COVID-19

How COVID-19 figures in to plans to restore Amtrak service in Mobile

May 21, 2020
Pixabay

An Alabama Public Radio news feature, which is part of APR effort to address the "news desert" along the state's Gulf coast. APR recruited and trained veteran print journalists in Mobile and Baldwin counties to join our news team to do radio stories from along the Gulf coast.

APR's Pat Duggins

An APR News Feature

Alabama Public Radio is partnering with the commercial TV newsroom at WVUA23 and the University of Alabama's Center for Public TV to operate an innovative joint COVID-19 journalism unit. This story is part of that collaboration.

Mobile residents reach out to people left homeless by COVID-19

May 14, 2020
Pixabay

An Alabama Public Radio news feature, which is part of APR effort to address the "news desert" along the state's Gulf coast. APR recruited and trained veteran print journalists in Mobile and Baldwin counties to join our news team to do radio stories from along the Gulf coast.

Alabama beach businesses work to recover visitor dollars lost to COVID-19

May 8, 2020
APR's Guy Busby

An Alabama Public Radio news feature, which is part of APR effort to address the "news desert" along the state's Gulf coast. APR recruited and trained veteran print journalists in Mobile and Baldwin counties to join our news team to do radio stories from along the Gulf coast.

Pixabay

An APR News Feature --Part of an innovative collaboration between Alabama Public Radio, the commercial newsroom at WVUA23-TV, and the University of Alabama's Center for Public Television.

The coronavirus is spreading inside Alabama’s prisons. So far, one prisoner has died and at least a dozen other inmates and guards have tested positive for the virus. Inmates and staff say they fear the situation could get much worse. That's leading some prison advocates to ask state lawmakers to consider early release and alternative detention to help stop the spread of infection. 

Note: The graphic in this story is no longer being updated. For more recent data, visit our new post on this topic.

To safely phase out social distancing measures, the U.S. needs more diagnostic testing for the coronavirus, experts say. But how much more?

Associated Press

 

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Many African Americans watching protests calling for easing restrictions meant to slow the spread of the new coronavirus see them as one more example of how their health and their rights just don’t seem to matter. 

Gulf Coast display
Alabama Tourism Dept

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic is expected to end years of record growth in Alabama's tourism revenues. 

The Alabama Tourism Department says 28 million visitors spent nearly $17 billion in the state in 2019. It was the third straight year that travel spending grew by more than $1 billion in the state.

APR's Guy Busby

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama’s number of coronavirus cases have continued to rise as some cities eased the restrictions that had been in place since the global crisis began. 

As of Saturday evening, more than 7,600 cases of COVID-19 had been reported in the state according to state health data. Alabama’s death toll from the virus was at least 288.

Mobile deals with being Alabama's new COVID-19 hotspot

May 4, 2020
Pixabay

An Alabama Public Radio news feature, which is part of APR effort to address the "news desert" along the state's Gulf coast. APR recruited and trained veteran print journalists in Mobile and Baldwin counties to join our news team to do radio stories from along the Gulf coast.

Mobile County is now Alabama’s COVID-19 hotspot. It’s the first county in the state to top 1,000 cases of the coronavirus. The county also leads in coronavirus deaths with 49 as of April 29.

Mindy Norton

Helping your pet keep its social distance from other animals (and people) may not be as difficult as you might think.  For example, it is possible to teach your cat to walk on a leash.  You need a lightweight leash and a cat harness (not a collar) - and patience!

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Pixabay

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabamians filed onto beaches and into previously shuttered retail stores as a state stay-home order expired. 

A state stay-home order expired at 5 p.m. Thursday and retail stores and beaches were allowed to open with occupancy limits.  Elective and non-emergency medical procedures are also being allowed to resume.

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — More than 400,000 Alabamians have filed unemployment claims during the past six weeks as businesses were ordered closed, or stopped work, during the coronavirus outbreak. 

The Alabama Department of Labor announced the latest numbers.  Nearly 75,000 new claims were filed last week. The record unemployment claims have been cited by politicians and groups eager to end closure orders.

Push to release inmates during COVID-19 pandemic

Apr 30, 2020
Pixabay

An APR News Feature --Part of an innovative collaboration between Alabama Public Radio, the commercial newsroom at WVUA23-TV, and the University of Alabama's Center for Public Television.

Concern is growing over if Alabama’s jails and prisons are prepared to battle the coronavirus pandemic. This comes as the first Alabama prisoner died from COVID-19 in recent weeks. Some advocates say changing guidelines for release in Alabama’s detention centers could help slow the spread of COVID-19.  

Jenny Carroll is a professor of law at The University of Alabama.

In Arizona, a woman behind bars at the Perryville women's prison reports hearing coughing echoing through the warehouse-style dorms all night.

In New Jersey, an immigrant detainee being held in the Essex County jail has been put on quarantine cleaning duty even though he's been sick. He fears he's spreading the coronavirus.

And at the Etowah County jail in Alabama, Karim Golding, an immigrant detainee who's fighting deportation to Jamaica, says he's been feeling short of breath and worries he got coronavirus from the guards or new detainees coming in and out.

Dmitry Teslya [Flickr]

A tiger is definitely not a house pet, but it shares many traits with its small domestic cousin, the house cat.  Unfortunately one thing they share is susceptibility to COVID-19.  But while they might catch it from humans, there is no evidence that a human can catch it from an infected cat.  

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MONTOGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A spokeswoman says Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey will work with the state health officer through the weekend to firm up a timetable to reopen state businesses. 

The state’s current stay-home order for the coronavirus outbreak sets to expire on April 30.  Ivey is expected to announce next week if it will continue or if some restrictions will be lifted.  

Feeding the body as well as the soul in Mobile during the COVID outbreak

Apr 24, 2020
APR's Lynn Oldshue

An Alabama Public Radio news feature, which is part of APR effort to address the "news desert" along the state's Gulf coast. APR recruited and trained veteran print journalists in Mobile and Baldwin counties to join our news team to do radio stories from along the Gulf coast.

istockphoto

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The Alabama prison system has reported its fourth case of COVID-19 in a state inmate.

The Department of Corrections announced the positive test on Wednesday in a news release.  

Pixabay

An APR News Feature --Part of an innovative collaboration between Alabama Public Radio, the commercial newsroom at WVUA23-TV, and the University of Alabama's Center for Public Television. 

Tens of thousands of Alabamians have lost their jobs in recent weeks from the coronavirus, which likely means many also lost their health insurance. There’s a push to expand Medicaid to help those without coverage, but some lawmakers have a different idea in mind.

Rama Jama's
WVUA 23

 

An anonymous person spent $1,200 for the construction workers at Bryant-Denny Stadium to eat at Rama Jama's.

Michael Hebron, the owner of Rama Jama’s, said he received a text first from an unknown number. He later spoke with the person who said they wanted to do this for those essential workers who are on the frontlines. And, it was definitely appreciated.

Druid City Garden Project
University of Alabama

 

With some grocery stores experiencing food shortages due to the coronavirus, fresh produce is in high demand. That means community gardens like Jeremiah's Garden in Tuscaloosa are more important now than ever. Since produce is so sought after, the non-profit garden is expanding.

Jeremiah’s Garden donates much of its produce to the West Alabama Food Bank, who distributes it to those who need it most.

protest
Associated Press

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey says she intends to keep a stay-home order in place through April, striking a measured approach as some Southern states push to quickly reopen. 

Ivey said Tuesday that she intends — for now — to keep a stay home order in place through April 30. State Health Officer Scott Harris said the state has not quite met a federal recommendation of 14 days of declining cases before proceeding to an additional phase of reopening.

APR's Pat Duggins

An Alabama Public Radio news feature, which is part of APR's effort to address the "news desert" along the state's Gulf coast. APR recruited and trained veteran print journalists in Mobile and Baldwin counties to join our news team to do radio stories from along the Gulf coast.

By now, you've likely heard the advice: If you suspect that you're sick with COVID-19, or live with someone who is showing symptoms of the disease caused by the coronavirus, be prepared to ride it out at home.

President Trump's plan to put a hold on U.S. funding for the World Health Organization during a global pandemic "is as dangerous as it sounds," says billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates. The Microsoft founder joined others defending the WHO, which they say is doing vital work to fight COVID-19.

The coronavirus has plunged the world into a crisis that's being compared to World War II and the Great Depression. It's the worst time possible, Gates and others say, to take money away from the U.N. health agency.

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey says people to not let their guard down on anti-coronavirus measures and was noncommittal on whether closures would have to extend through May. 

Ivey spoke at a news conference, saying Tuesday that she wants to reopen the state economy as soon as possible. But she suggested that may take a piecemeal approach when it does.

pandemic tornado recovery
Associated Press

 

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic is complicating relief work after storms killed more than 30 people across the South. 

Baptist volunteers aren’t holding the hands of people whose homes were wrecked by dozens of tornadoes. And the American Red Cross is lining up hotel rooms rather than mass shelters for homeless families to guard against spreading the virus. Mississippi Gov.

automotiveaddicts.com

 

Mercedes-Benz donated 30,000 face masks to healthcare and public safety workers in Tuscaloosa County on Thursday. The company’s plant in Vance began producing the masks and face shields to help others combat COVID-19.

Masks will go to Tuscaloosa Fire and Rescue, Northstar EMS and the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Tuscaloosa County probate judge Rob Robertson said he is appreciative of the Mercedes-Benz plant's effort to make critical PPE equipment for essential workers.

renegadehealth.com

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — More than 450 health care workers in Alabama have been infected with COVID-19 as the total cases in the state neared 3,000. 

The Alabama Department of Public Health said that 464 employees in hospitals and doctors’ offices have tested positive for COVID-19 since the outbreak began in Alabama. Infections in health care workers accounted for more than 15% of all cases in the state.  

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