Updates: NYC delays return to classroom – again

  • New York City pushed back the first day of in-person classes for most of its elementary, middle and high school students, the second delay in a rocky return to the classroom for the nation's largest school district.
  • Attorney General William Barr drew criticism after calling lockdown measures aimed at controlling the spread of COVID-19 the worst infringement on civil liberties other than slavery.
  • More than 790,000 Americans filed for unemployment insurance for the first time last week, the Labor Department said.
  • After a Massachusetts high school student who tested positive for COVID-19 attended in-person classes, dozens of other students were put under quarantine.

Staying Safe

What to do if you think you have coronavirus

Here’s what to know about the symptoms and what to do if you have them. It's important to take precautions to protect not only your health, but also that of others.

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Can you reuse a disposable mask?

Here's how to safely remove, clean, store and reuse your disposable mask.

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How to be safe when socializing

Is there a safe way to see family or friends while following social-distancing guidelines?

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What is contact tracing, and how does it work?

The goal of contact tracing is to alert people who may have been exposed to someone with the coronavirus, and prevent them from spreading it to others.

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Can coronavirus spread through the air?

The World Health Organization recently acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions.

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Can you get the coronavirus twice?

Health experts think people who had COVID-19 will have some immunity against a repeat infection. But they don’t know how much protection or how long it would last.

How safe is outdoor dining?

Are you helping or hurting the people involved in the restaurant business by dining out? Experts weigh in.

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Can plastic face shields protect you from the coronavirus?

Plastic face shields are most frequently worn by nurses or doctors who are very close to patients who may be exposed to droplets that contain the coronavirus.

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What's the risk of getting coronavirus outside vs. inside?

The virus does spread more easily indoors, but you should still follow social distancing guidelines to protect yourself outside.

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Is it safe to go to the gym?

Whether or not it is safe to return to the gym has become a puzzling question for people as the number of COVID-19 cases continue to rise in many states.

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Debunking coronavirus conspiracies

Two doctors address some of the false medical claims in a popular viral video.

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Public health glossary

What's the difference between quarantine and isolation? Here's a guide to the public health terms used in the coronavirus coverage.

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WHO's FAQ guide

See the World Health Organization's FAQ guide to get informed about the coronavirus.

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Why Singapore's COVID death rate is world's lowest

Singapore, the city state of 5.7 million people has seemingly weathered the COVID-19 storm better than anywhere else in the world, with a death rate of only 0.05% - way lower than the global average of about 3% -- even among countries of similar size like Denmark and Finland. It means that of the 57,000 infections there's only been 27 deaths in Singapore. But how has the island managed such a feat? Singapore's leading disease experts said there's a number of factors behind the country's success. First: Singapore was very successful in containing the spread of the virus through early detection using aggressive contact tracing and testing that won praise from the WHO. It has tested nearly 900,000 people - one of the highest per capita rates globally. Dormitory residents have been put on a rostered testing regime, authorities have undertaken mass testing among vulnerable communities including care homes, and anyone over 13 with signs of acute respiratory infection is offered a free test. This pre-emptive approach has also been applied to treatment. Doctors said that COVID-19 patients above 45 years or with underlying conditions are cared for in hospital even if they are otherwise well. It also built up bed space for coronavirus patients in exhibition halls and temporary facilities to house those with mild or no symptoms. This prevented the healthcare system from being overwhelmed so that attention and resources could be focused on the more severe cases. It's difficult to compare across borders, though. Singapore strictly adheres to the WHO's case definition for classifying COVID-19 deaths. So it does not include non-pneumonia fatalities like those caused by blood or heart issues among COVID-19 patients in its official tally. The country's health ministry has said its approach is consistent with international practice.
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