AFP via Getty Images

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) plans to stop calling the coronavirus an epidemic because of a major drop in deaths.

The death rate has fallen so low that "the percentage is currently at the epidemic threshold."

"Based on death certificate data, the percentage of deaths attributed to pneumonia, influenza or COVID-19 (PIC) decreased from 9.0% during week 25 to 5.9% during week 26, representing the tenth week of a declining percentage of deaths due to PIC," the CDC wrote on its website.

In a leaked memo in April, the CDC urged doctors to classify "probable" deaths as COVID-19-related.

The memo stated tests were not necessary to confirm COVID-related death. Doctors complained that the COVID-19 death rate was artificially inflated.

As a result of the CDC's memo, many family members were denied insurance payouts since insurance companies do not cover pandemic-related illnesses.

Families filed lawsuits against doctors and hospitals which effectively ended the false diagnoses and the COVID-19 death rate tumbled.

Photo may have been deleted


A doctor based in Spain has self-quarantined in his home after he was diagnosed with the Covid-19 virus on Sunday. Dr. Yale Tung Chen contracted the virus while treating patients. He decided to document the course of his illness online to help relieve the public's fear and anxiety over the outbreak.

Covid-19 is a virus similar to the flu that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) among the elderly population and those with chronic illness, people with weak immune systems, or smokers.

Dr. Yale Tung Chen began documenting his illness in an online diary on day 1, telling his Twitter followers he had a sore throat and developed "a dry cough and a strong headache". He said he had a low-grade fever which "soon disappeared over the weekend."

He said, "It was reassuring to see [his lungs] were completely normal" on lung scans.

Day 2

"The headache and the sore throat started to fade away on day two. On the lungs there appeared to be a little effusion [liquid] with signs of pneumonia on the back." The doctor stated he had developed mild pneumonia which he is treating at home by taking Motrin and Tylenol and doing push ups, adding: "I'm doing fine."

Those with weak immune systems will need to be seen in hospital if they develop pneumonia.

Day 3

Dr. Yale Tung Chen said: "Today the cough went heavily up, and has now calmed. Diarrhea started." Referring to his ultrasound of his lungs, he said it "remained similar" to the previous chest scans. "I'm feeling well, and there is no data to say the opposite."

Day 4

Dr. Yale Tung Chen told LBC News he was feeling "awfully tired" by Thursday - four days after his diagnosis. He said his latest ultrasound shows pneumonia in the middle lobe of his right lung. "More cough & tiredness (very badly), still no [pain on inhaling]/chest pain." More fluid buildup in left lung.

Photo may have been deleted

He said he was "overwhelmed" by the public response to his health diary.

For most healthy people under age 60, the novel coronavirus causes only mild symptoms such as cough, headache, sore throat and low-grade fever.

The virus can cause serious illness among the elderly population, particularly those with existing health problems such as heart and respiratory problems or diabetes.

So far, the majority of the 38 deaths in the US are elderly and chronically ill. The average age is 80.

Photo by James Shaw/

Tom Hanks and his wife of 32 years, Rita Wilson have tested positive for the coronavirus, also known as Covid-19.

The megacouple announced they acquired the virus while filming down under in Australia. But Australian health officials say not so fast.

According to Australian health officials, the power couple contracted the virus in the United States before traveling to Australia.

Hanks announced that they were diagnosed with the virus while both were on location filming an upcoming biopic about Elvis Presley in Queensland, Australia.

Photo by Sheri Determan/

Without naming the stars, officials from the Queensland Health department said that they believed that all the new cases, including Tom and Rita, both 63, originated outside Australia.

"At this stage we believe all seven contracted the illness outside Australia and traveled to Queensland with the virus," an official said in a press conference posted on Facebook. "They are all receiving fantastic care at hospitals throughout Queensland.

A later Facebook post stated that a 63-year-old male is "in isolation in the Gold Coast Hospital in a stable condition" having recently arrived there from the U.S., and that a female who was his traveling companion is in a similar condition in the same hospital.

Photo by Papadakis Press/

Production on the Elvis biopic, in which Tom was due to play the rock legend's manager Colonel Tom Parker, has shut down - with cast and crew sent home to await instructions.

A spokesperson for the film's studio, Warner Bros., has said they are working with local health officials to identify those who may be at risk of contracting the virus.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk also advised those who may have come into close contact with the famously approachable stars to self-isolate and quarantine.

Photo by Corbis via Getty Images

Hanks met Wilson in 1981 on the set of TV comedy Bosom Buddies. They were reunited in 1985 on the set of Volunteers, and they wed in 1985. Their sons Chet and Colin, who are in constant contact with their parents, have said the couple is doing well.


Photo by Adriana M. Barraza/WENN

Actor Tom Hanks is the first A-list celebrity to test positive for the Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19).

The 63-year-old Oscar-winning actor and his wife Rita Wilson were both diagnosed with the virus that causes potentially fatal pneumonia among the elderly population.

The Hanks have been in Australia where he is filming a forthcoming Elvis Presley biopic when they began experiencing flu-like symptoms. They both subsequently tested positive for the virus.

Photo by Adriana M. Barraza/WENN

In a cheerful, upbeat statement that he shared on social media, Hanks wrote:

"Hello, folks. Rita and I are down here in Australia. We felt a bit tired, like we had colds, and some body aches. Rita had some chills that came and went. Slight fevers too,

"To play things right, as is needed in the world right now, we were tested for Coronavirus, and were found to be positive.

"Well, now. What to do next? The Medical Officials have protocols that must be followed. We Hanks' will be tested, observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires. Not much more to it than one-day-at-a-time approach, no?"

He concluded with: "We'll keep the world posted and updated. Take care of yourselves! Hanx!"

For most healthy people, the novel coronavirus causes only mild symptoms such as cough, headache, sore throat and low-grade fever.

The virus can cause serious illness among the elderly population, particularly those with existing health problems such as heart and respiratory problems or diabetes.

So far, the 33 deaths in the US are elderly and chronically ill. The average age is 80.

Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is reportedly canceled due to concerns over the coronavirus outbreak in the US.

The Coachella music festival is held in April every year in Indio, California. Coachella and the follow up Stagecoach festival have been moved to October this year.

Artists who received top billing at Coachella in the past include Beyonce and Jay-Z, Kanye West, Ariana Grande, The Weekend, Tyler, the Creator, and more.

Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

This year's lineup included Doja Cat (pictured left), Travis Scott, Frank Ocean, Rage Against the Machine, Megan Thee Stallion, DaBaby, 21 Savage, Big Sean, City Girls, Lana Del Rey, Lil Uzi Vert, FKA Twigs, Ari Lennox, Lil Nas X, and many more.

Music fans expressed their disappointment on social media. Many agree that organizers are overreacting to a virus that is no worse than the flu.

Photo may have been deleted

Photo may have been deleted

Photo may have been deleted

Photo may have been deleted

This is an open post where you can discuss any subject matter. This post will not be censored or moderated. Disqus may automatically moderate certain words considered offensive. There are no rules in Open Posts. So enter at your own risk.

Photo by Prince Williams/

Media reports about the coronavirus (Covid-19) have caused widespread panic around the world. But health experts say the virus is only a danger to certain populations such as the elderly, people with chronic illnesses, and smokers.

Dr. Norman Swan is urging smokers to quit to avoid developing a fatal pneumonia if you catch the virus.

For most of us, the Covid-19 virus will cause mild symptoms such as cough, sore throat and a low-grade fever. But health experts warn the effects of nicotine and smoke inside the lungs makes smokers more vulnerable to the virus.

Stock photo: Getty Images

People who smoke have weaker lungs because smoke is caustic and damages the fragile lining inside the lungs. If the lining of the lung is damaged, it causes the lungs to leak, prevents the exchange of oxygen and C02, and may require the patient to be placed on a ventilator.

Dr. Swan said smokers are particularly at risk of getting sick -- and dying.

"If you are a smoker, the lining of your lungs is more vulnerable and you're producing more of the (ACE2) receptors which the COVID-19 virus latches on to.

"So quit now -- there are plenty of resources around to help you [quit]."

Photo: starsurf / Splash News

Professor Chris Whitby, Englands's chief medical officer, said: "For most respiratory infections, you worry about people who smoke a bit more. They're more likely to get it and their immune system is less good. If you are going to give up smoking, this is a very good moment to do it."

The CDC offers the following tips to avoid spreading the flu or Covid-19 virus:

1. Wash your hands frequently with soap for at least 20 seconds

2. Don't touch your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands

3. Avoid close contact with sick people

4. Stay home if you are sick

5. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, refrigerator handles, etc.

Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Doja Cat is not afraid of a corona -- the virus or the beer. The 24-year-old rapper, born Amalaratna Zandile Dlamini, says those who are running scared from the virus are "pu$$y."

In a livestream interview, Doja said, "B*tch, I'm not scared of a coronavirus or the motherf*cking beer version of that sh*t."

Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Doja, who is clearly more educated on the virus than some of her fans, added: "I don't give a f*ck about corona, b*tch. It's a flu! I would literally... I'm not scared. Y'all are pu$$y, period."

The former stripper offered some advice if for those who catch the flu or the coronavirus: "You just take some Mucinex and drink water and tea and sleep -- that's all you gotta do. Y'all are so scared of some damn corona. Y'all are so scared of corona that I need a Corona."

Photo by FameFlynet / BACKGRID

The CDC confirmed 20,000 deaths due to the common flu in the U.S. Only 26 people (out of thousands infected) have died from the coronavirus - and all but one are elderly or those with chronic illnesses.

The population most at risk for the flu or coronavirus are Asians, elderly, those with chronic illnesses or weak immune systems and smokers.

Coronavirus-19 causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and potentially fatal pneumonia among the elderly population and those with chronic illness and weak immunity.

Those at low risk are children, young healthy people under age 50, and Blacks of African descent.

The virus causes mild flu-like symptoms in most healthy adults under age 50. Children seem to be unaffected or have mild symptoms. No child under age 10 has died from the virus anywhere in the world.


This is an open post where you can discuss any subject matter. This post will not be censored or moderated. Disqus may automatically moderate certain words considered offensive. There are no rules in Open Posts. So enter at your own risk.


Talk about overreacting: the Italian government locked down the entire country in a desperate effort to slow down the Coronavirus -- which many experts have said is no worse than the common flu for most healthy people.

Flights in and out of the country are suspended, and the government suspended mortgages for homes and businesses as families struggle to pay bills while they stay home from work.

"Yes, that will be the case, for individuals and households," said Laura Castelli, Italy's deputy economy minister.

Italy's banking lobby ABI said on Monday lenders representing 90 percent of total banking assets would offer debt moratoriums to small firms and households during the lockdown.


Heavily armed police roamed the streets of Milan and Naples to enforce the lockdown and maintain law and order in the streets. Officers warned residents to stay home. Any traveler arriving in the country by car are held in a mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Residents are allowed to shop for groceries but few grocery stores are open, resulting in long lines. Only 3 shoppers are allowed in the stores at one time. Residents are ordered to stay at least 3 feet apart.

Irrational fears of the Coronavirus, aka Covid-19 or Coronavirus-2019, has spread around the world.

The U.S. stock market went into a free fall just after the opening bell on Monday, causing an emergency breaker to halt trading 15 minutes in.

The Milan stock market also took a pounding, falling 17 percent since the outbreak began in Italy.

The government confirmed 9,000 Coronavirus-19 cases and 463 dead as of Monday night. But many Italian people have not been tested.

The virus causes mild flu-like symptoms in most healthy adults under age 50. Children seem to be unaffected or have mild symptoms. No child under age 10 has died from the virus anywhere in the world.

Coronavirus-19 causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and potentially fatal pneumonia among the elderly population and those with chronic illness and weak immunity.

Here in Atlanta, Fulton County closed all schools after one teacher tested positive for the virus.

Critics point out that school closures will force parents to leave their children at home with their grandparents - the population most vulnerable to the virus.

Photo may have been deleted

Photo by Getty Images

Critics were outraged when President Trump named Vice President Mike Pence to head a task force overseeing the nation's response to the Coronavirus.

They pointed to Pence's handling of the HIV outbreak in southern Indiana when he was governor.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) noticed a spike of new HIV cases clustered in Scott County in March 2015.

Stock photo via Getty Images

Nearly 200 people tested positive for HIV in small time period in tiny area of the US. The HIV outbreak was eventually traced to intravenous drug users sharing dirty needles.

The CDC and the local health department suggested a needle exchange program similar to the one in California that allowed IV drug users to exchange their dirty needles for clean ones.

But Pence, a devout Christian, had his doubts about enabling intravenous drug users by giving them needles to feed their habit.

After pressure from the CDC, he eventually issued an executive order allowing a program in Scott County before signing a law allowing the state to approve the program for counties on a case-by-case basis.

But critics said Pence's action was too little too late.

They claim Pence dragged his feet for a year - allowing more drug addicts to contract HIV and hepatitis C.

Greg Millett, director of public policy at amfAR, said Indiana's HIV outbreak would have been "entirely preventable" if Pence had only acted sooner.

Stock photo via Getty Images

Pence took credit for Indiana's successful needle exchange program in an interview with Fox News Channel's Sean Hannity on Wednesday night.

"We worked the problem early in the year from a law enforcement standpoint, from a health standpoint. I don't believe in needle exchanges as a way to combat drug abuse, but in this case we came to the conclusion that we had a public health emergency, and so I took executive action to make a limited needle exchange available."

Needle exchanges were illegal in Indiana before Pence changed the law. The needle exchange program now operates in nine of Indiana's 92 counties.

Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images

President Trump announced on Wednesday he is appointing Vice President Mike Pence to head a task force to confront a coronavirus outbreak in the U.S.

As President Trump said, "The risk to the American people remains very low" since the common flu virus is far deadlier than the coronavirus outside of Asia.

The typical flu virus kills an average of 40,000 people a year in the U.S. There are no coronavirus deaths in the U.S.

"We're ready. We're ready for anything," Pence said. "We're all in this together. This is not the time for partisanship. This president will always put the health and safety of America first."

The Coronavirus (known as COVID-19) has not yet hit the U.S. as hard as it has hit Asian countries.

So far, there are 60 confirmed cases in the U.S. and no deaths.

The coronavirus enters the body by attaching to ACE2 receptors. ACE2 (Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2) is an enzyme that is expressed predominantly in the heart, kidneys and testicles.

East Asians and Caucasian men have more ACE2 enzyme receptors and are more at risk for Coronavirus infections.

The risk of infection is lower for Black people of African descent, women and white Europeans.

According to health experts the coronavirus is highly contagious and can enter the body through the mucous membranes of the eyes as well as inhaled into the lungs.

Mucous membranes lines various openings of the body including the eyes, inner nose, inner ears, inner lips, mouth, vagina, urethral opening and the anus.

Unlike our skin, mucous membranes are porous and allows the passage of gas, liquid or microscopic viruses into the bloodstream.

The coronavirus is smaller than the HIV virus, which means COVID-19 can easily enter the body through openings such as the eyes, mouth and nasal passages.

No photo

When treating patients infected with COVID-19, medical personnel must wear face masks and eye protection shields (such as this one) to protect against the virus entering the body through the eyes, mouth and nose.

If you think you have been infected with Coronavirus, the CDC advises you to stay home to prevent spreading the virus. Wash your hands frequently, and drink plenty of fluids.

Piedmont's WellStreet Urgent Care Clinics in Atlanta and surrounding suburbs sent out a newsletter to educate patients about the coronavirus.

The following are excerpts from the newsletter:

What are the symptoms of Coronavirus infection?

The symptoms are fever, cough, and shortness of breath. However, many infected people will have rather mild symptoms, like a sore throat. While it is unclear why some people deteriorate, most of those infected with Coronavirus recover fully after a mild illness.

How is Coronavirus spread?

The virus spreads through contact with another infected person. It may take 2-14 days for someone to become ill after being exposed to the Coronavirus. This time frame is called the incubation period. As you may already know, while there are sporadic cases in many countries throughout the world, the vast majority of infections remain in China. For that reason, if you have NOT traveled to China within the past 14 days or been exposed to someone who has been diagnosed with Coronavirus infection, you are highly unlikely to have the disease.

What should I do if I get a fever and cough?

While things can certainly change, for now, you are far more likely to have influenza or another type of respiratory infection. At Piedmont Urgent Care, we can evaluate and test for flu and other infections. There are treatments available that can help shorten the duration of flu and reduce symptoms. And if needed, we can check for pneumonia with a chest x-ray.

Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images

President Trump announced he will hold a Coronavirus press conference this evening, a day after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned the virus outbreak in the US will be bad.

Trump will hold a press conference from the White House at 6 PM ET.

Trump made the announcement on after the Democrats said he was dragging his feet on handling the coronavirus.

Trump attacked the liberal media for "panicking the markets" following two straight days of heavy selling on Wall Street.

The president said he his working hard to respond to the fast-spreading COVID-19 virus, including considering appointing a coronavirus czar to lead the battle to contain the outbreak.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. is 57, including 36 who came from the infected Diamond Princess cruise ship.

The coronavirus was reportedly developed in a level 4 biohazard laboratory in Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak which began in December.

The virus uses ACE2 receptors to enter the human body. Some people have more ACE2 receptors and are more vulnerable to the infection than others. The risk for infection is low for those who have less ACE2 receptors.

Health experts ask people who have a mild case of coronavirus to stay home to prevent infecting others. There is no cure and no vaccine for the COVID-19 virus.

Photo may have been deleted

Photo: AFP/Getty Images

Doctors in Thailand have seen success in treating the deadly coronavirus with a powerful combination of flu and HIV drugs.

The news comes as the first coronavirus case in Massachusetts was confirmed in Boston on Friday, bringing the total number of cases in the U.S. to 8.

The global death toll has soared to 362 cases with over 17,388 confirmed infections reported worldwide.

Doctors treating a 70-year-old Chinese woman with flu and HIV drugs saw a vast improvement in her symptoms. The doctors from Rajavithi Hospital in Bangkok reported zero virus detected in her blood after 48 hours.

The drug treatment includes a mixture of anti-HIV drugs Loinavir and ritonavir, in combination with flu drug oseltamivir in large doses.

"This is not a cure, but the patient's condition has vastly improved. From testing positive for 10 days under our care, after applying this combination of medicine the test result became negative within 48 hours," Dr. Kriangska Atipornwanich told reporters.

"The outlook is good but we still have to do more study to determine that this can be a standard treatment."

The link between HIV and the coronavirus was first reported by Dr. Eric Ding, a visiting health scientist at the Harvard School of Health. permanently banned for publishing a post about Dr. Ding's theory linking HIV to the coronavirus. was supposedly banned for "doxing" a researcher at a level 4 laboratory in Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the virus.

The researcher, Dr. Peng Zhou, studied bats to determine why they are reservoirs for the world's deadliest pathogens yet they don't get sick. questioned whether Dr. Zhou developed a superbug from bat virus or whether one of his bats escaped from his lab, which is located about 4 miles from the fish market linked to the first reported coronavirus death in Wuhan.

Twitter has banned or suspended accounts for promoting the idea that a man-made virus bioweapon is the origin of the Wuhan coronavirus. But Dr. Ding's Twitter account is still active.

Stock photo: Getty Images

Wall Street's Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 600 points on Friday amid global coronavirus fears as the death toll jumped to 213 cases in China and nearly 10,000 infections in 18 countries.

The S&P 500 was down 58 points (-1.77%) as stocks tumbled at the close of trading on Friday. Panicked investors dumped shares as the virus outbreak threatened China's economy. China is the world's 2nd largest economy.

Currently there are 6 confirmed coronavirus cases and 168 cases under investigation in the United States. "We are facing an unprecedented health threat," said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta.

Stock photo: Getty Images

The new coronavirus is a SARS-type virus that causes inflammation and swelling in the tiny air sacs in the lungs, which makes it difficult to breathe. The cause of death is multiple internal organ failure.

The White House issued a federal mandatory quarantine of 14 days for 195 American evacuees from China. They are currently being held under quarantine at a military base in California after arriving on a chartered plane from Wuhan this week.

The White House also declared the coronavirus outbreak as public health emergency in the US.

President Trump issued an executive order that will block all foreign nationals from entering the US, except for the immediate family of US citizens or permanent residents. The travel ban will begin at 5 p.m. ET on Sunday.

All flights returning to the US from anywhere in China will be routed through seven airports, including JFK in NY, Chicago O'Hare International Airport, Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Photo by PHILIP FONG/AFP via Getty Images

China admits it was slow to react to the deadly coronavirus outbreak. The death toll has climbed to at least 213 amid claims that officials are hiding the true death toll by cremating bodies.

Crematorium employees are working overtime as it was revealed that bodies are being sent from hospitals without recording the actual numbers of dead in the official record.

More than 50 million people have been quarantined in and around Wuhan, where the first case of the virus was reported. The virus has spread around the world with nearly 10,000 people infected.

Photo by

The first cases were confirmed in Britain and six confirmed cases in the United States includes the first person-to-person transmission in Chicago.

President Trump announced the U.S. is ready to cope with the killer virus. But CDC officials worry that the official figures are "way too low."

The confirmed cases of infection exceeds 8,096 cases from SARS, a similar virus outbreak that killed 774 people in more than two dozen countries in 2002-03.

Photo may have been deleted

A Florida pastor sparked outrage when he claimed the deadly Wuhan coronavirus was sent by God to punish unbelievers and parents who transgender their minor children.

The death toll in China jumped to 132 with more than 6,000 confirmed coronavirus cases in 18 countries.

Pastor Rick Wiles founded the non-denominational Flowing Streams Church and he is the creator of the TruNews streaming channel, Newsweek reports.

According to Right Wing Watch, Wiles made the controversial comments during a podcast on January 27.

"Look at the scriptural rebellion that is in this country, the hatred of God," Wiles said. "Just vile, disgusting people in this country now, transgendering little children, perverting them. Look at the rapes, and the sexual immorality, and the filth on our TVs and our movies."

Wiles continued: "Folks, the Death Angel may be moving right now across the planet. This is the time to get right with God."

Wiles previously called former President Obama a "demon from Hell" and he warned that "there's gonna be violence" if President Donald Trump is removed from office.

The United States chartered a jet to fly 201 Americans from Wuhan to America. The plane landed in California on Wednesday after an emotional stopover in Alaska.

The passengers and crew were screened multiple times for symptoms of the virus during the flight, during the stopover in Anchorage, and when they landed at the March Air Reserve Base in California.

The passengers will be held in quarantine at the base for at least 72 hours before they are allowed to leave.

The flight was chartered by the U.S. State Department. More flights will return to Wuhan to transport up to 1,000 Americans from the coronavirus epicenter.