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Good evening, here are the coronavirus updates you need to know tonight.

Top headlines:

  1. Canadian researchers to perform human trials of Chinese coronavirus vaccine, could seek Health Canada’s approval for emergency use as early as this fall
  2. Federal government planning stronger screening measures at Canada-U.S. border as both countries slowly reopen economies
  3. Eligible seniors to receive one-time, $500 payment from Ottawa to offset pandemic losses

In Canada, 71,157 cases have been reported, more than double the number from 23 days ago. There have also been at least 34,055 recoveries and 5,169 deaths. Health officials have administered 1,197,341 tests.

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Worldwide, 4,246,499 cases have been confirmed; with 1,485,454 recoveries and 290,710 deaths.

Sources: Canada data is compiled from government websites, Johns Hopkins and COVID-19 Canada Open Data Working Group; international data is from Johns Hopkins University.


Coronavirus explainers: Updates and essential resourcesCoronavirus in maps and chartsLockdown rules and reopening plans in each province


Photo of the day

Nurses gather holding placards with the names of their colleagues who died in their fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, during a protest marking International Nurses Day, in Brasilia on Tuesday. ( Eraldo Peres/AP)

Eraldo Peres/The Associated Press


Number of the day

5,000

Canada’s death toll surpassed 5,000 today. In total, at least 5,169 Canadians have died from coronavirus.

  • Quebec, the most-impacted province, has reported 3,131 deaths.
  • Ontario, the most populated province, has reported 1,725 deaths.
  • British Columbia, the third-most populated province, has reported 131 deaths.

Coronavirus in Canada

There are currently at least 3,030 hospitalized cases. Of those, 415 are in intensive care.

In Ottawa, the federal government announced a one-time tax-free measure for seniors of up to $500.

  • Seniors eligible for the Old Age Security pension, the monthly income program, will receive $300.
  • Seniors eligible for the Guaranteed Income Supplement, a program aimed at low-income seniors, will receive $200.
  • The New Horizons for Seniors, a program intended to reduce isolation among older Canadians, will be expanded by $20-million, the government also said today.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also said the government will support provinces in the coming months to develop solutions for the crisis in long-term care homes

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Also today: Stronger testing measures will be needed at the U.S-Canada border, ahead of an anticipated uptick of border crossings as restrictions in both countries begin to ease, Trudeau said. He did not indicate if the border will reopen when the current agreement expires May 21.

  • The Deputy Prime Minister said the governments in Washington and Ottawa are working on plans to deal with an increase in cross-border traffic.
  • Theresa Tam said extreme caution must be taken on the subject of reopening the border. Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer said Canada must watch what happens as restrictions ease, and look carefully at the state of coronavirus in the United States, before allowing cross-border travel.
  • Anthony Fauci, the U.S.’s leading infectious diseases expert, warned of the “really serious” consequences if states fail to adhere to federal guidelines on reopening the economy.
  • The United States has more than one million cases, the highest official case count worldwide, and more than 81,000 deaths.

And: Canadian researchers are joining an effort to develop Ad5-nCoV, a Chinese vaccine for coronavirus.

  • The vaccine is under joint development by a Chinese company and the country’s military.
  • Development of Ad5-nCoV has been among the most rapidly developed of vaccine candidates around the world.
  • The in-Canada trial will employ genetic technology from the National Research Council. The NRC will manufacture doses that can be administered in human tests and for emergency pandemic use.

If the tests succeed, the vaccine candidate could seek Health Canada’s approval for emergency use as early as this fall, said Roman Szumski, vice-president of life sciences for the NRC. It is already undergoing concurrent first- and second-phase human trials in China.

Finally: Civil rights advocates have asked a court for an unprecedented order to “depopulate” Canada’s federal prisons and to supervise efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in those prisons.


Coronavirus around the world

  • Chinese health authorities called for vigilance to be maintained against the coronavirus as new clusters have emerged in seven provinces, including Hubei, the original epicentre of the outbreak late last year.
  • As India entered its sixth week of lockdown, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the government will spend more than US$260-billion, the equivalent of nearly 10 per cent of the country’s GDP, on a coronavirus economic relief package.
  • Coronavirus has been detected for the first time in a UN-run civilian protection camp in South Sudan. As of mid-April more than 190,000 people were still sheltering in similar camps across the country.
  • Watch: Primary school students across France returned to school, with smaller class sizes and new safety measures.
  • With European Union governments focused on a trillion-euro plan to offset economic shock from the coronavirus pandemic, billions for defence in the EU 2021-2027 budget are at risk.

Coronavirus and business

Canada’s biggest mall owners collected just 15 per cent of May rent from tenants, data shows.

  • Rent collection in April was around 25 per cent.
  • Rent collection in June will likely hover around 15 per cent.

The most prominent enclosed malls are owned by Canadian pension funds’ real estate companies: Cadillac Fairview’s Eaton Centre in Toronto, Oxford Properties’ Yorkdale Shopping Centre in Toronto and Ivanhoé Cambridge’s Montreal Eaton Centre in Montreal.

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Those three companies, which together own about 50 enclosed malls in Canada, began offering rent deferrals in April. The three pension-fund real estate companies, which together operate more than 50 enclosed malls in Canada, all started offering rent deferrals to their hardest hit tenants in April.

Also today: Hyatt, the hotel chain, will lay off 1,300 employees, citing the “historic drop in travel demand and the expected slow pace of recovery.” The company had 55,000 employees in December, 2019, and last month pulled its earnings outlook for 2020.

And: Sales of hand sanitizer in Canada during the first week of March spiked 792 per cent when compared to the same period a year ago, according to figures released yesterday by Statistics Canada.


Question and answer

Question: Amid coronavirus, how do I teach my children gratitude?

Answer from Sarah Rosensweet: I love that you have alluded to a concept that is so helpful for us right now: both/and. We, as individuals and as a society, can both suffer because of the pandemic and benefit from it. We can also use this opportunity to look around us and see what we can do to help others who may be experiencing different challenges than we are.

To encourage your children to be caring of others, you can help them to understand that not all of us are having the same experiences through the pandemic. Ask questions such as: “What do you think we would do if we didn’t have a laptop? How would we do your school work or talk to grandma?” Or, “If we didn’t have any books and the library was closed, what would we do at bedtime? Or, “If you lived alone and couldn’t go out, what would you miss?”

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Talking about hardship without giving children an opportunity for action raises cynics. We want to ask questions that help our children put themselves in other’s shoes. Empathy creates caring. We can turn that caring into action.

We can help our children see the “both/and” of their own experience and think beyond it. We can help our children recognize that we are all in this together and we can help each other.

The Globe’s health columnist André Picard answered reader questions on social distancing and many additional topics.


An act of kindness

A concert played by cellist Andrea Nocerino of Cremona, Italy, for the Canadian emergency hospital.

Bev Kauffeldt​,/The Globe and Mail

A team of Canadian medics are leaving Italy as saviours and honorary citizens

The team of medics treated 282 patients since March 20, all but 25 of whom survived.

“The medics worked all the time and had no life beyond their hospital,” said a well-known local musician, Andrea Nocerino. “They made a great sacrifice for us. They were saviours, a gift to Cremona.”

Have you witnessed or performed acts of kindness in your neighbourhood? Share your stories, photos and videos and they might be included in The Globe and Mail. Email audience@globeandmail.com


Distractions

Sébastien (Inspector) Heins makes a call on behalf of The Ministry of Mundane Mysteries. (Photo by Dasha Peregoudova)

Dasha Peregoudova/Handout

For the theatre fan: Some online this week:


More Globe reporting and opinion

  • Konrad Yakabuski: “In its 180th year, La Maison Simons has managed to escape the same fate as Eaton’s, Simpsons and Woodward’s, which all ended up in the retailing graveyard after failing to adapt to changing consumer trends. Quebec City-based Simons – which operates 15 stores in Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia – will need to pull out all the stops to avoid that same cemetery now.” [For subscribers]
  • Gary Mason: “A guy walks into a bar. Actually, he walks into several different ones in Seoul, and those packed around him are oblivious to the fact that the 29-year-old male has COVID-19. This week, medical authorities in the city are in the process of attempting to track down around 1,500 people who were in the same nightclubs as the man.”
  • “Last month, Russian director Timur Bekmambetov announced that he was producing Tales from the Quarantine, an anthology film in which filmmakers and the public were invited to participate. And this week, Canadian film industry veteran Stacey Donen launched Greetings from Isolation, a website collecting dozens of short films tackling the current crisis.”
  • Boeing recorded zero orders for the second time this year and WestJet cancelled most flights until July.
  • Calgary’s zoo will return two pandas, Er Shun and Da Mao, to China as disruptions in supply chains have resulted in a bamboo shortage – 99 per cent of their diet. An adult panda consumes 40 kilograms of bamboo daily.

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