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  • More than 1.2 million people worldwide – including more than 312,000 people in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. as hospitals brace for unprecedented patient surges. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here. Live updates for Saturday, April 5, continue below:  NBA, Knicks, Nets work with Chinese official to donate 1M surgical masks to New York Update 7:50 a.m. EDT April 5: The NBA and two professional basketball teams are working with a Chinese official to provide 1 million surgical masks to “essential workers” in New York. According to Reuters, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the donation – a collaborative effort involving the league, the New York Knicks, the Brooklyn Nets and Chinese Consul General Huang Ping – Saturday on social media. “New York thanks you,” Cuomo tweeted Saturday afternoon. “We are beyond grateful for this gift of critically needed PPE.” >> See the tweet here As of Sunday morning, New York had reported at least 114,174 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 3,565 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. Pope Francis celebrates Palm Sunday Mass without public Update 6:52 a.m. EDT April 5: Amid the coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis took a different approach to his Palm Sunday Mass, typically celebrated outside in St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City with tens of thousands of people looking on. According to The Associated Press, the pope celebrated the Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica. Only a few prelates, nuns and guests were invited to attend, the AP reported. As of Sunday morning, Italy had reported 124,632 COVID-19 cases – the third-highest in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University. Italy also had logged at least 15,362 deaths, more than any other country. Oprah Winfrey donating $10 million to relief efforts Update 5:45 a.m. EDT April 5: Media mogul Oprah Winfrey is donating $10 million amid the coronavirus pandemic, she said last week. In an Instagram post Thursday, Winfrey praised America’s Food Fund, a donation drive started by actor Leonardo DiCaprio, Laurene Powell Jobs, Apple and the Ford Foundation. According to the initiative’s GoFundMe page, it is currently benefiting two food charities: Feeding America and World Central Kitchen, founded by celebrity chef José Andrés. “I was struck by the work these organizations are doing, and while everyone’s priority right now is to stay safer at home, I know there are many of us looking for ways to help,” Winfrey wrote. “I believe that America’s Food Fund will be a powerful way to make a difference for our neighbors in need and am committing $1 million to this fund to support those facing food insecurity.” She added that she is “donating $10 million overall to help Americans during this pandemic in cities across the country and in areas where I grew up.” >> See the post here As of Sunday morning, America’s Food Fund’s crowdfunding campaign had raised more than $13 million toward its $15 million goal. Tokyo to report 143 new cases, breaking city’s single-day record Update 4:43 a.m. EDT April 5: Tokyo on Sunday will report 143 new coronavirus cases, topping the city’s single-day record, the Japan Times is reporting. Japan’s capital city has reported more than 1,000 cases of the virus, according to the newspaper. On Sunday morning, Johns Hopkins University reported 3,139 confirmed coronavirus cases and 77 deaths in Japan. BBB warns of fake coronavirus stimulus check, other scams Update 3:40 a.m. EDT April 5: Scammers across the United States continue to trick people in an attempt to steal their money or information, WHBQ-TV is reporting. The Better Business Bureau said that most of the recent scams reported involves the stimulus checks that the government will be sending out to citizens. Here are some of the scams reported to the BBB this week: A phone call saying that student loans qualify you for immediate COVID-19 relief. The woman who reported this scam said she doesn’t have any student loans. Two Facebook messages from someone posing as a government official that that says you qualify for an immediate COVID-19 grant. Both targets were offered grants of $50,000 to $300,000 if they paid an upfront fee by gift cards or wire. One victim said the person communicating with her was posing as William Barr, U.S. Attorney General. A Facebook message from a “friend” that asks you to call a specified number and give your Social Security Number so you can find out when you’ll get your government relief check. The woman who reported this scam said several of her church members had told her about it thinking it was real. A text message asking for your Social Security Number to see if you qualified for $50,000 from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The money was for seniors affected by coronavirus. A text message stating that if you confirmed your bank account information and paid $50, you could get your stimulus check immediately. The FBI has warned of a text message scam that appears to be from Costco offering you $100 to spend there. The FBI says if you click on the link, malware will be downloaded to your device. The Better Business Bureau said to remember: The government will not ask you to pay anything up front to get the stimulus money. No fees. No charges. No nothing. The government does not need you to provide your personal information in order to receive your payment. They will deposit money into the account you gave on your tax return last year or send you a check. Anyone asking for your Social Security number, bank account, or credit card number is a scammer. The checks are not in the mail … yet. Anyone who tells you they can expedite your check for a fee is a scammer. Never give your bank account information to someone you don’t know. Scammers will call and pressure you to divulge your bank account information so they can steal the money in the account. Look-alikes and sound-alikes aren’t the real thing. Just because the a caller claims to be with the government doesn’t mean he is. Scammers make up official-sounding names to fool you. Phone numbers can deceive. Con artists “spoof” their phone numbers to change what you see in caller ID. They could be calling from anywhere. If you spot a scam, please report it to the Better Business Bureau at bbb.org/scamtracker. HIV drug showing signs of successfully treating coronavirus patients Update 1:44 a.m. EDT April 5: A drug used to treat HIV and cancer patients has shown success in treating some of the most severe coronavirus patients and was just cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to start a phase two clinical trial. Much of the work behind the drug is happening in Washington state. The drug was developed by a company called CytoDyn in Vancouver, Washington. It is manufactured by a company in Bothell, Washington, AGC Biologics, which makes a special molecule that is the key ingredient in the drug, KIRO-TV reported. Scientists at CytoDyn figured out it could work to treat COVID-19, and the first severely sick patients who’ve tried it have shown improvement. The drug is called leronlimab, comes in a vial and is a two-shot-per-week dose over two weeks. It is being tried on 10 of the most critically ill COVID-19 patients at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, the University Hospital for Albert Einstein College of Medicine. The patients are on ventilators, and some are barely conscious. “The first four patients who were intubated, two were extubated. One of them self-extubated and became alert,” said Nader Pourhassan, the CEO of CytoDyn. Now the two patients are out of the intensive care unit. Pourhassan said when he heard the results, he had to stop what he was doing. “And cried for about five minutes. It was very, very emotional,” Pourhassan said. He said studies show that in the U.S., 85% of COVID-19 patients who end up needing ventilators will die. But the patients who’ve gotten shots of this drug have shown strong results. “All eight patients we’ve analyzed so far – the first eight patients – saw immunological benefits. The FDA immediately allowed us to have a phase two randomized trial. We are initiating that today,” Pourhassan said Friday. He said the results were even seen in COVID patients who only got the shots three days, though it takes two weeks for the drugs to take full effect. Read more here. U.S. cases soar past 312,000, including nearly 8,500 deaths Update 12:53 a.m. EDT April 5: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States soared past 312,000 across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands early Sunday. According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 312,146 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 8,496 deaths. Worldwide, there are 1,203,099 confirmed cases and 64,774 deaths from the virus. U.S. cases outnumber those in any other nation, including the 126,168 reported in Spain and the 124,632 confirmed in Italy. Of the confirmed deaths in the U.S., 3,565 have occurred in New York, 846 in New Jersey, 540 in Michigan and 409 in Louisiana. In terms of diagnosed cases, New York remains the hardest-hit with at least 114,174 confirmed cases, followed by New Jersey with 34,124, Michigan with 14,225 and California with 13,878. Five other states have each confirmed at least 10,000 novel coronavirus cases, including: • Louisiana: 12,496, including 409 deaths • Massachusetts: 11,736, including 216 deaths • Florida: 11,545, including 195 deaths • Pennsylvania: 10,444, including 139 deaths • Illinois: 10,359, including 244 deaths Meanwhile, Washington state has confirmed at least 7,500 novel coronavirus infections, while Texas and Georgia have confirmed at least 6,000 cases each. – The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • The NBA and two professional basketball teams are working with a Chinese official to provide 1 million surgical masks to 'essential workers' in New York. According to Reuters, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the donation – a collaborative effort involving the league, the New York Knicks, the Brooklyn Nets and Chinese Consul General Huang Ping – Saturday on social media. 'New York thanks you,' Cuomo tweeted Saturday afternoon. 'We are beyond grateful for this gift of critically needed PPE.' >> See the tweet here As of Sunday morning, New York had reported at least 114,174 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 3,565 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. Read more here.
  • Media mogul Oprah Winfrey is donating $10 million amid the coronavirus pandemic, she said last week. In an Instagram post Thursday, Winfrey praised America's Food Fund, a donation drive started by actor Leonardo DiCaprio, Laurene Powell Jobs, Apple and the Ford Foundation. According to the initiative's GoFundMe page, it is currently benefiting two food charities: Feeding America and World Central Kitchen, founded by celebrity chef José Andrés. 'I was struck by the work these organizations are doing, and while everyone’s priority right now is to stay safer at home, I know there are many of us looking for ways to help,' Winfrey wrote. 'I believe that America’s Food Fund will be a powerful way to make a difference for our neighbors in need and am committing $1 million to this fund to support those facing food insecurity.'  She added that she is 'donating $10 million overall to help Americans during this pandemic in cities across the country and in areas where I grew up.' >> See the post here As of Sunday morning, America's Food Fund's crowdfunding campaign had raised more than $13 million toward its $15 million goal.  Read more here or here.
  • A Duxbury, Massachusetts, man could face criminal charges for allegedly spitting and coughing onto produce at a Stop and Shop in Kingston. Police are still investigating what happened after bystanders tackled that customer for causing this disturbance. “It’s terrifying and no one should ever do that, even if it is a joke,” said Kyle Mann, who was shopping at that Stop and Shop on Saturday. There, in Kingston, was where Mann saw a customer starting to get violent. He recorded video as bystanders tackled and pinned that man down until police arrived. Witnesses told police that man had coughed and spit on some produce. “Especially with the CDC now recommending everyone wear face masks, someone doing this makes people more uncomfortable for people to leave their house to get necessary items,” Mann said. “And it’s honestly disgraceful.” At this point, Kingston police say they have no reason to believe that individual has COVID-19, but he was taken to a hospital in Plymouth out of an abundance of caution. Police also say the individual is no longer allowed inside that Stop and Shop. “I had a mask on and I had gloves on and I was a pretty good distance away, so I was not really concerned about my health,” Mann said. “But I was concerned about the employees and the customers that were near him.” A Stop and Shop spokesperson told Boston's WFXT that the safety and wellbeing of their customers and associates is a top priority. The spokesperson released the following statement: 'The customer’s actions were not in accordance with CDC guidelines, which we have been consistently encouraging all shoppers and associates to follow to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. We have discarded potentially affected product and conducted a deep cleaning and sanitizing of all impacted areas. The Board of Health has inspected the store and affirmed the store is safe for shoppers.' “I think it’s horrible,” Mann said of the incident. “Especially with a possibility of food scarcity because there’s so many people buying all the food. So you just waste all this food.” Mann says he’s glad both police and the store employees took the incident very seriously, especially at a time like this.
  • A wildfire Friday damaged more than 100 cars parked at a Florida airport. The fire engulfed an overflow parking lot used for rental cars at Southwest International Airport near Fort Myers, the Naples News-Press reported. The cause of the fire is unknown.
  • More than 1.15 million people worldwide -- including more than 290,000 people in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. as hospitals brace for unprecedented patient surges. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here. Live updates for Saturday, April 4, continue below:  2 Illinois Walmart employees die days apart Update 10:44 p.m. EDT April 4: Two employees at an Illinois Walmart died from the coronavirus days apart from each other. The employees had not been working at the store in more than a week, the company said Friday, WGN reported. Their identities were not released. The store is open. Officials said it has been sanitized and cleaned. It is unclear if other employees at the store have tested positive for the virus. There are more than 10,300 confirmed cases and 248 deaths in Illinois, The New York Times reported. 1,224 people die in US, most in single day Update 9:49 p.m. EDT April 4: Health officials reported 1,224 deaths in the U.S. Saturday, the most in a single day since the coronavirus pandemic began. The previous day with the most deaths was Friday with 1,094, CNN reported. There are more than 305,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 8,300 deaths in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins virus tracking site. Wyoming is the only state that has not yet reported a death. Nearly 10,000 NYPD, FDNY first responders out sick Update 8:11 p.m. EDT April 4: Amid increased calls because of the coronavirus, about 1 in 4 Fire Department of New York emergency responding personnel called out sick Friday, the department said. More than 3,000 emergency medical technicians, paramedics and firefighters called out, WNBC reported. The FDNY responded to more than 6,500 calls Monday, a spike of more than 500 calls from the day before, WNBC reported. Officials said they normally get about 4,000 calls a day.More than 400 members of the FDNY have tested positive for the coronavirus. Other first responders are feeling the effects of the virus too. One in 6 members of the New York Police Department are out sick or in quarantine, according to The New York Times. On Thursday, 6,498 members of the force called in sick reporting flu-like symptoms.There are more than 113,000 confirmed cases of the virus in New York state and more than 3,500 deaths. Queen Elizabeth to address coronavirus in rare television appearance  Update 7:15 p.m. EDT April 4: Queen Elizabeth II is expected to address the coronavirus pandemic in a rare television appearance Sunday. She recorded the speech Friday, CNN reported. It will be broadcast at 8 p.m. local time. “I am speaking to you at what I know is an increasingly challenging time. A time of disruption in the life of our country: a disruption that has brought grief to some, financial difficulties to many, and enormous changes to the daily lives of us all,” the Queen is expected to say Sunday, CNN reported. It is the fourth time the Queen has made a special address, NBC News reported. The last time was in 2002 following the death of the Queen Mother. She also spoke on television in 1997 ahead of Princess Diana’s funeral and in 1991 regarding the first Gulf War. There are more than 42,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and more than 4,300 deaths in the United Kingdom, according to Johns Hopkins virus tracking information. US cases top 300,000 as death toll passes 8,000 Update 4:56 p.m. EDT April 4: More than 300,000 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in the U.S. as deaths surpassed 8,000 on Saturday afternoon, The New York Times reported. Health officials believe the number of infected is much higher. President Donald Trump said at the Saturday coronavirus task force news conference that “there will be a lot of death” in the coming week, CNN reported. There are more than 113,000 coronavirus cases and 3,500 deaths in New York state. Worldwide, more than 1.1 million people have tested positive for the coronavirus and 59,000 people have died. CDC to begin testing for antibodies Update 3:08 p.m. EDT April 4: Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said they have begun testing to learn whether people have been previously infected with the coronavirus, The New York Times reported. The serology tests detect antibodies that the immune system makes in response to the virus, the newspaper reported. Joe Bresee, deputy incident manager of the agency’s COVID-19 response, said testing will focus on people in areas with a high concentration of cases; people in a representative sample of other areas and special groups of people who are likely to have had a higher risk of being exposed to the virus, the Times reported. The CDC also announced it expanded its online information about the coronavirus, adding a weekly report that will include figures on outpatient and emergency department visits, hospitalizations, deaths and data on testing, according to the Times. Astros pitcher Justin Verlander donating paychecks Update 2:11 p.m. EDT April 4: Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander posted a video, including his wife, Kate Upton, on his Instagram page and said he will donate his major league baseball paychecks to different organizations. “Everyone around the world is affected by this virus, and we hope to contribute to the families and jobs affected, the healthcare workers and first responders on the front lines and the many others in need of basic necessities, medical supplies and support at home.” Verlander said in the video. New York death toll tops 3,500 Update 1:44 p.m. EDT April 4:  The death toll in       New York state jumped to 3,565 on Saturday, an increase of 630 from Friday,       The New York Times reported. Confirmed cases in New York now stand at 113,704, according to       The Washington Post . There are now 290,606 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States and more than 7,700 fatalities.      “By the numbers, we’re not yet at the apex. We’re getting closer,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference. “I want to get to the other side of the apex, and let’s just slide down that mountain.” Shoe designer Sergio Rossi dies from COVID-19 complications Update 1:31 p.m. EDT April 4:  Legendary women’s shoe designer Sergio Rossi died of complications from coronavirus in northern       Italy , hospital officials confirmed. He was 84. An official at the Maurizio Bufalini Hospital in Cesena, confirmed Rossi’s death to       CNN but did not provide any other information, including when the designer died.      “Today everyone at Sergio Rossi joins me in remembering our dear Sergio, the inspiring founder of our dream,” Riccardo Sciutto. Sergio Rossi CEO, told       Vogue . “Sergio Rossi was a master. His vision and approach will remain our guide in the growth of the brand and the business. He loved women and was able to capture a woman’s femininity in a unique way, creating the perfect extension of a woman’s leg through his shoes. '      Cuomo says China donating 1,000 ventilators to New York Update 11:29 a.m. EDT April 4:  Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference Saturday that New York will receive 1,140 ventilators from China and Oregon. Cuomo said 1,000 ventilators from China were expected to arrive sometime Saturday at John F. Kennedy International Airport.      “This is a big deal and it’s going to make a significant difference for us. Also, the state of Oregon contacted us and is going to send 140 ventilators,” Cuomo said at the news conference. “Which is I can tell you just astonishing and unexpected. And I want to thank Gov. (Kate) Brown, I want to thank all of the people in the state of Oregon for their thoughtfulness.” Cuomo says China donating 1,000 ventilators to New York Coral Princess ship docks in Miami with 2 dead, captain says Update 10:56 a.m. EDT April 4:  Two people aboard the Coral Princess cruise ship, which reported 12 positive cases of the coronavirus Thursday, docked in Miami early Saturday and reported that two people died overnight, the       Miami Herald  reported. The ship’s captain announced the deaths,       The Washington Post  reported.      The captain did not say whether the two passengers who died were among the confirmed COVID-19 cases but said they were being treated in the ship’s medical center when they passed away, the       Post reported, citing a recording of the captain’s announcement.      The announcement was confirmed by Shannon Kilbane, a passenger from California, the       Herald reported..“I know how difficult this news is to bear, but given the current situation, we remain committed to transparent and consistent communication with you,” the captain said in the announcement, according to the       Post.  “This information will need to be shared with shoreside authorities and will become public, so I wanted you to hear it from me first.”           Global death toll tops 60,000 Update 9:52 a.m. EDT April 4:  The worldwide death toll for the coronavirus moved past 60,000 Saturday morning and has infected more than 1.13 million people according to       Johns Hopkins University . The United States has more than 270,400 cases and more than 7,100 deaths.                                                                                Texas records 100th death Update 9:46 a.m. EDT April 4:  The death toll in Texas from the coronavirus has reached 100 people, the       Houston Chronicle reported. The state has more than 6,050 confirmed COVDI-19 cases, the newspaper reported. As of Friday, Houston had 506 cases and eight deaths, while unincorporated Harris County had 519 cases and five deaths, according to the       Chronicle. 600 French soldiers test positive Update 9:29 a.m. EDT April 4:  Approximately 600 members of the French military have tested positive for the coronavirus,       The Washington Post reported Saturday.      In an       interview , France’s Defense Minister Florence Parly told the Le Dauphiné libéré newspaper that the ministry was monitoring the situation “very closely.” Parly said the ability of the army to carry out missions was “not impacted,' the       Post reported.      AutoNation furloughs 7,000 employees, cuts executives’ pay Update 9:02 a.m. EDT April 4:  AutoNation announced in filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it is furloughing 7,000 employees, cutting the pay of its top executives and imposing a hiring freeze as the auto dealer giant is feeling the economic pinch caused by the coronavirus. The report, filed Thursday, noted that AutoNation cut advertising spending by nearly 50% for the second quarter of 2020. The company also reduced discretionary spending and postponed more than $50 million in capital spending during the second quarter, scoring to the filing.      'The COVID-19 pandemic has adversely impacted, and is expected to continue to  adversely impact, AutoNation’s operations,” the company said in the filing. France becomes 5th nation to surpass China’s total coronavirus count  Update 7:43 a.m. EDT April 4 : The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus hit 59,884 early Saturday, and the latest surge in cases in France pushed the European nation’s total past that of China, where the illness was first detected in December.       In the four months since the virus was first identified in       Wuhan, China , it has infected at least 1,131,713 people worldwide,       according to a tally maintained by Johns Hopkins University . Five countries – the       United States, Spain, Italy, Germany and       France – have now confirmed total infection counts well above China’s 82,526 cases.       • The       United States has reported 278,458 cases, resulting in 7,159 deaths.       •       Spain has confirmed 124,736 cases, resulting in 11,744 deaths.       •       Italy has reported 119,827 infections, resulting in 14,681 deaths.       •       Germany has reported 91,159 cases, resulting in 1,275 deaths.       •       France has confirmed 83,029 infections, resulting in 6,520 deaths.       •       China has recorded 82,543 cases, resulting in 3,330 deaths.       •       Iran has recorded 55,743 cases, resulting in 3,452 deaths.       • The       United Kingdom has reported 38,697 cases, resulting in 3,611 deaths.       •       Turkey has recorded 20,921 cases, resulting in 425 deaths.       •       Switzerland has confirmed 19,702 cases, resulting in 60 deaths.      New York’s first responders union chief calls coronavirus efforts ‘battlefield triage’ Update 5:17 a.m. EDT April 4 : An emergency personnel official minced no words when describing the scale and gravity of the toll the novel coronavirus crisis is taking on the city’s first responders and medical personnel.      'We’re in wartime mode,” Michael Greco, vice president of the New York City Fire Department Bureau of Emergency Medical Services union, told       CNN .      'If we don’t get a return of circulation, after 20 minutes we are terminating the CPR, and we are not transporting,” Greco       told the network .      To date, the state of New York has confirmed 103,060 infections – resulting in 2,935 deaths – or nearly one-third of the total 278,458 U.S. cases.       According to a Johns Hopkins University tally , 1,867 of the state’s deaths have occurred within New York City.      Prior to the novel coronavirus pandemic, Greco said he and his fellow paramedics typically witnessed one or two cardiac arrests per week. One New York crew handled seven cardiac arrests on Thursday, alone, Greco told       CNN .      “As an EMT (emergency medical technician) or a paramedic, doctors too, and nurses, we all swore oaths to do everything we can to save a life and now we’re making decisions that we were never trained for to handle mentally,” he       told the network .      US Attorney General Barr orders release of vulnerable federal inmates to limit coronavirus spread Update 2:33 a.m. EDT April 4 : U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr ordered the release late Friday night of vulnerable inmates to home confinement in a bid to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus in federal prisons.      In a memorandum,      obtained by The Washington Post , requested the Federal Bureau of Prisons move elderly inmates and those with preexisting health conditions from Danbury, Connecticut; Oakdale, Louisiana; and Elkton, Ohio.     According to the      Post , prison officials have attributed five deaths at Oakdale and two at Elkton to the coronavirus. Meanwhile, Danbury has confirmed nine COVID-19 infections but no deaths.     “I believe strongly we should do everything we can to protect the inmates in our care, but we must do so in a careful and individualized way that remains faithful to our duty to protect the public and the law enforcement officers who protect us all,”      Barr wrote .     White House attorney tapped to oversee coronavirus business loans Update 2:10 a.m. EDT April 4 : President Donald Trump nominated a White House attorney late Friday night to oversee distribution of emergency business loans aimed at minimizing the impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic.     According to      The Wall Street Journal , Trump nominated Brian D. Miller as special inspector general for pandemic recovery, giving him oversight of a $500 billion emergency relief fund.     Read more      here .     SCOTUS cancels April arguments amid coronavirus threat Update 1:55 a.m. EDT April 4 : The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday officially canceled its scheduled oral arguments for April, citing health risks associated with the novel coronavirus pandemic.     According to      The Washington Post , about 20 cases are already stalled following the postponement of March arguments, and the justices offered little clarity regarding a timeline for finishing the current term.     “The court will consider rescheduling some cases from the March and April sessions before the end of the term, if circumstances permit in light of public health and safety guidance at that time,” Public Information Officer Kathleen Arberg said in a news release. US coronavirus deaths hit 7,157, total cases near 278K Posted 12:55 a.m. EDT April 4 : The number of novel coronavirus cases in the      United States approached 278,000 early Saturday morning across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.     According to      researchers at Johns Hopkins University , there are at least 277,965 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 7,157 deaths. U.S. cases now more than double the 119,827 reported in      Italy and the 119,199 confirmed in      Spain .     Of the confirmed U.S. deaths, 2,935 – or roughly 40 percent of the nationwide total – have occurred in      New York , 646 in      New Jersey and 479 in      Michigan .      In terms of diagnosed cases,      New York remains the hardest hit with at least 103,060 confirmed cases – more than three times the next-closest state – followed by      New Jersey with 29,895 and      Michigan with 12,744.     Six other states have now confirmed at least 8,000 novel coronavirus cases each, including: •      California : 12,399, including 270 deaths     •      Massachusetts : 10,402, including 192 deaths     •      Louisiana : 10,297, including 370 deaths     •      Florida : 10,268, including 170 deaths     •      Illinois : 8,904, including 210 deaths     •      Pennsylvania : 8,570, including 102 deaths     Meanwhile,      Washington state,      Texas and      Georgia each has confirmed at least 6,000 novel coronavirus infections;      Connecticut, Colorado, Indiana, Ohio and      Tennessee each has confirmed at least 3,000 cases; and      Maryland, North Carolina, Missouri, Virginia and      Wisconsin each has confirmed at least 2,000 cases.     Click      here to see CNN’s state-by-state breakdown .