COVID-19 coronavirus

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Oklahoma health officials reported 55 new deaths due to the coronavirus on Thursday, for a total of 3,140 deaths since March. They are as follows:

Mairead Todd / KOSU

KOSU is covering the coronavirus in Oklahoma and how it's affecting our lives. Bookmark this page for the latest updates.

Quinton Chandler / StateImpact Oklahoma

Prisons are especially vulnerable to COVID-19 and the people confined inside them have little protection. Several federal prisoners in Oklahoma don't believe prison officials are consistently following guidelines to keep them safe from the virus.

The number of Americans filing for new state unemployment benefits dipped to 900,000 — down from the previous week but still high by historical standards, signaling the economic challenges facing the Biden administration.

The latest weekly data from the Labor Department was likely distorted somewhat by the ebb and flow of government relief programs, but the overall picture continues to show a struggling U.S. job market as President Biden takes office.

Back in April, COVID-19 hit the city of Manaus, Brazil, extremely hard. In fact, the outbreak there was arguably the worst in the world. One study, published in the journal Science, estimated that so many people were infected that the city could have reached herd immunity — that the outbreak there slowed down because up to 76% of the population had protection against the virus.

A growing number of grocers are adopting a novel approach in the race to get their workers vaccinated against COVID-19: providing pay incentives.

Aldi this week became the latest grocery chain to offer employees compensation for getting vaccinated, saying it would provide workers with two hours of pay for each of the two vaccine doses.

The grocer also promised workers receiving vaccines that they would not lose pay for missed hours from work and that it would help pay for the shots.

The devastating fall and winter wave of coronavirus infections that is causing so much misery across the U.S. appears to have finally peaked, according to several researchers who are closely tracking the virus.

While another surge remains possible, especially with new, more infectious variants on the horizon, the number of new daily infections in the current wave appears to have hit a high in the past week or two and has been steadily declining in most states since, the researchers say.

President Biden plans to sign a series of orders and directives on his second day in office to take charge of stopping the spread of the coronavirus, steps that his advisers say will start to boost testing, vaccinations, supplies and treatments.

Last year, as pandemic lockdowns put travel on hold, wealthy countries reduced their environmentally-harmful emissions in almost every sector of their economies.

There was one exception ... one big, road-hogging, gas-guzzling exception.

Provided

The Trump Administration released its final coronavirus task force document this week. It shows that Oklahoma remains in the top five ranking of two outbreak severity indicators.

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