New York records 5 deaths, lowest single-day tally since March

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June 29 (UPI) -- New York State recorded its lowest single-day death toll since mid-March when its outbreak was just beginning and cases were starting to climb, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said as other states experienced surges in infections.

In a statement on Sunday, the Democratic governor announced the once epicenter of the United States' COVID-19 outbreak recorded only five deaths in the previous 24 hours -- its lowest single-day tally since March 15.

He also said the state had fewer than 900 hospitalized patients with the disease -- also a first since March.

"Our progress is a direct result of New Yorkers' discipline and hard work and an incremental, data-driven reopening," he said, adding that while Sunday's numbers were "very encouraging," he urged his citizenry to "remain vigilant" or risk increases.

"Be smart, wear a mask, stay New York Tough!" he said.

The state recorded 616 new infections, also its fewest number of cases since mid-March.

New York leads all states in confirmed cases with 392,539 followed by California, which had 211,243 infections as of Sunday after confirming 4,810 cases in the past 24 hours.

California is one of several states that is seeing a surge in cases.

On Sunday, Gov. Gavin Newsom released guidance for recommending counties that have resided on the state's so-called monitoring list for three or more days to close bars while requiring those that have been on the list for two weeks or more to close immediately.

Bars in Fresno, Kern, Kings, Los Angeles and Tulare are required to close while those in Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara, Stanislaus and Ventura are only recommended to do so.

"Californians must remain vigilant against this virus," Newsom said in a statement. "COVID-19 is still circulating in California, and in some parts of the state, growing stronger. That's why it is critical we take this stop to limit the spread of this virus."

The United States has more cases than any other country at nearly 2.6 million, according to a live tracker of the virus by Johns Hopkins University.

Florida on Sunday added more than 8,530 cases after reporting a record of 9,585 cases the day before amid surging numbers, according to data from its department of health. It has a total of 141,075 infections and 3,419 deaths to the virus.

In Texas, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins has called on Gov. Greg Abbott to reinstitute stay-at-home orders and other strict measures to stop the spread of the deadly and infectious coronavirus as cases surge throughout the state.

In a letter dated Saturday but released to the public on Sunday, Jenkins asked Abbott to reinstitute stay-at-home orders for a month, enforce universal mask-wearing and physical distancing through fines, limit events and reduce indoor gatherings to 10 people and outdoor events to 100, among a slew of other recommendations.

.@DCHHS reports 570 cases and 1 death. Another daily record high number of #COVID19 cases. We're also announcing one more deaths bringing the total up to 352 deaths. I've also sent a letter to the Governor asking for mandatory masking and a new "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order.— Clay Jenkins (@JudgeClayJ) June 28, 2020

Jenkins in the letter urged Abbott to adopt the measures statewide "or at the very least regionally" and if he is not willing to do either then "please rescind your prior order restricting local control and allow Dallas County to implement the above recommendations in an effort to slow the spread of the rampant and devastating COVID-19 virus."

"Lives depend on swift action," he said.

Jenkins' call comes as cases throughout the state surge.

Texas has been vaulted to fourth in the nation in infections with nearly 150,000 after reporting six consecutive days of more than 5,000 new cases, according to data from Texas Health and Human Services.

Abbott in late April announced the first phase of the state's reopening plan, which rescinded strict measures, allowing businesses, such as restaurants and movie theaters, to open at limited capacity. The third phase of that plan was announced earlier this month.

However, Abbott put a pause to those plans last week and then signed an executive order to force all bars and similar establishments to close to thwart the skyrocketing number of infections.

Abbott expressed regret on Friday over his decision to reopen bars, stating "if I could go back and redo anything, it would have been to slow down the opening of bars."

In Dallas County, Jenkins said it had a record 570 positive case of the virus over Saturday and one death, lifting its totals to 20,165 infections and 352 fatalities. He said hospitalizations have also doubled in June.

On Twitter, Jenkins urged the public to follow the recommendations and not wait for them to be instituted.

"Do not go to the type of establishments that our public health doctors are saying are unsafe," he said, meaning movie theaters, gyms and the like. "Stay at home except for essential business trips and wear a mask when outside the home and around other people."

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