CARROLLTON, Ala. (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic couldn't come at a worse time for rural communities across the U.S. that have lost their hospitals. 

Nearly 200 small-town hospitals have closed nationwide since 2005, often forcing residents to drive much farther for health care.

Last year was the worst yet for shutdowns, and officials say hundreds more rural hospitals are endangered by the pandemic. That's because moneymaking procedures like elective surgeries are being delayed and resources diverted because of the viral outbreak.

Pixabay

Prisoner rights advocates in Alabama are now pushing for action related to the outbreak of COVID-19.

They want the release of “low level, non-violent” inmates amid the Coronavirus pandemic. The concern is that social distancing is next to impossible inside a prison.

So far, there have been two cases of COVID-19 in Alabama’s jails or prison systems. According to Al.com, one officer and one inmate have tested positive for the virus in Mobile.

Alabama Republican Senator Cam Ward says the facilities are taking every precaution possible.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama lawmakers have adjourned the 2020 legislative session until late April as the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the state neared 1,000. 

Lawmakers met briefly in Montgomery in order to approve the break until April 28. Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh said lawmakers will likely pass “bare bones” budgets when they return because of the economic uncertainty.

twister
Associated Press

 

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — An apparent tornado has damaged an Alabama neighborhood where people were inside homes during the coronavirus quarantine.

Eufaula Mayor Jack Tibbs says only one minor injury was reported as a midday twister struck about 15 homes on Tuesday. He says he'd expected the toll to be worse because people were home during the viral outbreak, but it wasn't.

Scattered damage is being reported from Mississippi to Georgia, and more than 50,000 homes and businesses are without power.

UPDATED 3:04 PM ET

As reproductive rights activists warn that some patients seeking abortions are being turned away, a federal court has ruled that an order suspending abortions in Texas during the coronavirus pandemic can stand - at least for now.

When the NCAA shut down college sports earlier this month because of the coronavirus outbreak, the most dramatic cancellation was March Madness – the wildly popular men's and women's D1 basketball tournaments. But thousands of athletes in less prominent spring sports — baseball, lacrosse and golf, to name a few — had their seasons end too.

Now, they'll get another chance.

coronavirus
Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama's official death toll from the coronavirus has risen as the total number of confirmed cases neared 1,000. 

The state Department of Public Health reports the total COVID-19 infections in Alabama stood near 950 on Tuesday morning. The official death count rose to 13. However, the tally didn't include some of the seven deaths reported by the East Alabama Medical Center, a hospital in Opelika.

Alabama A&M
Alabama A&M on Facebook

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF-TV) — Alumni from an Alabama university have been calling on the state to stop the demolishing of old campus buildings by enforcing a law designed to protect Confederate statues. 

WAFF-TV reports Alabama A&M University alumni have asked the state's Attorney General to stop the university’s plans to destroy several historical campus buildings to make space for new facilities including a $50 million event center. Two buildings have already been destroyed while four remain to be demolished.

Noah Fortson/NPR

Watch the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic, including regular White House briefings.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — The former co-owner of an Alabama pharmacy has pleaded guilty in what prosecutors describe as a scheme involving improper billing for medication. 

Federal prosecutors say 55-year-old Jeffrey Black of Destin, Florida, pleaded guilty Friday to multiple felony counts. Black is a former co-owner of Northside Pharmacy in Haleyville. The company did business as Global Compounding Pharmacy.

Pages

LIVE CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

LATEST CORONAVIRUS NEWS

Live updates about COVID-19 in the state of Alabama

The Latest from APR

Speaking of Pets with Mindy Norton

Speaking of Pets w/ Mindy Norton is for people who care about pets & about humane treatment for animals in general, & who want to celebrate that special rel…

Don Noble's Book Reviews

Recently retired as English professor at The University of Alabama, Dr. Noble's specialties are Southern & American literature. He also hosts Bookmark on APR…