Coronavirus Vaccine Updates: 4.6M Americans vaccinated in 1 day, 39 states open eligibility

COVID-19 Live Updates, News and Information
NEW YORK (WABC) -- A record-breaking 4.6 million Americans were vaccinated in just one day over the weekend. Deaths from the virus are also dropping.

COVID hot spots from New York to Michigan are leaving health officials scrambling. In the past week alone, hospitalizations in the upper Midwest surged nearly 30%.

Michigan's positivity rate is the highest it has been since April of last year.

This week, the U.S. is anticipating a potentially devastating 85% drop in Johnson and Johnson vaccine supply.

There are fears, though rare, that the variant found in South Africa, could break through the Pfizer vaccine.

"There is evidence that it may happen," said Dr. Maldonado, Professor of Pediatrics at Stanford University.

Thirty-nine states have now expanded vaccine eligibility to everyone 16 years and older. Three more will do the same this week.

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Here are more of today's headlines:



Sidelined last year due to COVID, the Met Gala is returning -- twice
The Met Gala is coming back. Actually, twice. The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced Monday that the annual high-wattage celebration of both fashion and celebrity - canceled last year because of the pandemic - will return in person, first in September, then again in 2022 in its usual slot of the first Monday in May.

FEMA accepting applications for up to $9K for COVID-19 funeral expenses
Families who lost loved ones to COVID-19 can now get help with funeral expenses from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The agency launched on Monday a hotline -- 844-684-6333 -- to apply for up to $9,000 in assistance per burial, CNN reported.

Quarantunes marks 1st anniversary by lighting up Broadway theater in Times Square
The lights went back on in The New Amsterdam Theater in New York City Sunday evening to help those on Broadway who have been out of work for more than a year, as Richard and Demi Weitz capped a year spent raising a fortune for charity with their invitation-only Quarantunes series on Zoom.

New York graduation guidance
Gov. Cuomo released guidance for graduation ceremonies in New York starting May 1.

NYC opens Broadway COVID vaccination site with star power
The newest venue on Broadway is a vaccination site for the entertainment community. The facility that serves theater, movie and television workers in Times Square administered its first shots on Monday and opened with plenty of fanfare and star power.

Mayor Bill de Blasio was joined by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Health Commissioner Dave Chokshi, and Office of Media and Entertainment Commissioner Anne del Castillo to tour the Broadway COVID vaccine site.The "Hamilton" creator said this step to bring back Broadway will help performers and crews feel secure once again.

NY to allocate vaccines directly to colleges, universities

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the state would be providing a direct allocation of COVID vaccines to colleges and universities.

"Let's stamp this beast to death while we can," Cuomo said. "This is the moment of opportunity."

The state is aiming to get students vaccinated before the end of the school year before they return home for summer vacation. SUNY is taking the lead, but Governor Cuomo said he's encouraging all colleges to come forward and take part.

Luke Bryan tests positive for COVID-19, Paula Abdul to sub on 'American Idol'
The first live show of the 'American Idol' season will go on without one of the three celebrity judges.

Country superstar Luke Bryan is sidelined after testing positive for COVID-19. He tweeted that he is doing well, resting in quarantine at home, and looks forward to being back soon.

Man in hospital with COVID despite being fully vaccinated, wife says
Laura Eugene's husband is in the hospital fighting for his life. She says they got the Johnson & Johnson vaccine back on March 6.

Eugene says on April 1, her husband started to feel sick. Her husband tested positive for COVID on April 1, she says. Now he is in critical condition and is being treated for pneumonia as well.

NYC students opting-in
51,000 students have opted back into NYC public schools to finish out the school year. Students returning in all grades will return on April 26.

NYC gives out 5 million vaccines
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that New York City has administered 5 million doses of the COVID vaccine. The city also hit a record of 553,342 doses administered in one week.

Yonkers expands in-person learning
Hybrid learners in Yonkers will return to a four-day-a-week in-person model starting Monday. This is the state's fourth largest school district, with 25,000 students.

How to speak to someone who's hesitant to get COVID vaccine
As a pediatrician, Dr. Edith Bracho-Sanchez spends many of her days with nervous moms and dads listening to reasons why they're worried about their kids receiving vaccinations.

To navigate the complexity, she tells her families that she would never judge parents or accuse them of not loving their kids any less if they're afraid of vaccinations. She just asks that they talk about it.

She is now applying those hard-won experiences, in a more accelerated way, nudging families toward getting shots for their kids in how she talks with her own family members hesitant to get their COVID-19 shot.

When did you realize the COVID pandemic changed everything?
Many of us had a moment, most often occurring in March 2020, when we realized that COVID-19 had completely changed our lives forever. Even though we've managed to move forward and adapt to a new normal, that memory still sticks with us. Tell us: What was that moment to you?

Top 7 COVID vaccine questions answered
You had questions about COVID-19 vaccines and 7 On Your Side is getting you answers from doctors on the front line of the pandemic.

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