Virus morning brief: 'New normal' varies widely around world; GOP allies recruit 'pro-Trump' doctors
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Virus morning brief: 'New normal' varies widely around world; GOP allies recruit 'pro-Trump' doctors

Rising anxiety may be the common denominator as countries around the world gradually emerge from lockdowns due to the new coronavirus.

What a return to normal looks like varies widely. There are hungry migrant workers in India finally able to catch trains back to their home villages and wealthy shoppers in Maseratis and Rolls-Royces returning to the boutiques of America’s iconic Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, California. In Italy, once-packed restaurants and cafes are facing a huge financial hit as they reopen with strict social distancing rules.

And there are worries about job security. Airline engine maker Rolls-Royce announced plans Wednesday to cut 9,000 workers as it grapples with the collapse in air travel due to the pandemic. Read the full story here:

Here's an update on all developments. Scroll or swipe further for in-depth coverage.

  • Republican political operatives are recruiting “extremely pro-Trump” doctors to go on television to prescribe reviving the U.S. economy as quickly as possible, without waiting to meet safety benchmarks proposed by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to slow the spread of the new coronavirus.
  • President Donald Trump threatened Wednesday to hold up coronavirus relief money for Michigan after he said — erroneously — that the state had sent absentee ballots to millions of voters. It's not clear that he can do so.
  • New Jersey has launched a website to debunk rumors and hoaxes associated with the spread of the new coronavirus, following a false text message of an impending national lockdown that circulated widely across the United States. Similar actions are underway in other states to knock down potentially harmful misinformation.
  • U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Wednesday that the coronavirus pandemic threatens Africa’s progress and could push millions into extreme poverty.
  • Cambridge has become the first university in Britain to cancel all face-to-face lectures for the 2020-21 academic year because of the coronavirus pandemic, after 800 years of welcoming students to its cloisters, quadrangles and classrooms.
  • President Donald Trump emphatically defended himself against criticism from medical experts that his announced use of a malaria drug against the coronavirus could spark wide misuse by Americans of the unproven treatment with potentially fatal side effects.
  • Second Lady Karen Pence visited Great Smoky Mountains National Park to talk about the mental health benefits of spending time outdoors as officials announced the second phase of a plan to reopen all park trails.
  • High schools nationwide have canceled or postponed traditional graduation ceremonies to avoid worsening the spread of the new coronavirus, but some are going ahead with full-fledged springtime commencement exercises as usual, with tweaks to account for health concerns.
  • Virtual safaris are helping to distract people under coronavirus lockdowns while attracting badly needed support for African wildlife parks hit hard by the disappearance of tourists.
  • Aircraft engine maker Rolls-Royce announced plans Wednesday to cut 9,000 workers as it grapples with the collapse in air travel.
  • Oprah Winfrey is giving grants to the cities she’s called home through her $12 million coronavirus relief fund. She announced Wednesday that her Oprah Winfrey Charitable Foundation will donate money to organizations dedicated to helping underserved communities in Chicago; Baltimore; Nashville, Tennessee; Milwaukee; and Kosciusko, Mississippi, where she was born.

For more summaries and full reports, please select from the articles below. Scroll further for interactive maps tracking the spread and some "good news" photos from New Orleans.

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Photos: Donations bring jazz band to New Orleans hospital

A New York woman collaborated with the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra to put on what she calls a stimulus serenade to give moral support to front-line hospital workers and COVID-19 patients in New Orleans.

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