Coronavirus History and Timeline
- Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) emerged from the Wuhan Province of China on December 1, 2019. (new information reported March 15 alleged that a patient may have contracted the disease on Nov. 17)
- The virus’ genome was completely sequenced on Jan 3, 2020, and named ‘2019-nCoV’ – later referred to as COVID-19, Novel Coronavirus or Wuhan Coronavirus
- On January 8, Chinese scientists announced the discovery of the new coronavirus (novel coronavirus).
- Thailand reported the first case of COVD-19 on January 13. The patient was a Chinese woman who lived in Wuhan and had arrived in Bangkok on Jan 8.
- On Jan 20, Chinese scientists announced that they had discovered two additional strains of 2019-nCoV (COVID-19) demonstrating that the virus had already mutated into additional strains.
- The United States reported its first case of 2019-nCoV on January 21st
- January 22: China finally quarantines the Greater Wuhan area, North Korea closes its borders
- January 24: Russian Far East closes border with China
- January 27: U.S. CDC raises travel advisory to China to level 3 “Avoid All Non-Essential Travel”
- January 30: U.S. CDC raises travel advisory for China to level 4 “Do not travel”. The State Department begins evacuation of non-essential personnel. Washington State declared a Level 1 Health Emergency as the deal with 9 patients under investigation for COVID-19
- Jan 31: U.S. Declares Public Health Emergency – anyone arriving from the Hubei province is to be quarantined for 14 days.
- Feb 29: U.S. announced travel ban from Iran due to COVID-19 and a travel warning for Italy
- March 11: United States bans all travel, effective 12:00 AM 3/13/20, from the European Union with the exclusion of the United Kingdom and Ireland.
- March 12: New York bans all gatherings of over 500 people. California and Oregon ban all gatherings of more than 250 people. Israel announces all schools and universities on Friday. U.S. Organizations cancel just about everything.
- March 13: President Trump declares a National Emergency over coronavirus pandemic, waived all interest on student loans held by government agencies
- March 14: Foreign nationals from the United Kingdom and Ireland will not be allowed into the United States beginning on March 16. President Donald Trump also received the results of his coronavirus test – he’s negative for the disease, is symptom-free and in good health.
- March 15: U.S. Federal Reserve announces drastic action to minimize economic impact (see economic impact section below)
- March 16: Ohio shuts down entertainment, exercise and recreation venues, governor shuts polling places despite court ruling preventing it. Canada closes its borders to all non-residents. Kentucky postpones its primary.
- March 18: President Trump signs Defense Production Act activation order and a coronavirus relief bill, closes border with Canada for non-essential travel. U.S. Census Bureau suspends field operations for two weeks.
- March 19: Anti-malaria drug Hydroxychloroquine and anti-viral drug Remdesivir are showing great promise in treating coronavirus. FDA is working to approve use in short order. President Trump cancels G7 meeting at Camp David, turns it into conference call. U.S. State Dept issues level 4 travel warning “Do Not Travel”
- March 20: U.S. closes border with Mexico for all non-essential travel, will return illegal aliens to country of origin immediately upon capture
- March 21: White House announces that FHA-held mortgages and properties will stop evictions and foreclosures for 60 days.
- March 22: National Guard activated to assist New York, Washington State and California deal with the Coronavirus outbreak. Washington State and New York have been declared major disaster areas, California has submitted a request and it is under consideration.
- March 23: Democrats block coronavirus relief bill because it doesn’t have carbon offsets for airlines, requirements for more minorities on corporate boards, payouts to labor unions, and tax breaks for solar and wind. United Kingdom goes on full lockdown.
- March 24: Japan postpones the 2020 summer Olympics until 2021
- March 25: U.S. Senate Passes Coronavirus relief bill providing more than $2 trillion in aid for workers, businesses and a cadre of Democratic donors.
- March 27: U.S. House of Representatives finally passes the Coronavirus relief bill, President Trump signs it into law.
- March 28: Hospital ship USNS Comfort heads to New York City
Current Disease Statistics for Coronavirus
- Total Confirmed Global Infections: 681,706
- Active Confirmed Global Infections: 504,128
- Global Deaths: 31882
- Global Mortality Rate: 4.7%
- Total Confirmed U.S. Infections: 124,686
- Active Confirmed U.S. Infections: 119,883
- U.S. Deaths: 2191
- U.S. Mortality Rate: 1.8%
*statistics from Johns Hopkins University, WHO, CDC, NIH
For comparison: The CDC estimates that the seasonal flu (influenza) has infected at least 39 million in the U.S., hospitalized more than 400,000 and killed at least 24,000 people in the United States during the 2019-2020 season.
Mortality Rates in Hotspot Regions
- China: 4.0%**
- Italy: 10.8%
- Spain: 8.0%
- Iran: 7.1%*
- United Kingdom: 5.9%
- France: 5.9%
- South Korea: 1.5%
*statistics provided by these governments are suspect and likely worse than reported
** physicians in Wuhan, China, admit that they haven’t been testing for coronavirus for at least a week which is the only reason no new cases are being reported there – ALL of China’s numbers are now suspect
U.S. Economic Impact of Coronavirus
The intensity of constant coverage of COVID-19 has caused people, companies, markets and organizations to panic and likely overreact. Seasonal influenza has been responsible for the infection and deaths of far more Americans than novel coronavirus, but the economic damage due to media bias is significant and ongoing.
The U.S. Stock Market officially entered bear market territory on March 11, 2020, having lost 20% of its value from market highs.
On March 12, the U.S. Federal Reserve announced $1.5 trillion in emergency short-term loans to financial institutions.
March 15: Fed lowers key rate to 0% in hopes of incentivizing lending.Will also expand balance sheet by $700 including $500 billion in t-bill purchases and $200 billion in agency-backed mortgage securities.
Ski Resorts: Vail Resorts and Alterra Resorts are suspending operations for at least one week.
Cruiselines: Viking and Princess Cruises have suspended operations indefinitely. Most lines have canceled all sailings for a 30-day period beginning on March 13.
Airlines: Delta to cut international capacity by 25% and domestic seats by 10%, instituted hiring freeze and suspending stock repurchase. American Airlines to cut international capacity by 10% and domestic by 7.5%. United will cut 20% of flights.
Disney: Both Disneyland and DisneyWorld are closed indefinitely
Universal Studios: closed indefinitely
SeaWorld: closed indefinitely
Washington D.C.: D.C. Metro service will be reduced to weekend schedules 24/7, Smithsonian Museums, National Zoo closed indefinitely. Capitol closed to the public, Senate offices closed.
New York City: Broadway shows, Smithsonian Museums closed.
Boston: Boston Marathon postponed
NCAA: The NCAA regional and national Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments have been canceled
NRA: 2020 Intercollegiate Championship canceled
NBA: Season suspended
NHL: Season suspended
MLB: Season suspended
MLS: Season suspended
NFL: Several teams stop air travel for scouts/coaches during the off-season
XFL: Season suspended
ATP/WTA: Season suspended
PGA: Players Championship canceled, Masters tournament postponed
NASCAR: Season suspended
Horse Racing: Kentucky Derby Postponed
AMC Theaters: Cutting capacity by 50%
Broadway: All performances canceled until at least April 12.
Coachella: Postponed from March to September
Stagecoach: Postponed until fall
Ultra Music Festival: Canceled
Tin Pan South Songwriting Festival: Canceled
Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade: Canceled
New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade: Canceled
Tribeca Film Festival: postponed
Movies: Several movie releases have been delayed
Concerts: Several concert tours have canceled or postponed events
How COVID-19 Has Impacted 2020 Elections
- CNN moved the March 15 Democrat debate from Phoenix, AZ, to their studios in Washington, D.C. There was no audience and no “spin rooms” for other media outlets to interact with the candidates, staff or attendees
- Biden and Sanders both canceled planned rallies in Cleveland, Ohio
- The Trump campaign has postponed all rallies and large events
Other Impacts from COVID-19
- Several colleges and universities have postponed or canceled commencement ceremonies.
- The U.S. Government will hold the G7 coronavirus response meeting virtually instead of in Pittsburgh.
- Universities move to online classes, keep students at home
- The U.S. Senate has canceled the March recess to work on coronavirus-related policy and closed Senate offices
- Apple announced closure of all of its stores on March 14.
- E3, Facebook, and Google conferences canceled
- Games Developer Conference postponed
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