While You Were Sleeping: Coronavirus updates for October 5

Coronavirus

INDIANAPOLIS — There were several developments in the coronavirus pandemic that you may have missed overnight.

Here’s a look:

President Trump update. President Donald Trump spent Sunday at Walter Reed Medical Center to continue treatment for COVID-19. The president’s medical team says he is doing well, but some questions still remain.

In a video he posted to Twitter, President Trump said, “I came here, wasn’t feeling so well. I feel much better now.”

On Sunday, Trump spent his second full day at Walter Reed as he battles the virus.

“The president has continued to improve. As with any illness, there are frequent ups and downs over the course,” said White House physician Dr. Sean Conley.

Late Sunday morning, Conley said the president was being treated with Remdesivir and a steroid called Dexamathosone that’s shown promising results. The president’s medical team acknowledges he is not out of the woods yet, but they are hopeful.

“Our hope is that we can plan for a discharge as early as tomorrow (Monday), to the White House where he can continue his treatment course,” said Dr. Brian Garibaldi of Johns Hopkins Hospital.

In addition to the president’s video, the White House released photos of the president reviewing documents from Walter Reed. Conley said President Trump’s fever is gone and he’s in good spirits, but confirmed the president did need supplemental oxygen on Friday, and possibly a second dose on Saturday.

IPS students go back to class. Students in kindergarten through third grade return to in-person classes Monday as Indianapolis Public Schools begin its phased-in plan. The pandemic forced the district to find ways to make riding the bus safer.

“We have that expectation that they arrive at the bus stop with masks, but we’ll have additional masks on the bus for any student that forgets that,” said Zachary Mulholland, executive director of operations.

Mulholland said all the bus windows and roof hatches will stay open to help with cross ventilation, weather permitting. The buses will be cleaned daily and between each route.

Students will enter the bus rear to front in the mornings and front to rear in the afternoons. Each rider will have an assigned seat. The district has a goal of one rider per seat, except for members of the same household.

To ensure the rules are followed, the school system is adding a bus monitor to each bus.

“That will help us manage seating charts, help us board and disembark students on and off the bus,” Mulholland said.

To keep children safe, the district asked families for help to decrease ridership on buses. In September, they asked families to fill out a survey to gauge whether students could find alternative transportation – walking, riding bikes or riding in a vehicle.

The district also identified 13 schools where children lived close enough to walk. So, the district added more crossing guards to those areas.

IPS is offering a virtual meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 6, to give parents a chance to ask questions to the district’s transportation team. Parents can register here.

Cinema shutdown? Cinema chain Cineworld said Sunday it is considering closing all its movie theaters in Britain and the United States, after the postponement of the new James Bond film left a big hole in schedules.

Cineworld Group PLC owns 543 Regal cinemas in the U.S. and 128 Cineworld venues in the U.K. and Ireland.

It said it was “considering the temporary closure of our U.K. and U.S. cinemas, but a final decision has not yet been reached.”

“Once a decision has been made we will update all staff and customers as soon as we can.”

The statement came after the Sunday Times reported that Cineworld’s U.K. and Ireland theaters will shut indefinitely in the coming weeks, putting up to 5,500 people out of work.

The newspaper and other outlets reported that Cineworld plans to write to U.K. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden saying cinema has become “unviable” because studios are postponing blockbuster releases because of the coronavirus pandemic.

India cases top 6.6 million. India has registered a single-day spike of 74,442 new coronavirus cases, driving the country’s overall tally since the pandemic began to 6.6 million.

The Health Ministry on Monday also reported another 903 virus deaths in the past 24 hours, taking total fatalities up to 102,685.

India has reported the second most infections globally after the United States, but its daily new infections are now on a downward trend, though still the highest in the world. The number of active virus cases in the country has also remained below 1 million for the past two weeks.

The country’s recovery rate stands at 84%, the highest in the world, with more than 5.5 million people recovered from coronavirus so far, according to the Health Ministry.

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