Blacks make up as many as 30% of COVID-19 cases, per early CDC figures

In cases where race is known, nearly a third of them are African Americans.

April 16, 2020, 9:30 PM

More than 2.1 million people have been infected with the novel coronavirus worldwide as the pandemic continues to affect every aspect of people's lives.

The global death toll stands at more than 141,000 people, 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 a number of deaths in which a person is not tested for the virus.

Many municipalities have begun counting probable deaths caused by COVID-19, including New York City, the epicenter of the disease in the United States.

The U.S. has more cases and deaths than any country in the world, with more than 653,000 diagnosed cases and at least 30,998 deaths.

Today's biggest developments:

  • Birx, Fauci lay out details of reopening guidelines
  • New York extends shutdown in coordination with Northeast states
  • UK will stay on lockdown for next 3 weeks
  • Midwest governors form coalition to reopen their states
  • NJ governor 'outraged that bodies of the dead' piled up at nursing home
  • Here's how the news is developing today. All times Eastern. Please refresh this page for updates.

    8:53 p.m.: Black Americans have disproportionate number of cases: CDC

    Of the novel coronavirus cases in the U.S. in which person’s race was identified, 30 percent of those people were black or African American, according to new nationwide statistics posted online by the CDC.

    That’s despite being only about 13 percent of the U.S. population.

    The federal government has provided very little data on who is getting sick, and this single nationwide statistic still provides a limited look at who is the most vulnerable. Race was identified in only about a quarter of the cases known to the CDC and the agency was expected to provide updated data.

    The new data also is limited to positive cases and does not note the outcomes, such as hospitalizations, ICU admissions or deaths.

    7:18 p.m.: Birx, Fauci lay out details of reopening guidelines

    Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House's coronavirus response coordinator, and Dr. Anthon Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, provided more details and insight into the president's reopening guidelines that were provided to governors earlier today.

    Speaking at the Coronavirus Task Force's daily briefing, Birx said the White House won't be setting up timelines to scale back their shelter in place orders.

    "We want the governors with the data that they have, community by community, to be setting up those timelines," she said.

    Birx added that health officials will be watching vulnerable areas, including nursing homes, during the initial phases.

    Dr. Deborah Birx, White House coronavirus response coordinator, speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, April 16, 2020, in Washington.
    Alex Brandon/AP

    "When we talked with all of the states that had not had a major metro outbreak, their sentinel surveillances picked up always the first cases in nursing homes," she said.

    Fauci said during the third phase of the reopening it may be conceivable to see things like packed arenas for sporting events, large crowds, and concerts.

    "I think there will always have to be attention to making sure that we don't do all of that packing in together. I think we’ll be able to have sports events in that phase where you actually have participants there," he said.

    Fauci warned this is still "uncharted water."

    "There may be some setbacks that we may have to pull back a little and then go forward," he said.

    6:36 p.m.: NYPD to wear mourning bands

    NYPD officers will wear black mourning bands on patrol in honor of their fallen members until the pandemic is over, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said in a message to his members that was obtained by ABC News.

    So far, the force has had 27 of its members perish from COVID-19 related complications, which is more than the number of NYPD members who were killed in the 9/11 terror attacks.

    The fallen members include six officers, five detectives, five school safety agents, four traffic agents, three 911 operators, two custodians, a police administrative aide and a senior police administrative aide.

    "This unprecedented crisis has already taken a significant toll on our NYPD family," Shea wrote. "We vow never to forget our heroes’ service and sacrifice."

    6:06 p.m.: NYC cancels all permitted May events, will decide on June soon

    New York City has ordered that all permitted events in the month of May cancelled, Olivia Lapeyrolerie, a spokeswoman for the mayor's office, said.

    This includes the Brooklyn half marathon and several Memorial Day parades, such as the annual marches in Queens.

    Runners during the final leg of the Brooklyn Half Marathon in New York, May 18, 2013.
    Michael Nagle/The New York Times via Redux, FILE

    "We are in the process of reviewing June events and will be engaging with key stakeholders," she said in a statement, adding that the office will have more information by the end of the week.

    5:41 p.m.: Navy identifies sailor who died from COVID-19

    The U.S. Navy provided more information about the sailor assigned to the USS Theodore Roosevelt who died from coronavirus complications on April 13.

    Aviation Ordnanceman Chief Petty Officer Charles Robert Thacker Jr., of Forth Smith, Arkansas, was diagnosed with the virus on March 30, removed from the ship and placed in isolation at the Naval Base in Guam, according to the Navy. The 41-year-old sailor was placed in the ICU on April 9th, the Navy said.

    Aviation Ordnanceman Chief Petty Officer Charles Robert Thacker Jr., 41, of Fort Smith, Ark., is pictured in a photo released by the U.S. Navy. He was assigned to the USS Theodore Roosevelt and died from COVID-19 on April 13, 2020.
    U.S. Navy

    Thacker's spouse, who is an active duty member stationed in San Diego, was flown to Guam the next day and was at his side during his final hours, according to the Navy.

    "Our thoughts and prayers are with the family during this difficult time," Capt. Carlos Sardiello, Theodore Roosevelt's commanding officer, said in a statement.

    5:08 p.m.: Boeing to restart work at Washington facilities

    Boeing announced it would restart work at all of its facilities in the Puget Sound region of Washington state next week.

    Approximately 27,000 employees will return to production of the 747, 767, 777 and 787 programs as early as April 20, the company said. Extra safety precautions will be administered including staggered shift times, face masks and PPE for employees, markers on the floor that help to indicate 6-feet distances and more hand washing facilities.

    PHOTO: The Boeing Everett Factory is pictured after Boeing announced a temporary suspension of production operations at its Puget Sound area facilities, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in Everett, Washington, March 23, 2020.
    FILE PHOTO: The Boeing Everett Factory is pictured after Boeing announced a temporary suspension of production operations at its Puget Sound area facilities, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in Everett, Washington, March 23, 2020. The company said it plans to send 2,500 of its 30,000 production employees in the Puget Sound region back to work starting April 20.
    David Ryder/Reuters

    "This phased approach ensures we have a reliable supply base, our personal protective equipment is readily available and we have all of the necessary safety measures in place to resume essential work for our customers," Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said in a statement.

    Boeing closed down its Washington facilities in March as the number of coronavirus cases began surging in the state.

    4:30 p.m.: Trump releases guidelines to reopen country

    President Donald Trump unveiled his administration's plans to reopen the American economy in a video conference call with the nation's governors.

    The guidelines, obtained by ABC News, are broken up into three phases. Governors were instructed that they could move through the phases at their own pace, and that the guidelines are not orders from the government, according to a person familiar with call.

    A pedestrian passes a business which has closed temporarily in San Antonio, Texas, March 24, 2020.
    Eric Gay/AP

    The guidelines' "phase one" calls on employers to telework where possible, have employees return to work in phases, minimize non-essential travel, and make accommodations for vulnerable populations.

    In "phase two," non-essential travel for employers can resume. Schools, gyms and large venues can reopen with proper social distancing measures. Churches can open with social distancing and elective surgeries can resume.

    A sign alerts customers that a business in Queens, which has one of the highest infection rates of coronavirus in the nation, is closed on April 03, 2020, in New York.
    Spencer Platt/Getty Images

    The third phase says bars, gyms and large venues can reopen with limited social distancing and proper sanitation.

    Trump, who had previously stated he had the authority to open up the economy, told the governors he would defer to them for specific dates on removing shelter in place orders, according to audio of the meeting obtained by ABC News.

    "Before we do any announcements, we want to speak to the governors. You're going to be running it, we're going to be helping you," he said.

    Tune into ABC at 1 p.m. ET and ABC News Live at 4 p.m. ET every weekday for special coverage of the novel coronavirus with the full ABC News team, including the latest news, context and analysis.

    4 p.m.: 52 veteran residents dead at Holyoke Soldiers' Home in Mass.

    At the Holyoke Soldiers' Home in Massachusetts, 52 veteran residents have died, including 44 who tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the state's Office of Health and Human Services.

    Seven of those residents tested negative for the virus. It was not clear if the final resident contracted the virus.

    A tent sits idle beside the entrance to the Soldiers' Home, April 6, 2020, in Chelsea, Mass.
    Elise Amendola/AP

    Ninety-seven veteran residents and 81 employees have tested positive for the coronavirus.

    The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts and the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division are conducting a joint investigation to determine whether the facility "violated the rights of residents by failing to provide them adequate medical care generally, and during the coronavirus pandemic," according to a statement from the agencies.

    Gov. Charlie Baker has also called for an independent investigation by attorney Mark W. Pearlstein, which will focus on "the events inside the facility that led to" the deaths, and "on management and organizational oversight of the COVID-19 response."

    3:30 p.m.: More NJ coronavirus victims than residents killed in WWI

    New Jersey has now lost 3,518 people to the coronavirus -- more than the number of residents in the state killed in World War I, Gov. Phil Murphy said.

    Like in many states, coronavirus is disproportionately impacting African Americans in New Jersey.

    Of the state's fatalities, 51.1% are white, 22.5% are American American. Murphy called the percentage of African American fatalities a concern, calling it "50-plus %" higher than the overall representation in the population;

    As of Thursday, 8,224 coronavirus patients are in New Jersey hospitals, including 2,014 people in intensive care units, Murphy said.

    New Jersey police officers and health workers are seen in a newly approved saliva-based COVID-19 testing site during the coronavirus pandemic, in Edison, New Jersey, April 15, 2020.
    Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

    3 p.m.: Facebook canceling events with 50 or more people through June 2021

    Facebook is canceling physical events with 50 or more people through June 2021, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said.

    He said some events would be held virtually instead.

    Most Facebook employees will work from home through at least the end of May 2020.

    "Even after more of our teams can return, if there's any reason they feel they can't work in our offices -- because they are in a vulnerable population, because with schools and camps canceled they don't have childcare, or anything else -- that they can plan to work from home through at least the summer," Zuckerberg said.

    2:30 p.m.: Midwest governors form coalition to reopen their states

    The governors of Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky announced Thursday that they'll work together to reopen the Midwest economics.

    Rick Wittenmyer shops for groceries at the West Side Market, April 10, 2020, in Cleveland.
    Tony Dejak/AP

    The governors said in a joint statement that they'll look at four factors to determine when is best to reopen: "sustained control" of infection and hospitalization rates; "enhanced ability" to test and trace; "sufficient health care capacity" for resurgence; and social distancing practice prepared for workplaces.

    "This doesn’t mean our economy will reopen all at once, or that every state will take the same steps at the same time," the governors' statement said, "But close coordination will ensure we get this right."

    1:55 p.m.: NJ governor 'outraged that bodies of the dead' piled up at nursing home

    New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said Thursday that he's "outraged that bodies of the dead were allowed to pile up in a makeshift morgue" at a New Jersey nursing home.

    Murphy said he asked the attorney general to investigate the deaths at the Andover Subacute and Rehab Center.

    "New Jerseyans deserve to be cared for with respect, compassion and dignity," Murphy said.

    An ambulance departs with a patient from Andover Subacute and Rehab Center, during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Andover, New Jersey, April 16, 2020.
    Stefan Jeremiah/Reuters

    New Jersey's Department of Health said the facility has had 35 deaths, including 19 from coronavirus, in recent weeks.

    At least 103 residents have COVID-19, the health department said.

    New Jersey Congressman Josh Gottheimer claims 68 people have died at the nursing home, which is in his district.

    In a Thursday morning interview with ABC New York station WABC, Gottheimer said he "just got off phone with administrator ... they have 68 lives lost ... It's horrific."

    One of the two buildings of Andover Subacute and Rehabilitation Center, in Andover N.J., April 15, 2020.
    Gregg Vigliotti/The New York Times via Redux

    The investigation comes after a number of bodies were removed this week. According to police, the first clue was a request for 25 body bags.

    "When they called Saturday they were desperate for body bags," Gottheimer said.

    Investigators initially discovered five bodies in the facility’s holding area. In subsequent days they were tipped off to a body being stored in a shed. No bodies were seen in the shed but investigators then found another 12 bodies in the holding area.

    The owner of the center said in a statement, "The health and safety of our residents and staff is our utmost priority and responsibility. Ownership and administration is working around the clock to ensure we are able to resolve the pandemic."

    "To clarify previous news reports, there was a total of 15 bodies in our holding room on April 13th," the statement said. "8 of them actually expired on April 13th and a total of 13 bodies were removed before midnight and occurred with the assistance of Andover police department."

    A team has been sent to help the residents and staff at the rehab center, Murphy said.

    The governor also said the attorney general will "do a review of all long-term care facilities that have experienced a disproportionate number of deaths" during the pandemic.

    12:55 p.m.: Trump discusses coronavirus with G-7 leaders

    President Trump discussed the coronavirus pandemic with G-7 leaders in a conference call on Thursday, joined by the leaders of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan.

    According to the White House, "The leaders recognized that the G7 nations annually contribute more than a billion dollars to the World Health Organization (WHO), and much of the conversation centered on the lack of transparency and chronic mismanagement of the pandemic by the WHO."

    President Donald Trump speaks during the daily briefing on the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, in the Rose Garden at the White House on April 15, 2020, in Washington.
    Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

    The White House said the G-7 "leaders called for a thorough review and reform process."

    Readouts from other countries dispute the White House account.

    A readout from Germany said Chancellor Angela Merkel "expressed her full support for the WHO."

    The U.K's readout of the call made no mention of the WHO.

    A Downing Street spokesperson said, "Leaders discussed the particular risk coronavirus poses to developing nations and agreed on the need to fight coronavirus in every country."

    PHOTO: A handout image released by 10 Downing Street, shows President Donald Trump on the screen and Britain's Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, right, attending a remote G7 meeting inside 10 Downing Street, in central London, on April 16, 2020.
    A handout image released by 10 Downing Street, shows President Donald Trump on the screen and Britain's Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, right, attending a remote G7 meeting inside 10 Downing Street, in central London, on April 16, 2020, during the novel coronavirus COVID-19.
    Andrew Parsons/10 Downing Street/AFP via Getty Images

    Trump said Tuesday that his administration was halting funding to the WHO, accusing it of "severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus" and said the organization even "pushed China’s misinformation about the virus."

    "With the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have deep concerns whether America’s generosity has been put to the best use possible," Trump said.

    WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Wednesday, "The United States has been a longstanding and generous friend to WHO, and we hope it will continue to be so ... We regret the decision of the president of the United States to order a halt in funding to WHO."

    12:30 p.m.: UK will stay on lockdown for next 3 weeks

    The United Kingdom will stay on lockdown for the next three weeks, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announced Thursday, explaining that relaxing measures at this stage would be a risk to the public.

    A woman passes a closed shop in Central London, Britain, April 16, 2020.
    Will Oliver/EPA via Shutterstock

    The U.K.'s lockdown has been in place since March 23. Schools, restaurants and most shops are closed, and people are allowed to leave home only for essential errands or exercise.

    Over 13,000 people have died in the U.K.

    Raab said five steps must be accomplished before it's safe to change the current measure: the National Health Service must be able to cope; there must be a sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rate; there must be a falling rate of infection across the board; need to have more PPE and testing; and need to be certain that a second peak will not happen.

    12:05 p.m.: New York shutdown extended to May 15

    In hard-hit New York state, 606 lives were lost on Wednesday.

    A makeshift morgue is set up outside Lenox Hill Hospital during the coronavirus pandemic, on April 15, 2020, in New York City.
    Cindy Ord/Getty Images

    However, intubations are down, the hospitalization rate is down and ICU admissions are down, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Thursday.

    "It means we can control the virus," he said. "We did not know for sure we could do that."

    Cuomo said New York's shutdown -- in coordination with other Northeast states -- will be extended to May 15.

    "I don't want to project beyond that period," Cuomo said.

    A man wearing a face mask walks by a pizzeria near the Brooklyn Hospital Center with a sign of support for doctors and nurses, on April 15, 2020, in New York City, amid the novel coronavirus outbreak.
    Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

    "The close down has worked," he said, "however, we're not there yet."

    Cuomo announced Monday that seven Northeast states -- New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts -- were joining forces to create a reopening plan.

    A woman and child wear protective masks during the coronavirus pandemic, on April 15, 2020, in New York City.
    Cindy Ord/Getty Images

    Cuomo said Thursday he needs a "coordinated action plan" with the other states.

    Going forward, the phased return to the "new normal" will involve determining how essential a business is and how risky it is for spreading the virus, Cuomo said.

    A sign posted on a door reads 'for safety of staff a mask or scarf is required to enter office' on April 15, 2020, in New York City.
    Cindy Ord/Getty Images

    Businesses must have new practices when they reopen, he said, like making sure employees can get to work safely and ensuring the workplace is designed to include social distancing measures.

    The governor called testing the "single-best tool to inform decisions."

    Cuomo said New York -- home to 19 million people -- conducted 500,000 tests in 30 days, which he said was more than California, Florida and Michigan combined.

    10:30 a.m.: NYC expected to lose $7.4 billion in tax revenue

    In New York City -- hit the hardest by the pandemic in the U.S. -- 386 people suspected of having coronavirus were admitted to hospitals on Tuesday, which was up from 370 on Monday.

    Medical worker on the night shift outside of a special coronavirus intake area at Maimonides Medical Center, on April 15, 2020, in the Borough Park neighborhood of the Brooklyn, New York.
    Spencer Platt/Getty Images

    The city's ICUs had 887 patients on Tuesday, up from 868 Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said.

    And of the New Yorkers tested for the coronavirus on Tuesday, 55% were positive -- up from 53% on Monday.

    De Blasio warned Thursday that New York City is expected to lose $7.4 billion in tax revenue over the current and next fiscal year.

    Medical worker on the night shift outside of a special coronavirus intake area at Maimonides Medical Center, on April 15, 2020, in the Borough Park neighborhood of the Brooklyn, New York.
    Spencer Platt/Getty Images

    De Blasio urged President Trump to help New York City get "back on our feet" by providing funds through the next government stimulus.

    "If you lead, the Senate will follow," de Blasio said in a message to Trump.

    Workers organize food to be donated by City Harvest Mobile Market Food Distribution Center, during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease in the Brooklyn borough of New York, April 15, 2020.
    Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

    Meanwhile, the mayor said 11,000 free hotel rooms are being provided for New Yorkers who need to quarantine.

    The rooms will be open to health care workers, the homeless and some living in overcrowded households who cannot socially distance.

    Referrals will begin on April 22 through hospitals and community health providers.

    9 a.m.: Japan declares nationwide state of emergency

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday expanded a state of emergency from seven prefectures to all 47 prefectures in the nation in an attempt to prevent COVID-19 from spreading further.

    People commute to work despite a state of emergency in Japan at Shinagawa station in Tokyo, April 16, 2020.
    Charly Triballeau/AFP/Getty Images

    Tokyo, Osaka, and five other prefectures had been under a state of emergency since April 7.

    Japanese authorities plan to ease restrictions on May 6.

    Japan has 8,626 diagnosed COVID-19 cases and 178 fatalities, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins. This includes figures from the Diamond Princess cruise ship, which was forced to dock in Japan when an outbreak on the ship spread.

    What to know about coronavirus:

    6:38 a.m.: CDC to tour processing plant where hundreds tested positive

    South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem announced that Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials are on the ground in Sioux Falls and will tour a Smithfield Foods plant Thursday "in partnership with state and local officials," Noem said.

    There's been 518 Smithfield employees who have tested positive for novel coronavirus as well as 126 cases of nonemployees that became infected due to an employee, according to the South Dakota Department of Health.

    Noem said the state is "aggressively testing" employees and those they have come into contact with "and as soon as possible getting them into isolation."

    The governor added she's working with federal officials and Smithfield leaders "on a plan to safely reopen the plant to get it back online to bring some relief not only to our egg producers, but to make sure we're continuing to secure our nation's food supply."

    3:55 a.m.: Harry, Meghan help at LA nonprofit

    Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry spent a second day helping out at Project Angel Food, a charity in Los Angeles that feeds people too sick to do so themselves.

    Those facing a hard time during the coronavirus pandemic are being helped with food by the nonprofit.

    The nonprofit was founded by former presidential candidate Marianne Williamson originally to deal with helping those with HIV/AIDS.

    Meghan decided to help on Easter Sunday, and then again on Wednesday, after her mom, Doria Ragland, said the group was in need of volunteers.

    ABC News' Mary Kathryn Burke, Katherine Faulders, Ben Gittleson, Aaron Katersky, Whitney Lloyd, Jordyn Phelps, Kirit Radia, Joe Simonetti, Dimitrije Stejic, Christine Theodorou, Ella Torres and Anastasia Williams contributed to this report.

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