia, which has one of the fastest reopening timetables in the country, bowling alleys, hair and nail salons, tattoo parlors, spas, and other personal care businesses will be allowed to resume operations. On Monday, theatres and dine-in restaurants will be allowed to re-open.

Many US states are feeling the pressure to resume trading as unemployment claims reaching 26 million people – or around 15% of the population.

But health experts are warning about the measures. They say this steps might be happening too soon and could spark another wave of infections.

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp tightened some of the social distancing and sanitation requirements for restaurants after being criticised by Donald Trump.

What else happened on Friday?

In the White House briefing that lasted just over 20 minutes, Mr Trump asked people to use face masks and to continue to follow rules around social distancing.

Mr Trump on Friday signed a $484bn (£391bn) economic stimulus bill into law, saying he wanted to “rush economic relief to our citizens”. It is the fourth Covid-19 relief package passed by the government and allocates funds towards greater testing, hospitals, and a small business loan program.

What are the US numbers?

The US has far the highest death toll in the world. But despite recording more than 890,000 cases, the US population of 330 million is much higher than other countries badly hit by the virus, such as Italy and Spain.

The recent sharp rise in the daily US death toll are partly due to the inclusion of “probable” virus deaths – on 14 April, the CDC said their case counts would include both confirmed and probable cases and deaths.

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