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Coronavirus Briefing: What Happened Today


President Trump’s positive coronavirus test sent a shudder around the world, shook global markets and instantly upended the presidential race just 32 days before the election.

A lot has happened since that announcement, but here’s where things stand as of early this evening.

Aides said the president had a fever, nasal congestion and a cough. During the course of the day he was given an experimental antibody treatment and isolated at the White House with the first lady, Melania Trump, who also tested positive. Their son, Barron, tested negative. In the late afternoon, the president was taken to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he is expected to spend several days.

White House officials said that Mr. Trump remained able to carry out his duties. The Trump campaign said that his campaign rallies were canceled for now.

On several recent trips, including the presidential debate, two rallies and a fund-raiser, the president did not wear a mask, nor did many of those meeting or traveling with him. Crowded, indoor, nonmasked conditions are a recipe for so-called super-spreader events, in which a single infected person transmits the virus to dozens of others, research has shown.

But it is still not known how the president contracted the virus. One possibility is that it was transmitted at an outdoor ceremony last Saturday where Mr. Trump announced the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court and where few attendees wore masks or practiced social distancing. Other guests, including Senator Mike Lee and the Rev. John I. Jenkins, the president of University of Notre Dame, have also tested positive.

Vice President Mike Pence — the first in line to assume the Oval Office if Mr. Trump becomes too ill to carry out his duties — tested negative for the virus on Friday. Mr. Biden, who debated the president on Tuesday, tested negative for the coronavirus twice on Friday. Experts warned that it can take several days after exposure for the virus to reach detectable levels.


Experts say that the next week will be crucial for the president as he battles Covid-19.

Earlier today, Mr. Trump received an infusion of an experimental antibody cocktail developed by the biotech company Regeneron.

There are no approved treatments for Covid-19, but the Regeneron treatment is one of the most promising candidates, along with another antibody treatment developed by Eli Lilly. Both have already been tested in patients across the country, and initial results suggest that they can reduce the level of virus in the body and shorten time in the hospital if given early in an infection.

The antiviral treatment has not been authorized for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration, but Regeneron’s chief executive, Dr. Leonard S. Schleifer, said that Mr. Trump’s medical staff reached out to the company for permission to use the drug, and that it was cleared with the F.D.A.

Mr. Trump, who is 74, is in a high-risk group for falling seriously ill with Covid-19. He has moderate heart disease, an underlying condition that puts him at higher risk, and he takes a drug for high cholesterol, loves fast food and doesn’t get much exercise other than golfing.

Older men are also up to twice as likely to die from the disease as older women, and Mr. Trump is at extra risk because he is overweight. Researchers have found people with extra weight may struggle to mount a robust immune response to the virus and are at higher risk for developing a severe case of Covid-19.


  • A major spike in Wisconsin is swamping hospitals. The state is now averaging more than 2,400 new cases each day, more than triple the average at the start of September.

  • The city of Tulsa, Okla., now requires people age 10 and up to wear a mask in public spaces. Previously, the mandate applied to those 18 or older. Coronavirus cases are up 11 percent in Oklahoma in the last two weeks

  • Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City said that the city’s seven-day average for positive test results had risen to 1.53 percent, driven by several hot-spot neighborhoods in Brooklyn. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said that 648 people across the state were hospitalized with the disease, a level not seen since late July.

Here’s a roundup of restrictions in all 50 states.



We delved deeper into family and regional history. We visited and documented numerous resting places of our family’s ancestors (cemeteries are a great socially distanced outing), explored small North Carolina towns and rural counties, and connected with amazing distant cousins. It’s been such an enriching experience for the kids, who now drop the names of their great-grandparents in everyday conversations and have a new awareness of their roots.

— Y. B. Howell Wilmington, N.C.

Let us know how you’re dealing with the pandemic. Send us a response here, and we may feature it in an upcoming newsletter.

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Remy Tumin contributed to today’s newsletter.

Email your thoughts to briefing@nytimes.com.

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