INDIANAPOLIS — Monday's latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic.
1 million deaths reported worldwide
The worldwide death toll from the coronavirus has eclipsed 1 million.
The milestone, recorded by Johns Hopkins University, comes nine months into a crisis that has devastated the global economy, tested world leaders’ resolve, pitted science against politics and forced multitudes to change the way they live, learn and work.
The virus has also spread untold misery. One million is greater than the population of Jerusalem or Austin, Texas. It is more than four times the number killed in the 2004 earthquake and tsunami in the Indian Ocean. Even then, the toll is almost certainly a vast undercount because of inadequate or inconsistent testing and reporting.
(The Associated Press filed this report.)
The Indiana State Department of Health is reporting 879 new cases of coronavirus for a total of 118,322.
The state is also reporting 11 more deaths from COVID-19 for a total of 3,365 in Indiana since the start of the pandemic. Another 226 probable deaths have been reported based on clinical diagnoses.
Carmel offers trick-or-treating guidance
Carmel is giving to go ahead to its residents to participate in trick-or-treating activities on Oct. 31 between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.
The city recommends that all trick-or-treaters and their chaperones wear a mask if they are not able to maintain safe physical distancing. Only approach houses where the porch lights are on.
It's also suggested that homeowners avoid handing out candy if they are sick or are hesitant to have visitors. Homeowners should also consider wearing a mask.
Trick-or-treaters should only consume pre-packaged candy and other treats. Homemade treats should not be handed out nor consumed.
Marion County easing some restrictions beginning Monday, including capacity at restaurants, bars, gyms, churches
Marion County is easing some restrictions for businesses as the rest of the state has entered Stage 5 of Gov. Eric Holcomb's plan to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett and Marion County Public Health Department Director Dr. Virginia Caine provided an update of Marion County restrictions on various activities in a virtual press conference Friday morning.
Starting Monday, Sept. 28, the following changes go into place:
- Restaurants, bars, nightclubs and food establishments may have up to 50 percent indoor capacity and 100 percent outdoor capacity. Restaurants and bars will continue to be closed at midnight.
- Museum, cultural sites, music venues and other similar businesses are now able to open to 50 percent capacity.
- Gyms, fitness centers and similar businesses can also expand to 50 percent capacity.
- Live entertainment can resume at bars, clubs and performance venues with certain social distancing precautions in place. A 10-foot buffer should be maintained between the stage and audiences, as well as audiences social distancing themselves.
- Assisted living facilities may be open to indoor visitation.
- Funeral homes and churches can have indoor services at 75 percent capacity. Outdoor services can operate at 100 percent capacity.
Latest US, world numbers
There have been more than 7.11 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. as of 1:30 a.m. ET Monday, according to Johns Hopkins University. There have been more than 204,000 deaths and 2.76 million people recovered.
Worldwide, there have been 32.99 million confirmed cases with more than 996,000 deaths and 22.85 million recoveries.
The real number of people infected by the virus around the world is believed to be much higher — perhaps 10 times higher in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — given testing limitations and the many mild cases that have gone unreported or unrecognized.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness like pneumonia, or death.
Baseball reaches postseason, NHL will not bring back bubble for next season
Although it seemed initially that the Major League Baseball season might fall apart because of postponements and positive COVID-19 tests, every team except St. Louis and Detroit managed to play the full revamped schedule of 60 games. The Cardinals and Miami Marlins — the two teams hit particularly hard by the virus — both made the expanded postseason. Teams played shortened doubleheaders and the extra-inning rules were different, but in some small ways this season felt at least a little bit normal.
Baseball's postseason starts Tuesday with a best-of-three-game Wildcard round featuring 16 teams.
The National Hockey League, meanwhile, is started to look to it's 2020-2021 season. The league and Players' Association will meet within the next two weeks to discuss the many possibilities of what next season could look like, but there's no desire to stage it entirely within quarantined bubbles.
“Certainly not for a season, of course not,” NHLPA executive director Don Fehr told The Associated Press on Sunday. “Nobody is going to do that for four months or six months or something like that. Whether we could create some protected environments that people would be tested and they’d be clean when they came in and lasted for some substantially shorter period of time with people cycling in and out is one of the things I suspect we will examine.”
Not long after the Stanley Cup is awarded, which could be as soon as Monday night if the Lightning beat the Dallas Stars in Game 6 of the final game played in the Edmonton, Alberta bubble, the two sides will talk about when next season might start, how many games might be possible, what testing and protocols might be required and whether fans might be allowed into buildings at some capacity at some point.
A week after Commissioner Gary Bettman said a mid-to-late December or January start was possible, Fehr agreed that the tentative Dec. 1 opening night target date was the “earliest conceivable date” the season could start and there's good reason to believe it'll be later.
Fauci warns against 'pandemic fatigue'
The nation’s top infectious disease expert is cautioning people not to let pandemic fatigue weaken efforts to keep the coronavirus from spreading.
Dr. Anthony Fauci says that “people are exhausted from being shut down” and some give up on doing things that contain the virus.
The head of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases made the comment Friday in a podcast with a medical journal editor.
Fauci urges people to remember that “there is an end to this” and “we just have to hang in there a bit” as researchers work on a vaccine. Fauci says that “what we don’t want to have to do is to shut down again” if cases really spike.
The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, a model often cited by the White House, says it projects 371,000 deaths by Jan. 1, 2021 if there is no change to the current use of masks and social distancing measures. That's a decrease from the 410,451 projection IHME made on Sept. 3.
The IHME model notes mask use has ticked up slightly in the past three weeks to 48%. But it also projects an additional 96,000 lives could be saved through the end of the year if there was at least 95% mask usage.