US pushes ahead with school reopening despite surge in cases
US education secretary Betsy DeVos has continued the administration’s push to reopen the country’s schools, albeit without outlining how this could be done safely.
“We know that children get the virus at a far lower rate than any other part of the population. There is nothing in the data that would suggest that kids being back in school is dangerous to them,” DeVos told CNN’s “State of the Union.”
She did not offer a blueprint for reopening, or share details on how her department would support states and schools to reopen safely. DeVos also downplayed the risk that children might bring home the virus and pass it on to vulnerable family members.
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was immediately critical of the comments, saying that the Trump administration’s approach to schools reopening was dangerous.
“What we heard from the secretary was malfeasance and dereliction of duty,” Pelosi said on CNN. “Going back to school presents the biggest risk for the spread of the coronavirus. If there are CDC guidelines, they should be requirements. They should be mandates, not requirements.”
According to Reuters, coronavirus infections are rising in about 40 states. Nationally, the US has broken global records by registering about 60,000 new cases a day for the last four days in a row.
Canada’s attempts to fast-track foreign-trained doctors to meet the demand created by coronavirus has resulted in just two dozen licenses approved in Ontario and none in British Columbia, according to medical colleges in both provinces.
British Columbia had created a new class of license that would allow overseas-trained doctors to practice while being supervised by a fully licensed doctor, while Ontario established a short-term license program that would allow hospitals to hire internationally trained doctors on short notice.
Immigrant doctors and their advocates say the poor update comes from logistical and communications failings, alleging that the requirements for the new license categories didn’t help more physicians to apply, and were poorly communicated to applicants and hospitals.
Canada’s understaffed healthcare system has long been an electoral talking point. Last year, a report from the Canadian Institute of Health Information found that Canada had 241 physicians per 100,000 people, more than 100 less than the OECD average.
Lebanon has recorded more than 100 new coronavirus infections since yesterday, its highest daily increase yet.
Around 75% of the cases were among workers of a cleaning company, and were asymptomatic, and non-Lebanese, according to health minister Hamad Hassan.
To reassure people, the source is known,” health minister Hamad Hassan told broadcaster LB. Hassan said 800 workers from the cleaning company needed to be tested, alongside 1,000 workers from two other companies with whom they were connected.
“The number will remain high this week,” he said.
Lebanon has recorded more than 2,000 cases of coronavirus and 36 deaths since February.