‘SNL’s Chris Redd Organizes Fundraiser To Provide COVID-19 Tests & Treatment For George Floyd Protesters

Saturday Night Live cast member Chris Redd has launched a fundraiser to provide COVID-19 testing and treatment for those participating in protests over the death of George Floyd.

Redd announced the GoFundMe campaign on Twitter.

“COVID19 protest relief is live!! Give if you can, share if it’s in your heart!! #BlackLivesMatter and more to come!!,” Redd tweeted.

“As thousands of people take to the streets to protest racial discrimination and the many Black Lives lost at the hands of injustice, we also have the unfortunate fact that this deadly pandemic is still upon us,” Redd wrote in the GoFundMe campaign description.

“The lives at risk of the injustice being fought against are also the most vulnerable to COVID-19. Many will not be in position to pay the inevitable cost associated with their brave efforts,” he added. “This fund is to assist those that contract this disease while protesting and other protest related injuries as many are being attacked while speaking out.”

The fund also will provide support for treatment/hospital bills as related to COVID-19, injuries obtained while protesting, bail relief and court expenses for protesters.

The fund so far has raised $125,240 of its $250,000 goal.

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‘Mission: Impossible 7′ to Begin Production Again in September After COVID-19 Shutdown

It looks like Mission: Impossible 7 is eyeing a September restart after production on the film was shut down earlier this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

One of the stars of the film, Simon Pegg, spoke to Variety and confirmed September is “the plan.”

“That will begin with the outdoor stuff,” he said, “That feels fairly doable, and obviously there will be precautions put in place.”

“People that are involved in any close proximity stuff, it will have to be determined that they’re safe to do that. I don’t know what the testing situation is, how that works, or whether they’ll be able to be tested regularly,” Simon added about shooting a major action film amid this virus.

There was a major casting change with regard to the new Tom Cruise movie. See who got replaced.

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Is coronavirus becoming less potent? Doctors believe it is weakening

Italian doctors claim coronavirus has ‘enormously weakened’ compared to when it ripped across the globe earlier this year.

Head of Milan’s San Raffaele Hospital Dr Alberto Zangrillo says the disease is now much less lethal and ‘no longer clinically exists’ in Italy. The physician of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said newly infected patients are showing milder symptoms and that the number of viruses in their system decreased significantly between March and May.

Scientific theory suggests viruses may become weaker in order to survive, as killing or incapacitating too many human hosts will limit their capacity to spread. But not everyone in the scientific community is buying these latest claims.

The president of the government’s scientific advisory body said he was ‘baffled’ by Dr Zangrillo’s remarks, while an epidemiologist at Stanford University called the report ‘bulls**t’.

Viruses like HIV and the common cold have mutated in the same way the research claims. But critics point out these diseases have done so over the course of many years, but coronavirus has only been recorded in humans since December last year.

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Other scientists have said there is not enough evidence to conclude Covid-19 has adapted in this way. The San Raffaele study was based on the swab samples of 200 patients taken over the past 10 days, compared to ones carried out a month ago.

Director of San Raffaele’s Microbiology and Virology Laboratory Massimo Clementi said the viral loads present in these samples showed the virus had ‘enormously weakened’.

Head of the infectious diseases clinic at Genoa’s San Martino hospital Matteo Bassetti backed these claims. He said: ‘The strength the virus had two months ago is not the same strength it has today’.

Dr Zangrillo made his controversial claims on the RAI TV channel. Urging politicians to lift emergency measures faster, he said: ‘In reality, the virus clinically no longer exists in Italy. We’ve got to get back to being a normal country. Someone has to take responsibility for terrorising the country.’

‘I say this well aware of the tragedy for those patients who didn’t make it, but we cannot continue to give all the attention to self-proclaimed professors rather than actual virologists and hospital workers.

‘In a clinical sense, the virus no longer exists. I am prepared to put my name to that statement. We’ve got to get back to being a normal country because the statistics show we have every capability of doing that.’

Italy has suffered the third highest official death toll in the world, with 33,475 lives lost. There have been 233,197 confirmed cases and there are 6,387 patients in hospital, 435 in intensive care and 32,253 self-isolating at home with symptoms.

Dr Zangrillo said previous epidemics including SARS and MERS ‘petered out by themselves’. He added: ‘We’ve got to be wary, yes, but not kill ourselves unnecessarily. Our wards are emptying out,’

President of the National Health Council which advises the government Franco Locatelli said he could only express his ‘great surprise and bafflement’ at the remarks.

He added: ‘You just need to look at the number of new positive cases confirmed every day to see the persistent circulation of the virus in Italy.’

Columbia University’s Dr Angela Rasmussen said there is ‘no evidence that the virus is losing potency anywhere’. She said fewer cases, hospitalisations and deaths doesn’t mean the virus itself is any weaker then before.

Stanford University based epidemiologist Dr Seema Yasmin called for the report to be deleted, branding it ‘bulls**t’.

Professor Francois Balloux from University College London said: ‘There is no evidence for the SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) having become more or less virulent/transmissible.

‘The outbreak in Italy has been waning over recent weeks despite relaxation of the social distancing measures previously in place. This is line with what has been observed in most European countries.

‘The extent to which this is only due to residual social distancing measures in place, or whether seasonality or some other factors are playing a role remains debated. That said, we should definitely not rule out a second epidemic wave later this year.

‘The lockdowns were necessary to avoid hospital being overrun. Social distancing measures are being progressively relaxed in countries where the outbreak is under control. I do not believe these comments are helpful or reflect the current scientific evidence.

‘Viral load of swab tests will vary over the course of an infection. When compared on the same day post-infection, viral load can correlate with symptom severity.

‘Transmission outdoors is likely to be characterised by lower infectious dose and less severe symptoms, than transmission indoors.

‘There is no evidence the virus has lost ‘strength’ at this stage. We cannot rule out that some lineages will eventually evolve towards to lower symptom severity but this cannot be taken for granted.’

MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research’s Dr Oscar MacLean said: ‘These claims are not supported by anything in the scientific literature, and also seem fairly implausible on genetic grounds.

‘The vast majority of SARS-CoV-2 mutations are extremely rare, and so whilst some infections may be attenuated by certain mutations, they are highly unlikely to be common enough to alter the nature of the virus at a national or global level.

‘We know that susceptibility to the virus significantly differs across age and risk groups, and so infection outcomes will also drastically differ across individuals.

‘As testing efforts are scaled up across the globe, asymptomatic and mild infections which previously would not have been detected, are now much more likely to be identified. It’s important not to confuse this with any weakening on the virus’s part.

‘Making these claims on the basis of anecdotal observations from swab tests is dangerous. Whilst weakening of the virus through mutations is theoretically possible, it is not something we should expect, and any claims of this nature would need to be verified in a more systematic way.

‘Without significantly stronger evidence, no one should unnecessarily downplay the danger this highly virulent virus poses, and risk the ongoing society-wide response.’

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To avoid coronavirus is it safer to eat outside at restaurants?

NYC restaurants get creative with ‘the new normal’

Fox News’ Alex Hogan discusses how some New York City restaurants are selling groceries and using outside pop-up tables to keep their businesses running during the coronavirus pandemic.

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The experience of eating at a restaurant won’t be the same anytime soon thanks to the new normal of the coronavirus.

But as more restaurants reopen dining rooms with social distancing measures in place, health experts say the risk of exposure to COVID-19 is still there. However, outdoor dining from a distance may be a safer alternative.

Delaney Thayer wears a face mask as she serves diners Jennifer Allen, left, and Julie Steacy at Centro Cocina Mexicana restaurant in Sacramento, Calif., Friday, as part of Sacramento County’s extended Stage 2 reopening plan. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncell

"Outside is better than inside, you get a little more oxygenation," Dr. Dean Hart, a New York-based microbiologist, tells FOX Business. "The virus is delicate, it'll live better inside, but if someone is sick or asymptomatic there's still a risk of being exposed to germs in the air or outside if, say, the wind blows even if someone is seated six feet apart."

The Food and Drug Administration has not found the coronavirus to be spread through food packaging or through food, however, Hart stresses the importance of not sharing food, drinks, utensils or communal table items like menus and washing hands before and after meals.

"This is not a foodborne illness [to worry about at restaurants], this is a social distancing issue," he said. "Keep the same sort of concerns that you would in any other social setting whether it be shopping at the grocery store or while eating outside at a restaurant. Be aware of the high-touch points and be cognizant if the facility has someone who is sanitizing."

Restaurants in harder-hit COVID-19 regions such as New York, New Jersey, Maryland and Connecticut have started to allow eaters to dine outside at restaurants. Here's how to do so safely.

Be diligent when dining out 

While restaurants are mandated to follow health and safety guidelines for state and local authorities, it doesn’t hurt to do your own analysis if there’s a local restaurant you know and trust and want to consider dining out.

D.C BARS, RESTAURANTS URGE DISTRICT TO EXPAND OUTDOOR FOOD AND DRINK SALES

Be sure staffers are upholding CDC guidelines for health and safety. Are servers wearing masks? Are tables free of shared items like salt and pepper shakers?  Are there paper menus and tables separated at least 6 feet apart? All of these measures are things to consider.

RESTAURANTS PLAN FOR OUTDOOR DINING FOLLOWING CORONAVIRUS

Todd Frantz, a food safety manager for UL, a global safety company, notes that many restaurants have already retrofitted restaurants with sanitation stations and dividers to separate diners.

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"Restaurants have always had to follow health and safety guidelines, but now sanitizer is being made available for guests, plexiglass dividers are being installed between booths and eating spaces, there are certain things that the restaurant industry is going to be able to roll with pretty easily. There's a pretty good safety net in place if they're all being followed," Frantz explained.

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Burger King Introduces Hilarious Six-Foot Long Crown & New Burger To Encourage Social Distancing

Burger King is doing its part in encouraging diners to practice social distancing!

In Germany, the fast-food chain introduced a creative new way to get customers to stay six feet apart from each other as franchises in the country begin to reopen dine-in services amid the coronavirus pandemic. New oversized headgear extends far enough all around the wearer’s head to ensure they remain distanced and can eat their meal in peace.

Ch-ch-check out a pic of two models digging in (below):

The Instagram caption translates to, “distancing, but make it fashion.” That’s one way to put it!!

A Burger King spokesperson told Business Insider:

“We wanted to reinforce the rules of high safety and hygiene standards that the BK restaurants are following. The do-it-yourself social distance crown was a fun and playful way to remind our guests to practice social distancing while they are enjoying food in the restaurants.”

And over in Italy, the fast-food giant is also debuting something fresh. Italians can enjoy a “Social Distancing Whopper,” which features triple the amount of raw onions usually found on a classic Whopper, created in an effort to keep others outside your bubble thanks to onion-induced bad breath.

A commercial promoting the burger shared:

“The triple onion Whopper that helps others stay away.”

While these haven’t made their way to the United States yet, we can dream!!

Instead, it seems BK’s US social media accounts have found themselves in some hot water after engaging with a Taylor Swift fan. On Tuesday, the Swiftie asked on Twitter:

“@BurgerKing i need to know… what’s yalls favorite taylor swift song?”

And BK came back swinging! They replied (below) on Wednesday:

“the one about her ex”

However, many fans from both sides of the “argument” didn’t take the situation lightly, asking that Swifties focus their attention on more pressing matters:

“swifties i promise you taylor swift does not give a f**k about burger king and neither should you. direct your attention to the racism going on in our world instead.”

“Yall really trying to get @BurgerKing CANCELED? We got more important s**t to focus on then a joke taken poorly by some Taylor swift fans. F**k outta here”

“F**k Burger King and Taylor Swift, I don’t wanna hear anything about them unless they’re donating to Civil Rights organizations or standing up to the corrupt justice system. People getting killed out here and y’all talking about #BurgerKingIsOverParty”

We can almost promise you that Tay would agree.

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Walt Disney World Preps July Reopening

Despite having more than 52,255 coronavirus cases in the state of Florida, Walt Disney World plans to reopen in July.

Florida’s Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom will reopen to limited capacity on July 11th, while Epcot and Hollywood Studios (previously known as MGM Studios) will reopen on July 15th. Walt Disney World presented a proposal to the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force on Tuesday. SeaWorld also plans to reopen to the public on June 11th.

According to Disney World senior vice president of operations Jim McPhee, reopening to the public means taking necessary precautions. All visitors will be given temperature checks and face coverings upon arrival, while hand-washing and sanitizing stations and social-distancing will be practiced throughout the parks.

Contactless payments and mobile orders will also be made at the parks’ restaurants and stores. Sadly, meet-and-greets with Disney characters will be suspended until further notice, as well as parades and other events.

Walt Disney World closed in early March amid the pandemic, its first time shutting down since the September 11th attacks in 2001.

The Florida Department of Health releases daily reports on COVID-19 cases. According to Tuesday’s report, there have been a total of 2,259 deaths related to coronavirus in the state. Florida recently partnered with private laboratories to ensure more testing around the panhandle.

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UK coronavirus death toll hits 37,231 after 183 more die in England – The Sun

THE UK coronavirus death toll has risen to at least 37,231 after 183 fatalities were recorded in hospitals across England in the last 24 hours.

Today's rise, recorded by NHS England, is larger than any daily jump recorded in England since last Thursday, when 187 deaths were logged.

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It brings the total number of coronavirus deaths in English hospitals to 26,049.

Patients were aged between 43 and 101 years old – and all but two of them had underlying health conditions.

Today's spike in England is bigger than every daily rise recorded this week so far across the whole of the UK.

It is trumped only by figures recorded by the Department of Health on Sunday – which saw 187 more fatalities reported across Britain.

This is likely to be due to a lag in reporting over the long weekend – figures tend to be lower on Monday before catching up again on Tuesday.

In this case, the figures are likely to be catching up today, following low numbers on Tuesday.

Although today's rise in England is greater than the rise recorded last Wednesday (166), it is significantly smaller than every daily rise recorded on a Wednesday throughout April and the rest of May.

In Scotland, a further 13 deaths were recorded today, bringing the coronavirus death toll in Scotland to 2,304.

In Wales, 11 deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours, bringing the total death toll there to 1,293.

It comes as

  • Local lockdowns could be thrown in place from Thursday
  • Dentists could treat patients in next three weeks
  • Ebola drug given green light to treat coronavirus
  • Bojo to announce new track and trace programme
  • The government has revealed the full list of retailers that can reopen on June 15
  • Barbecues and garden parties could be allowed by the end of June
  • Small numbers of children will head back to class when schools reopen from next week

The number comes after the Office for National Statistics yesterday revealed 47,000 people could have been killed by the deadly bug in Britain already.

The ONS figures show that 42,173 died from the virus in England and Wales up to May 15.

Combined with the latest ONS stats for Scotland and Northern Ireland, it means a total of 46,383 have died across the UK.

A further 964 hospital patients in England who had tested positive for Covid-19 died between May 16 and May 24 meaning that the overall UK death toll is just above 47,300.

The figure is 10,000 more than the official Department of Health stats.

'SIGNIFICANT PROGRESS'

Last night the Health Secretary suggested Britain has met four out of five tests for lifting the lockdown after sealing a huge PPE deal.

Speaking during the Government's daily coronavirus briefing, Matt Hancock revealed "significant progress" had been made on securing enough vital equipment to help protect those working on the front line in hospitals and care homes.

The Government did not outline specify, however, whether the new PPE supplies would cover dentists.

MPs have been pushing for dental surgeries to reopen, telling dentists to prepare to treat patients in the next three weeks.

Plans announced in Scotland stated that urgent care centres will be opened first followed by dental practices – England is set to follow these plans.

DRUG HOPE

Meanwhile the antiviral drug remdesivir – originally developed to tackle Ebola – was given the green light for the NHS today.

Mr Hancock hailed the drug the "biggest step forward" in treating coronavirus since the crisis began, after trials found it helped hospitalised patients recover almost a third faster.

The good news comes as extreme lockdown measures are expected to be lifted soon, with barbecues and garden parties for ten person 'bubbles' expected to be allowed from the end of June.

The new plans would allow different households to meet for the first time in months, although they would be capped at two households at a time.

Tough local lockdowns could, however, be thrown in place from Thursday to rapidly isolate new coronavirus sufferers.

Boris Johnson is set to announce the Government’s crucial new ‘track and trace’ programme, which will go live either on Thursday or Friday, when an army of 25,000 contact tracers will begin work hunting down new cases.

It will mean whole towns could face their own lockdowns – with schools, businesses or workplaces closed – if there are regional flare-ups.

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Researchers warn coronavirus droplets can spread up to 20ft

Current social distancing rule of 2m is ‘INSUFFICIENT’: Researchers warn coronavirus droplets can spread up to THREE TIMES further in cold and humid weather

  • Scientists said virus was most likely to spread in cold and humid conditions
  • But they said 1.4 metre rule could effectively block 95 per cent of transmission
  • Boris Johnson is preparing to allow outdoor markets to re-open next month 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

The social distancing rule of two metres (6.5ft) may have to be trebled when winter strikes, scientists have warned.  

Chinese scientists found certain weather conditions allow the disease to spread further in the air.

Their preliminary findings suggest droplets carrying the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus can travel up to 20feet (six metres) in cold and humid areas. 

However, a 1.4m range for social distancing — less than current guidelines — is sufficient to block at least 95 per cent of the virus irrespective of conditions. 

It comes as Boris Johnson prepares to allow outdoor markets to open for the first time since the UK’s lockdown, amid a continuing fall in cases and deaths.

Diagram pictured above explains how coronavirus would spread under normal conditions. Aerosols are smaller and lighter and can spread further than droplets, but droplets are believed to be more infectious (pictured)

The scientists from the universities of California Santa Barbara and Stanford created a mathematical model to predict how the virus would spread under different weather conditions.

In each case Covid-19 was launched at a speed of 4.1 m/s, the same as would be seen if it was released from the mouth as someone speaks.

They found that without stricter social distancing, Covid-19’s spread is likely to accelerate over the winter months.

‘The transmitting pathway of COVID-19 through respiratory droplets is divided into short-range droplet contacts and long-range aerosol exposure,’ the scientists write in their study. 

‘We show that the effect of weather conditions is not monotonic: low temperature and high humidity facilitate droplet contact transmission, while high temperature and low humidity promote the formation of aerosol particles and accumulation of particles with a diameter of 2.5 μm or less (PM2.5).

‘Our model suggests that the 6 ft of social distance recommended by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) may be insufficient in certain environmental conditions, as the droplet spreading distance can be as long as 6 m (19.7 ft) in cold and humid weather.’

But they also pointed out a number of limitations in the paper, which was published as a pre-print in medRxiv and has not yet been peer-reviewed. 

People pictured visiting Brighton beach during the UK’s bank holiday yesterday. Scientists warn that summer poses its own risks to public health as the summer heat, which is often dry, can cause the droplets — deemed the primary form of transmission — to evaporate and form aerosols which can spread further 

They said further data was needed to make definitive conclusions and because weather conditions do not always have the same impact on the virus.

They also called for more attention to building ventilation systems, which could unwittingly spread the virus among employees. 

The warning comes as the UK inches ever closer to ending its lockdown.

Shops are also set to soon re-open with no seating and one-way walk through systems.

Britain recorded 134 more coronavirus deaths today, as its curve continued to flatten signalling a possible end to the pandemic. 

However, the scientists warn that summer poses its own risks to public health

They write in their paper that the summer heat, which is often dry, can cause the droplets — deemed the primary form of transmission — to evaporate.

When this happens they form aerosol particles, which are lighter and capable of longer range transmission. 

These measure just 2.5 micrometres across and are so small they can infiltrate deep into the body’s respiratory system. These aerosols also have a ‘longer suspension time in hot and dry weather’, the authors say.   

METHODS TO STOP CORONAVIRUS SPREADING

Infected people can spread a contagion to others via direct or indirect exposure. 

An outbreak will continue to expand if the average number of people infected by each carrier is greater than one. 

SOCIAL DISTANCING MEASURES 

Prohibiting group gatherings, closing borders, advising people keep 1.5 metres apart, and confining people to their homes has been shown to halt the spread of coronavirus. 

In this method the public does not gain immunity in large numbers and the virus could re-surge dramatically if controls are lifted. 

HERD IMMUNITY 

People who recover from COVID-19 develop antibodies and immunity. 

As the virus spreads through the population and more people develop immunity there are less people the virus can infect. 

If enough people have immunity the outbreak will die away. 

It is estimated about 30 per cent of people who catch the virus will not show symptoms and for many more the symptoms will not be serious. 

This method produces a spike in infections which can overwhelm the healthcare system resulting in large numbers of fatalities. 

VACCINES

A COVID-19 vaccine would be the safest and most effective way of controlling the outbreak. 

There are several vaccines currently in development though they need to be tested which can take many months. 

If a vaccine is rushed without proper testing there may be side-effects and complications. 

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Beaches, Restaurants, Bars and More Venues Packed with Visitors as States Begin Reopening






On Sunday, White House advisor Dr. Deborah Birx warned Americans not to let up in social distancing practices on Sunday morning. “During this reopening, social gatherings should not be more than 10 people—even if they’re outside,” Birx said on ABC News.

As of May 24, there were more than 5.3 million coronavirus cases worldwide and 342,695 confirmed deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. alone accounts for over 1.6 million of those cases and 97,150 deaths.

On Thursday, Trump announced that the federal government would fly flags at half-mast over Memorial Day weekend in tribute to the people who have died in the U.S. from the virus.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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Coronavirus UK LIVE: Dominic Cummings told to resign for lockdown breaches by Tory MPs as death toll hits 36,675

DOMINIC CUMMINGS is facing calls to resign as the Prime Minister's senior adviser following reports he breached lockdown rules.

He allegedly travelled to his parents in Durham in late March, before being spotted out at a nearby beauty spot on April 12, when he claimed to be self-isolating with coronavirus.

Mr Cummings was later reportedly seen in Houghall Woods with his wife Mary Wakefield on April 19, despite being in Downing Street a few days earlier.

Witnesses say they were shocked when they saw the senior aide 260 miles from his London residence despite the Government message at the time being to remain at home.

Senior Tory politicians have come to his defence, but at least seven MPs from the party have so far called on the senior adviser to resign from his post.

This follows after the death toll rose by 282 to reach 36,675.

Brits have been told to not flout the current lockdown rules over the May Bank Holiday weekend or risk sending the UK back to "square one."

Health Secretary Matt Hancock told the public that any breaching of the measures could see stricter restrictions installed once again.

Follow our coronavirus live blog for all the latest news and updates…

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