On Friday afternoon, my company discussed the development of recommissioning plans.

Perhaps the massive protests from last weekend compelled Gov. Gavin Newsom to make better choices, or perhaps the fact that other states are beginning to open up was a factor in this decision.

California entered “Stage 2” of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s reopening plan, which allows lower-risk workplaces like book sellers, clothing stores, florists and sporting goods outlets to conduct business — but with social distancing modifications.

…In Iowa, dental services can resume starting Friday if they comply with guidelines adopted by the state’s dental board.

Businesses like campgrounds, drive-in movie theaters, tanning facilities and health spas can also reopen in Iowa with limited capacity and “appropriate public health measures,” officials said.

In Texas, hair and beauty salons are allowed to reopen Friday with social limits, such as one customer per stylist.

Rhode Island becomes first in Northeast bloc to lift stay-at-home order

The last one across this line will be the loser.

Rhode Island on Saturday will become the first state in the Northeast coalition to lift its stay-at-home order during the coronavirus outbreak.

The move will permit the reopening of noncritical retail stores and offices, but with capacity limits, the state says. Elective medical procedures also will be allowed to resume.

“My goal is to get as many people back to work as quick as possible without ever jeopardizing our public health and without ever having to go backwards to where we’ve just come from, which is shutting down our economy,” Gov. Gina Raimondo said Thursday.

She is expected to sign an executive order Friday establishing the beginning of phase one of reopening the state’s economy, WPRI reports.

Apple to start gradual reopening of U.S. stores next week

Apple plans to open its U.S. retail stores next week.

The reopening of its 271 US locations — which have been shuttered in March due to the coronavirus — will be gradual, starting with six stores in Alabama, Alaska, South Carolina and Idaho, the company said.

“We’re excited to begin reopening stores in the US next week,” an Apple representative told CNBC, which first reported the news. “Our team is constantly monitoring local health data and government guidance, and as soon as we can safely open our stores, we will.”

The reopened stores require temperature checks for employees and customers and will limit the number of people in the store at any one time. The stores will also focus more on repairing products and preparing items for pick-up than making in-store sales, according to Apple, which has launched a number of products via press release over the past two months and then selling them on its website.

U.S. Field Hospitals Stand Down, Most Without Treating Any COVID-19 Patients

Hopefully, some important lessons were learned during the response to this illness…especially the reliance on experts and their models.

Public health experts said this episode exposes how ill-prepared the U.S. is for a pandemic. They praised the Army Corps for quickly providing thousands of extra beds, but experts said there wasn’t enough planning to make sure these field hospitals could be put to use once they were finished.

“It’s so painful because what it’s showing is that the plans we have in place, they don’t work,” said Robyn Gershon, a professor at New York University’s School of Global Public Health. “We have to go back to the drawing board and redo it.”

But the nation’s governors — who requested the Army Corps projects and, in some cases, contributed state funding — said they’re relieved these facilities didn’t get more use. They said early models predicted a catastrophic shortage of hospital beds, and no one knew for sure when or if stay-at-home orders would reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

“All those field hospitals and available beds sit empty today,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, said last month. “And that’s a very, very good thing.

Coronavirus could be sexually transmitted by recovering patients, new research shows

Perhaps the newly resigned British pandemic modeler Neil Ferguson can be reached for comment?

The coronavirus disease COVID-19 could be transmitted through sexual intercourse, a new study has concluded, prompting fears of a new way the disease could be spread.

The virus was found in the semen of a small number of men who had tested positive for COVID-19 at a hospital in China. Doctors at China’s Shangqiu municipal hospital analyzed the sperm of 38 men and found SARS-CoV-2 in some of their semen.

The study was based on a small sample size, so more work would need to be done to establish whether the coronavirus can be sexually transmitted. If so, this would be a worrying development because it means the disease could be transmitted human-to-human beyond respiratory droplets and contact.

The results are at odds with other small studies, also conducted in China, in February and March, which did not find traces of the disease in the semen of men who had tested positive for the coronavirus.

I will simply note that Chinese studies on this virus have been…unreliable.

 

 
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