National COVID-19 Update

March 24, 2020

Current CDC figures show a total of 44,183 confirmed and presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. in 54 states and U.S. territories, with 544 deaths. New York State leads the nation with more than 21,600 cases.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has launched a website with educational resources for coronavirus workers dealing with the spread of COVID-19. The NIH says its initial focus is to build a virtual safety training delivery platform in partnership with private sector e-learning companies with the capability to deliver synchronized just-in-time web-based training across the country in targeted high-risk industrial sectors. Additionally, a cadre of COVID-19 safety trainers and virtual safety advisors is being created to leverage the delivery of advanced training technology to frontline responders.

On March 22 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published guidance providing flexibility around and expanding the availability of ventilators and other respiratory devices to treat patients during the COVID-19 public health emergency. While the FDA expects providers to use FDA-cleared ventilators when possible, it will not object to limited modifications without premarket notification for and approval of those devices. Examples of flexibilities include: changes to the ventilator motor to allow an alternate supplier to meet the required design specifications, and changes to the material in the ventilator tubing to allow for more flexible material sourcing. More information can be found here.

The latest WHO situation report shows more than 332,000 COVID-19 cases globally, with over 14,500 deaths. The European Region now leads the world in cases and deaths, with more than 171,000 confirmed cases with over 8,700 deaths. The Western Pacific Region ranks second with more than 95,600 confirmed cases and more than 3,400 deaths.