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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a new national lockdown in England to slow down the spiral in new cases of Covid-19 on the same day the U.K. started the rollout of AstraZeneca's vaccine.
The increase in cases is likely fueled by a new and more transmissible variant of the virus that was first detected in England in November.
- Map of U.S. hot spots and worldwide Covid-19 cases.
- Tracking surges in states across the country this winter.
- Map of travel restrictions and which states have a mask mandate.
- Click here for more of NBC News' Covid-19 coverage.
Soccer pro Alex Morgan tests positive for Covid-19
Soccer star Alex Morgan revealed Tuesday that she is recovering from Covid-19.
The 31-year-old, who has won the FIFA Women’s World Cup twice as part of the United States women’s national soccer team, said she and her family were infected with the virus while in California over the holidays.
“We are in good spirits and recovering well,” she tweeted. “After our isolation is completed, I will follow US Soccer's return to play guidelines to ensure my body is fully recovered and I can join my teammates back on the field soon. Be safe and happy new year.”
Grammy Awards postponed due to 'deteriorating' coronavirus situation in Los Angeles
The 2021 Grammy Awards will no longer take place this month in Los Angeles and will broadcast in March due to a recent surge in coronavirus cases and deaths.
The Recording Academy announced that the annual show would shift from its original Jan. 31 broadcast to March 14.
"The deteriorating COVID situation in Los Angeles, with hospital services being overwhelmed, ICUs having reached capacity, and new guidance from state and local governments have all led us to conclude that postponing our show was the right thing to do," the academy said in a statement to NBC News.
The Grammys will be held in Los Angeles at the Staples Center. Los Angeles County, the epicenter of the crisis in California, has surpassed 10,000 Covid-19 deaths and has had 40% of the deaths in California. It is the third state to reach the 25,000 death count.
Georgia confirms first case of highly contagious U.K. variant
Georgia confirmed on Tuesday its first case of Covid-19 from the new, more contagious coronavirus variant that is thought to have first emerged in the United Kingdom.
The state’s public health office said the case involves an 18-year-old male with no recent travel history. Georgia is now the fifth state in the U.S. to identify the variant among new infections. Cases involving the new strain have also been reported in Colorado, California, Florida and New York.
The patient in Georgia is currently in isolation at home, and public health officials said they are working to identify his close contacts.
“The emergence of this variant in our state should be a wake-up call for all Georgians,” Dr. Kathleen Toomey, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Health, said in a statement. “Even as we begin roll out of a Covid-19 vaccine, we must not let down our guard and ignore basic prevention measures — wear a mask, social distance and wash your hands frequently.”
The new variant, which has already been reported in more than 30 countries, is estimated to be between 50 percent and 70 percent more contagious, though it does not seem to be more deadly or cause more severe illness.
FDA warns Congress about Covid test that may give false results
The Office of the Attending Physician, Dr. Brian Monahan, is responding to a public FDA warning issued yesterday that the coronavirus test administered on the Hill can be subject to false results, according to a memo obtained by NBC News.
In the memo, Monahan writes, “The Office of Attending Physician is presently monitoring a notice released this evening by the FDA regarding the performance characteristics of the Curative test to detect coronavirus using the RT-PCR system. This test system in presently used in the CVC test center at the Capitol. This test uses a tip-of-the-nose swab obtained by our patients under medical supervision.”
Monahan asserts the test "is the most accurate available" and inaccurate results plague all Covid-19 testing.
He adds they expect more information in the coming days from the FDA. The memo was fiorst reported by Politico.
Testing at the Capitol was made available in November to all members, staff and reporters working on the Hill after months of pushback to the idea from House and Senate leadership.
There is a heavy reliance on this testing system by the thousands who work in the building on a daily basis. The full House and Senate return from all across the country as they prepare to certify the Electoral College results Wednesday.
Click here for the full story.
Beloved Oklahoma physical therapist dies from Covid: 'All she wanted to do was help people'
On their first date 25 years ago, Chris Kalinski realized that Rose Giroux, the woman he would eventually marry and have two sons with, knew just about everybody in Norman, Oklahoma.
They met at the physical therapy office where Rose had just started working and Chris, a college student, had been receiving treatment from a different therapist.
On that first date, they went to the store to buy ingredients to cook a romantic dinner together. Once inside, they split up, each tackling half of the grocery list.
"I walk into the freezer section and I see her talking to somebody — and it was my dad," Chris said. "I walked up and I go, 'I didn't know you knew each other, did you meet my dad like randomly or what?,'
"She said, 'Oh no, he's one of my patients.'"
Rose had a reputation around Norman of being the caretaker for just about everybody. So, when she died of Covid-19 on Nov. 23 — just six days shy of what should have been her 49th birthday — it came as a great comfort, but little surprise, to her husband to receive letters from strangers and hear stories from those whose lives she had touched.
Sandy Hook massacre first responder dies from Covid-19
One of the first Connecticut state troopers to respond to the Sandy Hook school shooting in 2012 has died from Covid-19.
Retired Trooper First Class Patrick Dragon of Brooklyn, CT died from the virus on Jan. 2 at Hartford Hospital, the Connecticut State Police said in a statement on its Facebook page.
Dragon was an officer with the Connecticut State Police for 20 years and retired in 2018. During his time with the agency, Dragon served as a patrol trooper, resident trooper and as a detective in the Eastern District Major Crime Squad and the Fire and Explosion Investigation Unit.
Upon his retirement, he worked as a police dispatcher for the Foster Police Department in Foster, RI. He was remembered as a kind and caring friend to all who met him, Foster Police Department Chief David Breit said in a statement.
Cleveland Browns head coach, 4 others test positive
Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski, two other coaches and two players have tested positive for Covid-19 ahead of the NFL team's first playoff game in nearly two decades.
"Our facility is currently closed while contact tracing is taking place. The team will continue to consult with the league and medical experts to determine the appropriate next steps as the health and safety of our players, coaches, staff and the entire community remains our highest priority," the team said in a statement Tuesday.
The Browns are scheduled to play Sunday at 8:15 p.m. against the Pittsburgh Steelers, in their first postseason appearance since 2002.
Italy extends travel restrictions another week
ROME — The Italian government has extended travel restrictions and other measures for another week in its modified Christmas season lockdown to try to head off a new surge in coronavirus infections.
A decree approved by the Cabinet early Tuesday extends the measures to Jan. 15. At the same time, the government agreed to begin letting high school students return to class starting next week, but only in limited numbers. High schools have been on remote learning since the end of October, though elementary and middle schoolers have been attending in-person school since the start of the academic year.
Italy, the first country in the west to be slammed by the virus, has been trying to control its latest wave of infections with localized restrictions. After two months of restrictions, infections have plateaued but hospitals are still under pressure, hundreds of people are still dying every day and officials fear cases could surge again due to holiday get-togethers.
Italy has reported over 75,600 confirmed virus deaths in the pandemic, but experts say many COVID-19 deaths were not counted early in the pandemic.
U.S. closes in on 21 million Covid-19 cases
The country is on the verge of counting its 21 millionth Covid-19 case, after recording 222,349 cases and 1,822 deaths Monday.
As of Tuesday morning, the U.S. has 20.9 million cases and 354,313 deaths according to NBC News' tally.
The U.S. averaged 2,569 deaths and 213,000 cases per day the past week. Four weeks ago that number was an average of 2,390 deaths and 225,000 cases per day.
Monday, Rhode Island set single-day records of 78 deaths and 4,759 cases and 78 deaths, although the state had reported zero cases and deaths since Dec. 30 2020.