In Minnesota, Black, Hispanic and Indigenous residents are two to three times more likely to die from COVID-19, and three to four times more likely to get infected with the coronavirus, according to new data from the Minnesota Department of Health.
The Oregon Health Authority released new “principles” for how to distribute medical care if hospital capacity diminishes as the coronavirus continues its rapid spread in the state. The new principles are “equity-driven” and health care providers should use them when deciding how to allocate resources, like beds, ventilators and treatments, if hospitals become overwhelmed.
Florida's health department will send the teams into long-term care facilities to vaccinate those at greatest risk of contracting the disease. Teams will include health workers and the National Guard.
In Arizona, 90% of all ICU beds and 90% of all in-patient beds in Arizona were in use mid-week, with 46% of ICU beds and 39% of non-ICU beds occupied by COVID-19 patients.
The announcement that New Hampshire House Speaker Dick Hinch, a Republican, died of COVID-19, upended state politics, throwing into question how the state’s 400-member legislative body plans to meet next year, how elected officials and staff might be protected and why some lawmakers have refused to wear masks as the pandemic has hit its second wave.
Because of a recent surge in coronavirus cases, ICUs in Mississippi hospitals are facing more pressure now than they did during a summer uptick, state health officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs said. Dobbs said 26 hospitals in the state were diverting critically ill patients to other places.
Tens of thousands of jobless Mainers will receive one-time payments of $600 from the state to mitigate the financial hardship that could occur if the federal unemployment programs many have relied on for months aren’t extended before they run out in less than three weeks.
About 1,600 New York National Guard members who are helping the state fight COVID-19 will be among the first members of the U.S. military to be vaccinated. New York and Indiana are the only states whose National Guard members will be inoculated in the initial push of vaccine distribution by the U.S. Department of Defense.
North Carolina Republican Party leaders ignored COVID-19 restrictions and recommendations when they held a party and meetings Saturday in Surry County. They then posted photos of the violations on their website. As of Thursday morning, 5,714 North Carolinians had reportedly died of COVID-19.
Citing "unacceptable strain" on hospitals from the pandemic, New Mexico banned nonessential surgery through Jan. 4.
Under new public restrictions meant to stem COVID-19, Virginia will be under a nightly curfew from midnight until 5 a.m., and social gatherings will be limited to 10 people. Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, announced the restrictions, which will take effect early Monday, citing a spike in COVID-19 cases during the busy holiday season.
Almost across the board, Washington became more Democratic in 2020. President-elect Joe Biden performed better in nearly every county than Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton did in 2016.
Idaho’s attorney general said he’s declining to join a lawsuit filed by Texas to overturn the outcome of the presidential election by invalidating the results in four battleground states President Donald Trump lost. In a statement, Republican Lawrence Wasden said the decision is necessary to protect Idaho’s sovereignty.
To balance the budget, Hawaii Gov. David Ige, a Democrat, announced he is imposing two-day-per-month furloughs for unionized state workers starting Jan. 1, which amounts to a pay cut of slightly more than 9%. However, the public worker unions contend that any furloughs must be negotiated, and the unions dispute Ige’s claim that the state needs to immediately impose furloughs.
Oklahoma public gatherings will be limited to 50% capacity, though churches will be exempt, Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt said. Attendance at youth indoor sporting will be limited to four spectators per participant or 50% of building capacity, whichever is less.
The head of the Salem County, New Jersey, chapter of the NAACP says that county workers and the general public weren’t notified about a COVID-19 outbreak at the county board of elections that has claimed a life. In all, 17 confirmed cases were tied to the outbreak.
As the District of Columbia Council considers legislation that would require hospitality employers to send job offers to workers they laid off during the pandemic, restaurant industry representatives are urging councilmembers to vote down or significantly alter the bill.
Indiana House Speaker Todd Huston, a Republican, has tested positive for coronavirus and is quarantining at home. He has experienced only mild symptoms and has not been in recent contact with legislative members or staff, according to a news release.
With the pandemic raging and Chicago at times dealing with civil unrest, Illinois residents shopped for more guns and applied for more firearm permits in 2020 than at any other time in history, Illinois State Police officials said. There had been more than 500,000 serious inquiries about purchasing guns by this month, representing a 45% increase over 2019.
More than 36,000 people filed for unemployment benefits in Colorado last week as jobless claims have climbed back to springtime levels in the shadow of the rampaging COVID-19 pandemic. The spike comes after state officials last month updated Colorado’s color-coded COVID-19 dial and enacted tighter restrictions on businesses in counties moved to level red.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, announced a financial assistance package that includes emergency tax relief for small businesses and forgiveness of $75 million in emergency loans. He did not announce any new statewide restrictions, though he has long said counties are free to enact more stringent limits on businesses and social gatherings.
Interviews with a dozen Iowans who received orders for repayment revealed that the state forgave at least part of the debt in some cases. But not everyone received the same treatment.
Alaska is now among a minority of states that lack mask-wearing requirements, despite some GOP governors imposing them even after initially resisting. So far, instead of issuing new mandates himself, Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy has pushed municipal officials to adopt them at the local level.
The Michigan legislature passed bills that would end automatic driver's license suspensions for traffic violations unrelated to dangerous driving, a practice that can trap people in poverty.
Texas’ audacious new lawsuit might prove just as do-or-die for the attorney general who filed it as it is for President Donald Trump. Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton fell into political peril this fall, facing a new set of criminal allegations.