U.S. death toll passes 80,000, U.K. to begin lifting lockdown

Here are the latest updates on the global pandemic.
Image: Customers buy balloons and flowers for Mother's Day at the Los Angeles Flower Market on May 10, 2020.
Customers buy balloons and flowers for Mother's Day at the Los Angeles Flower Market on Sunday. Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP

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The U.S. death toll crossed 80,000 on Sunday, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Britain would begin easing its lockdown measures.

In Washington, Dr. Anthony Fauci on Saturday became the third member of the White House coronavirus task force to self-quarantine after possible exposure to the coronavirus.

Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who has emerged as the most high-profile public health expert on President Donald Trump's task force, will follow a “modified” quarantine for the next two weeks after “low-risk” exposure to a White House aide who tested positive, an administration official confirmed.

Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will also self-quarantine for 14 days, and Stephen Hahn, the administrator of the Food and Drug Administration, has already gone into quarantine. Two other people with access to the White House have also tested positive for the coronavirus, including Vice President Mike Pence's press secretary, Katie Miller.

As of Sunday afternoon, the U.S. death toll was 80,032, with more 1.3 million cases reported, according to an NBC News tally.

Here's what to know about the coronavirus, plus a timeline of the most critical moments:

Download the NBC News app for latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak.

This live coverage has now ended. Continue reading May 11 coronavirus news.

Under 1% of MLB employees test positive for virus antibodies

NEW YORK — Just 0.7% of Major League Baseball employees tested positive for antibodies to COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus.

Researchers received 6,237 completed surveys from employees of 26 clubs. That led to 5,754 samples obtained in the U.S. on April 14 and 15 and 5,603 records that were used. The survey kit had a 0.5% false positive rate.

Dr. Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford, one of the study’s leaders, said the prevalence of the antibodies among MLB employees was lower than for the general population during testing in New York, Los Angeles, the San Francisco area and Miami.

“I was expecting a little bit of a higher number,” Bhattacharya said during a telephone news conference Sunday. “The set of people in the MLB employee population that we tested in some sense have been less affected by the COVID epidemic than their surrounding communities.”

Poland to announce new election date within two weeks

WARSAW - The head of Poland's electoral commission said Sunday that the parliament speaker had 14 days to declare the date of a new presidential election in place of a vote that did not take place because of the coronavirus.

The declaration appeared to draw a line under a tumultuous debate in recent weeks over when the vote, originally scheduled for Sunday, should be held that has sown division within the ruling alliance and prompted the opposition to accuse the government of neglecting public health.

The nationalist Law and Justice government had insisted the election take place as scheduled, but was forced to admit in the past week that it could not organize it during the pandemic.

Anti-lockdown protesters carry weapons into North Carolina sandwich shop

Several armed demonstrators protesting North Carolina's stay-at-home order visited a sandwich shop in Raleigh on Saturday and were captured in photographs that went viral.Travis Long / newsobserver.com

A group of armed demonstrators protesting North Carolina's stay-at-home order visited a Raleigh restaurant this weekend, weapons slung over their shoulders, and were captured in photographs that went viral.

Travis Long, a photojournalist with The News & Observer, said he shot the photos inside a Subway on Fayetteville Street in downtown Raleigh.

Read the full story.

Pence putting 'a little distance' after staffer tests positive

Vice President Mike Pence was putting "a little distance" between himself and others this weekend after a staffer tested positive for COVID-19, a senior administration official told NBC News.

That official said Pence would take the advice of the White House medical unit and continues to test negative for the virus. The vice president chose not to attend a national security meeting on Saturday, the official said, adding that there is "no restriction" on his activities.

Pence distanced himself from others "out of caution," the official said.

Read the full story.

Baseball in a pandemic: 90 feet between bases, 6 feet between players

Organizers of a California baseball league, for college players with pro dreams, pitched plans for a socially distant version of America's pastime this summer.

Sports events, such as baseball games, are currently sidelined under state guidelines, a Department of Public Health official said Saturday.

The San Diego League said it could largely keep its players six feet apart during action and hopes to start on May 30 with no fans in the stands, if Sacramento says it's OK to play ball during the coronavirus pandemic.

The greatest crunch under the league's plan would be for the hitting team. That squad's roster of 18 would have to practice these social distancing guidelines: One in the batter's box, one in the on-deck circle, six spread in the dugout, three spaced through the bullpen and seven extended through the bleachers. 

Dozens of these college leagues invite top amateur players to compete with wood bats each summer, offering scouts glimpses of their pro potential. The nation's best known summer action for top collegiate talent, the Cape Cod League, cancelled its season on April 24

Coronavirus fatalities in the U.S. top 80,000

More than 80,000 people in the U.S. have now died from the coronavirus, according to an NBC News tally on Sunday.

The latest numbers reveal there are now 1,323,051 million confirmed cases and 80,033 fatalities.

The numbers come as many states have begun to reopen, including some that have been hard hit by the virus, like New Jersey, which has a reported 138,532 cases.

Among the states hardest hit by coronavirus deaths are New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Michigan, Connecticut and California.

GOP Sen. Alexander says increased testing is the 'only solution' for economic recovery

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., speaks at a committee hearing on Capitol Hill on May 7, 2020.Anna Moneymaker / Pool via Reuters

WASHINGTON — Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., said Sunday that Congress can’t allocate enough aid to offset the toll the coronavirus pandemic has taken on the U.S. economy, a reality that underscores the need for the country to rapidly scale up testing to give workers the peace of mind they need to return to work and jumpstart the economy.

“The only solution is test, trace, isolate, treatments and vaccines,” Alexander said during an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“We have to reopen the economy, we have to do it carefully, we have to let people go back to work and earn a living. And I don’t see us being able to appropriate much more money to help provide a counter to that.”

Read the full story here. 

When the virus hit Spain, this U.S. student opted to stay and help the most vulnerable

When the coronavirus pandemic stuck and her family begged her to return home to Ohio, Stacye Toups was offered an offramp.

She didn't even consider taking it.

Not only did she decide to stay in Spain, where she is studying medicine; she remained and volunteered to work in a hard-hit nursing home to help those most vulnerable to the respiratory illness.

Read the full story here.

Hong Kong’s nightlife gets back to normal as lockdown on bars ends

The streets of Hong Kong were filled with people on Saturday night as a month long lockdown on bars came to an end. Some restrictions still apply due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it didn't stop people from mingling and socializing.