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Coronavirus roundup: Italian priest dies after giving up respirator for younger patient

A roundup of the latest international, national and local news on the coronavirus outbreak

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In this March 23, 2020, photo released by Xinhua News Agency, workers disinfect a subway train in preparation for the restoration of public transport in Wuhan, in central China’s Hubei province. China’s health ministry says Wuhan has now gone several consecutive days without a new infection, showing the effectiveness of draconian travel restrictions that are slowly being relaxed around the country.

Xinhua News Agency via Associated Press

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, the Deseret News will provide breaking national and international coronavirus news throughout the day. Bookmark this page and click back for updates:

Italian priest with COVID-19 gives up respirator for younger patient, dies

5:05 p.m.

Father Don Giuseppe Berardelli, the 72-year-old Archpriest of Casnigo in the Diocese of Bergamo in Northern Italy, has died after giving up his own respirator for another, younger coronavirus patient, CBS News reports. The Italian priest of 47 years died on March 15.

“He was a priest who listened to everyone, he knew how to listen, whoever turned to him knew that he could count on his help,” said Fiorano Mayor Clara Poli. Berardelli had once been a longtime pastor in Fiorano. The mayor said the late priest was always cheerful and brought joy to the community.

Berardelli’s parish had purchased the respirator for the priest, who had been already been ill from a separate respiratory condition for some time, according to CBS News.

Although there was no in-person funeral for the priest — to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus — citizens from Caserta, Italy, celebrated his sacrifice by applauding from their balconies the following day.

At least 50 Italian priests have died because of COVID-19, according to the BBC.

Coronavirus kills first U.S. child in LA

4:20 p.m.

America’s first death of a child caused by the coronavirus pandemic was announced by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Tuesday, The Washington Post reported.

The “individual was a youth under the age of 18,” the California county health department said in a statement.

Studies and statistics have shown that the virus is most deadly to people over 65 years old, but younger individuals are not immune to COVID-19.

Stock markets rise Tuesday as economic stimulus bill looms

1:15 p.m.

U.S. and global stock markets climbed Tuesday in response to possible congressional agreement on an economic stimulus package, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Climbing more than 1,400 points Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average picked up 7.5% while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite gained 6.1% and 5.1%. Foreign markets did as well Tuesday as Japan’s Nikkei rose by 7.13% and the Stoxx Europe 600 rallied by 8.4%.

Congressional leaders said a deal on the economic stimulus package could be made as early as late Tuesday.

The global pandemic has caused historic levels of market volatility, with the S&P 500 falling nearly 30% in recent weeks, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Stocks of industries most affected by the pandemic — like energy, airlines and restaurants — did particularly well on Tuesday.

India locks down, says prime minister

10:14 a.m.

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared that the country would be locked down at midnight Tuesday, The New York Times reported. All domestic flights had already been canceled on Monday. The national lockdown is expected to last for 21 days.

“The only option is social distancing, to remain away from each other,’’ Modi said. “There is no way out to escape from the coronavirus besides this.”

Approximately 1.3 billion people live in India.

The country will spend $2 billion on medical supplies, such as ventilators, and training for health care providers on how to fight the coronavirus, according to the prime minister.

 “If you can’t handle these 21 days, this country will go back 21 years,” said Modi.

China to open travel to Wuhan, for the healthy

9 a.m.

After a two-month lockdown of Wuhan, Chinese authorities will begin to open travel back to the city and surrounding province on April 8, the BBC reported. The travel ban for Hubei province — the seat of which is Wuhan — will be lifted on midnight Tuesday while the city remains locked down for two more weeks.

Travel is authorized for those determined to be healthy and who have a “green” code on a popular health app.

In China, more than 81,500 people have been confirmed to have the coronavirus, resulting in 3,281 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University and Medicine. Most of those deaths, 3,160, have occurred in the Hubei province.

The first new COVID-19 case in six days was reported in Wuhan on Tuesday. The government reported 78 news cases on mainland China in the last day. Seventy-four of those new cases, according to Chinese officials, came from travelers to China.