Here are things you need to know for Friday, August 7:
1. Governor urges flu shots as Texas reports 300 new deaths
Texas health officials warned Thursday that the approaching flu season threatens to further strain hospitals still dealing with thousands of coronavirus patients, and they urged the public to not wait on getting flu vaccinations this year.
Republican Gov. Greg Abbott made the appeal as Texas reported more than 300 confirmed new deaths from the coronavirus, pushing the total death toll to at least 7,800. Hundreds of new deaths have been added nearly every day for weeks in Texas, although state officials say declining hospitalizations are a sign of encouragement.
2. Pres. Trump bans dealings with Chinese owners of TikTok, WeChat, effective in 45 days
President Donald Trump on Thursday ordered an unspecified ban on “transactions” with the Chinese owners of the consumer apps TikTok and WeChat.
The twin executive orders — one for each app — take effect in 45 days.
Trump had threatened a deadline of Sept. 15 to “close down” TikTok unless Microsoft or “somebody else” bought it.
3. Customers that took misleading COVID-19 test at now-closed Houston area clinic upset with ‘scheme’
The doors at the Clinica Hispana in La Porte remained close after the State Attorney General’s Office filed a lawsuit against the business Wednesday. Officials said the man that runs the clinic is not a doctor, and the diagnosed COVID-19 tests he provided were actually antibody tests.
4. ‘Worst nightmare’: Laid-off workers endure loss of $600 aid
Around the country, across industries and occupations, millions of Americans thrown out of work because of the coronavirus are straining to afford the basics now that an extra $600 a week in federal unemployment benefits has expired.
Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are struggling to work out an agreement that would restore some federal jobless aid. A marathon meeting in the Capitol on Thursday night generated lots of recriminations but little progress on the top issues confronting negotiators. Even if they do reach a deal, the amount is likely to be less than $600
5. Texas to allow limited visitation in nursing homes with no active coronavirus cases
For the first time in nearly five months, visitors will be allowed in Texas nursing homes on a limited basis, state health officials announced Thursday evening, reversing a policy intended to keep the state’s most vulnerable populations safe from a pandemic that has proved especially deadly for the elderly.
Residents of Texas’ long-term care facilities have been separated from their family and friends for more than 140 days, since Gov. Greg Abbott shut down visitation in mid-March.
3 things to share
WORD OF THE DAY
Saltigrade [sal-ti-greyd, sawl-] (adjective) 1. moving by leaping; 2. belonging or pertaining to the family Salticidae, comprising the jumping spiders.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
Aug. 7, 1782: In Newburgh, New York, General George Washington, the commander in chief of the Continental Army, creates the Purple Heart. The “Badge for Military Merit” consisted of a purple, heart-shaped piece of silk, edged with a narrow binding of silver, with the word Merit stitched across the face in silver.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“What we observe is not nature itself, but nature exposed to our method of questioning.” - Werner Heisenberg
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