Dr. William Schaffner, professor of medicine in the division of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, joins ‘The Daily Briefing.’
U.S. state capitols across the country are beginning to feel the effects of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, as lawmakers begin to adapt to the new normal.
The Illinois and Delaware state legislatures and the Missouri Senate canceled sessions for next week, according to The Associated Press.
Several other state capitols have reportedly canceled tours and are advising the general public to steer clear altogether.
Members of the Maryland General Assembly said Thursday that they’re beginning to limit public testimony at committee hearings, to avoid person-to-person contact.
Lawmakers are instead asking that residents submit any comments or information they have electronically.
Leaders in Washington state, the region with the highest mortality rate in the U.S. from the disease thus far, are working to finish their budget, which includes increased funding for the coronavirus response, The AP reported.
In South Dakota, state Rep. Spencer Gosch was tested for the virus on Thursday, after complaints of feeling sick. His fellow lawmakers continued to work, however, in an effort to finish the state budget.
The moves come after various professional sports leagues have suspended their seasons after the illness was upgraded to a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday.
The impact is also being felt in the music and entertainment industry. The Coachella and the South by Southwest (SXSW) festivals have been postponed or canceled, while popular television shows have opted to continue filming episodes, without the inclusion of a live studio audience. Broadway theaters will shut until April, a move that followed New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s announcement on Thursday that the state was banning gatherings of 500 or more in New York City, effectively forcing the hand of producers who had previously said that Broadway would be “open for business” unless advised not to by the government, according to The AP.