Neurosurgeon Who Developed Lifesaving Method to Separate Conjoined Twins Dies from Coronavirus Complications

Dr. James T. Goodrich, the pediatric neurosurgeon who performed lifesaving surgery by separating a pair of conjoined twins in 2016, passed away on Monday from complications related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), according to the hospital where he worked.

In a statement from Montefiore Einstein, Goodrich was described as a doctor who “dedicated his life to saving children with complex neurological conditions” and a “pioneer in his field.”

Despite developing a world-renowned method to separate conjoined twins, Goodrich was a “humble and truly caring man” who “did not crave the limelight and was beloved by his colleagues and staff,” the hospital said.

“Dr. Goodrich was a beacon of our institution and he will be truly missed,” Dr. Philip O. Ozuah, the CEO of Montefiore Medicine, said in a statement. “His expertise and ability were second only to his kind heart and manner. Dr. Goodrich was admired by his Montefiore Medicine colleagues and adored by his patients and Montefiore Einstein will not be the same without his presence.”

Goodrich was the director of the division of pediatric neurosurgery at Montefiore Health System and the professor of clinical neurological surgery, pediatrics, plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

He served as a Marine in the Vietnam War prior to entering the medical profession.

“Jim was in many ways the heart and soul of our department – a master surgeon, a world-class educator, and a beloved colleague for all,” Dr. Emad Eskandar, chair of the department of neurosurgery at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, said in a statement. “His sudden loss is heart-breaking and his memory will always remain foremost in our thoughts.”

Goodrich first became well known when he successfully separated Carl and Clarence Aguirre, a pair of twins from the Philippines who were born joined at the top of their heads, in 2004.

In 2016, he led a team of 40 doctors in a 27-hour surgery to separate Anias and Jadon McDonald, American conjoined twins who shared brain tissues and blood vessels for the first 13 months of their lives.

Nicole McDonald, the mother of Anias and Jadon, called Goodrich’s death “a tragic loss” in a Facebook tribute on Monday.

“My heart is broken. You will forever be our hero. Every single time my children wrap their arms around my neck, I think of you. Every milestone they reach is because you believed in them as much as I did,” she wrote. “I’m not sure how to continue this journey without you. May you rest in peace, Dr. James Goodrich. We love you so much.”

In her post, she added that the coronavirus “took him so quickly” and urged people to take proper precautions from health officials to stay home and practice social distancing.

As of Monday afternoon, there have been at least 156,391 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States, with 2,897 deaths from coronavirus-related illness.

Goodrich is survived by his wife and three sisters.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. To help provide doctors and nurses on the front lines with life-saving medical resources, donate to Direct Relief here.

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Sean Penn Spotted Out in Malibu with a Mask and Hand Sanitizer Strapped Onto His Belt

Sean Penn is taking extra measures in protecting himself against the coronavirus.

The actor, 59, was photographed in Malibu over the weekend wearing a white mask strapped to his face while carrying a water bottle and cradling a sandwich in his arm as he left a local grocery store.

Strapped to his belt and peaking out from under his tan coat, a small bottle of hand sanitizer can be seen.

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and the influx of cases in the United States, experts are unanimous in their recommendation that sanitizing your hands — whether by washing them with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer — is the best way to avoid infection.

If done correctly, experts estimate that sanitizing your hands can reduce the rate of infection by respiratory illness infection by 16 to 21 percent. To ensure you’re properly ridding your hands of germs, it’s recommended to apply the product to the palm of one of your hands, and then rub the product all over both of your hands until it’s completely dry.

The Centers for Disease Control is also urging people to practice social distancing to slow down the spread of the virus. Hollywood is already being affected by the pandemic as Tom Hanks, Idris Elba and more have tested positive for COVID-19.

Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson, both 63, returned to Los Angeles last Friday after quarantining in Australia for two weeks following their coronavirus diagnoses.

On Sunday, actor Daniel Dae Kim was also spotted walking his dog in Hawaii after quarantining following his own coronavirus diagnosis.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. To help provide doctors and nurses on the front lines with life-saving medical resources, donate to Direct Relief here.

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New Rochelle Coronavirus 'Patient Zero' Is Home from Hospital and Recovering, Gov. Cuomo Says

Lawrence Garbuz, the 50-year-old lawyer who was dubbed the coronavirus “patient zero” in New Rochelle, New York, has been released from the hospital.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo shared the news during a briefing on the coronavirus outbreak Sunday.

“By the way, the patient zero … in Westchester, New Rochelle, who was very sick, he’s actually gone home,” Cuomo, 62, said. “He’s out of the hospital.”

Garbuz tested positive for COVID-19 on March 2, according to The New York Times. After over two weeks on a ventilator in a medically induced coma, Garbuz regained consciousness at a New York City hospital and was able to breathe on his own again.

After Garbuz’s diagnosis, Gov. Cuomo declared a “containment zone” a mile around Garbuz’s synagogue, Temple Young Israel, in order to help contain the spread.

However, the number of cases in the city spread, with many of the people having been in contact with Garbuz. His entire family also tested positive as well.

On March 18, Garbuz’s wife, Adina, shared on her Facebook page that he had finally woken up.

“Lawrence is awake and alert and seems to be on the road to full recovery,” Adina said. “He still has healing to do but is on a very good trajectory. I would have waited longer to share but since so many of you have been on this journey with me, my family and my community asking and waiting to hear, I felt I could not hold off any longer.”

“For us, a most torturous part was knowing he was waking up confused and disoriented and with no loved one by his side,” Adina added, saying that the situation was “heartbreaking.”

“But he has been brave and we were lucky that we could Facetime with him, which made an awful thing somewhat easier,” she said. “As saddened as I was, there was no one to blame but coronavirus.”

New York currently has at least 59,568 confirmed cases COVID-19 as of Monday morning, the most of any state in the country, while at least 965 people in the state have died from the virus.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.

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Dyson Designs Portable Ventilator in 10 Days to Fight Coronavirus: 'The Race Is Now On'

It took Dyson just 10 days to design an entirely new ventilator meant to help coronavirus patients — and now, the company is making 15,000 of them, Dyson said.

The British Dyson, best known for its vacuums and hair dryers, was asked by U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who himself has tested positive for coronavirus, for help amid a supply shortage.

The company’s billionaire founder James Dyson, 72, said in a letter to employees obtained by PEOPLE that the device, called CoVent, can be “manufactured quickly, efficiently and at volume,” and was specifically designed with coronavirus patients in mind.

The machines are bed-mounted and portable, and can also run from battery power in field-hospital situations, according to Fast Company.

“A ventilator supports a patient who is no longer able to maintain their own airways, but sadly there is currently a significant shortage, both in the U.K. and other countries around the world,” read the letter. “The core challenge was how to design and deliver a new, sophisticated medical product in volume and in an extremely short space of time. The race is now on to get it into production.”

The U.K. government has ordered 10,000 CoVents to help treat the country’s coronavirus patients, of which there were 11,658 as of Friday afternoon, according to The New York Times.

Dyson will donate an additional 5,000 units — 1,000 to the U.K. and 4,000 to other countries.

“Ventilators are a regulated product so Dyson and [The Technology Partnership] will be working with the [Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency] and the Government to ensure that the product and the manufacturing process is approved,” the letter read.

Meanwhile, other moguls have been doing their part as well, like Elon Musk, who said earlier this week he’d procured 1,225 ventilators from China and had them shipped to help meet hospital demands in an effort California Gov. Gavin Newsom called “heroic.”

Since the coronavirus outbreak, the World Health Organization has urged countries to “optimize the availability” of ventilators — which assists in breathing functions — as oxygen therapy “is the major treatment intervention for patients with severe COVID-19.”

Musk, 48, previously floated the idea of using his Tesla car factory to manufacture ventilators during the coronavirus outbreak, tweeting last week, “We will make ventilators if there is a shortage.”

According to the Society of Critical Care Medicine, it’s been projected that 960,000 coronavirus patients in the U.S. will require the use of a ventilator during the health crisis. However, the organization estimates there are only 200,000 units available nationally.

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Taylor Swift Donates $3,000 to Fans Affected by Coronavirus Crisis: 'I Was Just Speechless'

Taylor Swift is helping out fans with their bills amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-10) pandemic.

On Wednesday, the “Lover” singer, 30, donated to several fans who publicly expressed their financial struggles during the global health crisis. One of them was Samantha Jacobson, who received a $3,000 donation after writing on her Tumblr that she has “no job, no income, no way to pay my bills” after her workplace shut down over coronavirus concerns.

“I was in shock,” Jacobson — a 24-year-old cocktail server at a bar in Disney Springs in Orlando, Florida — tells PEOPLE of Swift’s surprise donation. “I was just speechless. I couldn’t believe someone I had looked up to and love and respected for so long has reached out with such generosity.”

According to Jacobson, Swift reached out to her on Twitter and offered to help alleviate some of her financial burdens.

“It’s all gonna go to bills right now,” says Jacobson, who tells PEOPLE that she’s been out of work for 10 days since the bar closed. “I applied for unemployment and I’m looking to pick up a temp job, so this is really helpful right now at a time of uncertainty.”

As a Swift fan for 13 years and counting, Jacobson says the entire experience has been one “magical and incredible ride.”

“I’ve gown up alongside her and I’m just so thankful that she loves us the way we love her,” she says. “She’s always checking up on us, and she just makes me feel so loved and so important.”

Another Twitter user named India, who previously tweeted that her “new job was cancelled for at least 6 months because of the virus,” also said she received $3,000 from the songstress. The fan shared screenshots of her exchange with Swift on the social media platform, in which the star said she’s like to donate to “help ease the strain.”

“I will literally never be able to repay her for the sheer gesture of it—Never-mind the actual amount which is 3 mnths of rent for me,” the fan tweeted. “It’s a wonderfully humble example of acknowledging that her small change can really impact someone else. I feel seen. Thanks, @taylorswift13.”

Previously, Swift urged fans to take precaution and practice social distancing as the highly contagious coronavirus continues to spread across the United States.

“I follow you online and I love you guys so much and need to express my concern that things aren’t being taken seriously enough right now. I’m seeing lots of get togethers and hangs and parties still happening,” wrote Swift on her Instagram Stories on March 16. “This is the time to cancel plans, actually truly isolate as much as you can, and don’t assume that because you don’t feel sick that you aren’t possibly passing something on to someone elderly or vulnerable to this. It’s a really scary time but we need to make social sacrifices right now.”

On Monday, Swift encouraged fans to focus on helping others during this trying time, writing on her Instagram Stories, “The World Health Organization and Feeding America are some of the organizations I’ve been donating to. If you have the ability to, please join me in donating during this crisis.”

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.

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Italy’s Coronavirus Cases Beginning to Decline After Two-Week Lockdown

New cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus are beginning to decline in Italy, two weeks after the country implemented a full lockdown.

For the last three days, the number of new cases and deaths have gone down, Italian health officials report. Between Sunday and Monday, the number of new cases declined by 997, from 6,557 to 5,560, according to the World Health Organization.

And in Lombardy, the northern region of Italy where the country’s outbreak began, the number of hospitalized patients is starting to come down, from 9,266 to 9,439, The New York Times reported.

“We can say that today is the first positive day,” Giulio Gallera, the leading health official in Lombardy, said Monday, according to the Times. “It’s not the moment to sing victory, but we finally see light at the end of the tunnel.”


But Italy has become the country most devastated by the virus. On Thursday, the nation officially surpassed China for the most deaths related to COVID-19, and as of Tuesday, they have nearly double the death toll — 6,077 in Italy, and 3,277 in China. While the number of deaths in Italy are starting to decrease — there were 146 less between Sunday and Monday — the number of deaths is still staggering, with 649 on Monday.

With overwhelmed hospitals and ventilators in short supply, some doctors have been forced to decide which patients are more likely to survive, and should get the needed breathing help.

One doctor in the city of Bergamo, in the Lombardy region, said that he thankfully has not yet had to choose.

“The important thing is not to arrive at that point,” he told the Times. “No one wants to decide who lives or dies like God.”

Italy implemented a full lockdown on March 9, stopping the country’s 16 million citizens from any travel through the country or from going outside. But much of the country was already dealing with widespread infections, particularly in northern Italy.

Still, with the number of new cases decreasing two weeks after the lockdown began, it’s a hopeful sign that Italy is turning a corner. And the timeline — a decrease in cases about two weeks after a lockdown — follows in line with what happened in China after they started a lockdown in early February, as Bloomberg writer Noah Smith pointed out on Twitter.

China says that they are not seeing any new domestic cases of COVID-19. Officials said Tuesday that they will be lifting the lockdown on Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, on April 8, over two months since it began.

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Florida Governor Mandates Anyone Traveling to State from New Jersey, New York Quarantine

Florida Gov. Ron Desantis issued an executive order on Monday mandating a 14-day self-quarantine for travelers coming to the state from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

“I hereby direct all persons whose point of departure originates from outside the State of Florida in an area with substantial community spread, to include the New York Tri-State Area (Connecticut, New Jersey and New York), and entering the State of Florida through airports to isolate or quarantine for a period of 14 days from the time of entry into the State of Florida or the duration of the person’s presence in the State of Florida, whichever is shorter,” the executive order states, according to CNN.

Desantis said that violating the quarantine order — which goes into effect on March 24 — would be a second-degree misdemeanor that could carry jail time, a fine or both.

“Today there’s over 190 direct flights from the New York City area to the state of Florida, and I would reckon, given the outbreak there, that every single flight has somebody on it who’s positive for Covid-19,” DeSantis said during a press conference on Monday, explaining his justification for the order.

New York State has become a “hot spot” for the virus, accounting for nearly half of all U.S. cases. As of Tuesday morning, March 24, there are 20,875 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New York alone. New Jersey jumped to second with 2,844 cases, and The New York Times reports that “dozens of new patients” are being identified in Connecticut each day.

Desantis said travelers from those states will be met by local or state law enforcement, as well as someone from the Department of Health, on board planes before being allowed to disembark.

“They’ll have to meet on the flight, there will be some information taken, and I think they’re going to do temperature checks, and they’re going to be told you have to self-quarantine,” the governor said.

As of Tuesday morning, Florida reports 1,222 confirmed cases of the virus and 16 deaths. The national death toll surged to 537, jumping more than 100 coronavirus-related deaths across the country in a single day for the first time since the outbreak, according to CNN.

Desantis has been facing pressure to enact stricter measures in Florida as videos circulated over the weekend and last week showing spring breakers flocking to the state’s beaches despite warnings to avoid large social gatherings.

The state leader decided he would not make a statewide mandate to close beaches, instead asking local municipalities to make that decision. Several have since shuttered their coasts.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.


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Rosie O'Donnell Raises $500,000 for Coronavirus Relief During Live-Stream Fundraiser

Rosie O’Donnell‘s coronavirus fundraiser was a success!

After bringing back her hit talk show, Rosie O’Donnell Show, for a one-night-only event on Sunday, O’Donnell revealed that the live-stream benefit raised an impressive $500,000.

“1/2 a million dollars for the actors fund – thank u everyone,” she tweeted after the show wrapped.

All proceeds from the show went to The Actors Fund in order to help amid the coronavirus pandemic, which has resulted in Broadway canceling all performances until April 13.

The Actors Fund provides services for people in the arts and entertainment community, including the Artists Health Insurance Resource Center, The Career Center, housing resources, addiction and recovery, HIV/AIDS and senior services, and counseling and emergency financial assistance, among others.

According to Variety, O’Donnell, 58, contributed $100,000 of her own money to the fund.

“Everybody who knows me knows that Broadway has been one of the brightest lights in my life since the time I was a little girl. It has also been the lifeblood of New York City for generation after generation. After all Broadway has given to the world, now — in this time of tremendous need — it’s our turn to give something back,” O’Donnell, a 12-time Emmy Award winner and Tony Award recipient, said in a statement to PEOPLE before the fundraiser. “There is no better way to support this community than via The Actors Fund. And, with a line-up like this, I dare you not to tune in.”

The evening featured performances and appearances from a number of A-list actors and entertainers — all from the comfort of their own homes! — including Sarah Jessica Parker, Darren Criss, Gloria Estefan, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, David Foster, Morgan Freeman, Neil Patrick Harris, Idina Menzel, Ben Platt, Billy Porter, Skylar Astin, Matthew Broderick, Tituss Burgess and Kristin Chenoweth.

As of Monday morning, there have been over 33,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the U.S. and 428 deaths, according to a New York Times database. With West Virginia reporting their first case last Tuesday evening, the virus has now spread to all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

Globally, Johns Hopkins University reports, there have been more than 350,000 total confirmed cases, including over 15,000 deaths and 100,182 total recovered patients.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.


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Pixar's Onward Gets Surprise Early Release on Digital Platforms Weeks After Opening in Theaters

Walt Disney Studios is offering audiences at home a treat to cheer them up through the coronavirus pandemic.

The studio announced it will be making its latest Pixar release Onward available to buy digitally beginning 5 p.m. PT/ 8 p.m. ET on Friday; and it will land on Disney+ April 3 — months ahead of a schedule for a movie that only hit theaters earlier this month. The decision comes as most of the country and the world is either quarantined or staying home to practice social distancing in hopes of curbing the COVID-19 outbreak.

“While we’re looking forward to audiences enjoying our films on the big screen again soon, given the current circumstances, we are pleased to release this fun, adventurous film to digital platforms early for audiences to enjoy from the comfort of their homes,” said Dan Scanlon (Director) and Kori Rae (Producer) in a statement.

This comes after Disney also made the decision to release Frozen II on Disney+ three months ahead on schedule, though that movie came out months earlier in November.

Onward stars Chris Pratt and Tom Holland as two brothers who go on a magical and harrowing adventure to cast a spell that would allow them spend one more day with their dad, who died when they were both too young to remember him now.

RELATED: Disney+ Releasing Frozen 2 Months Ahead of Schedule as a Surprise During ‘This Challenging Period’

Bob Chapek, Chief Executive Officer at The Walt Disney Company, gave a similar statement when announcing Frozen II‘s arrival on Disney+ earlier this month.

Frozen 2 has captivated audiences around the world through its powerful themes of perseverance and the importance of family, messages that are incredibly relevant during this time, and we are pleased to be able to share this heartwarming story early with our Disney+ subscribers to enjoy at home on any device,” Chapek said in a statement.

Disney has also been impacted by the pandemic in other ways, with its theme parks unprecedentedly closing for weeks and high-profile movies like Mulan and Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow all postponed indefinitely.

The COVID-19 virus has spread to every country in the world and counts over 245,000 cases worldwide with over 10,000 deaths as on Friday morning.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.

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Younger Patients Account for Nearly Half of Coronavirus Hospitalizations, New Study Finds

Researchers have been saying that younger adults who contract the new coronavirus will have a milder version of the respiratory illness, and that those over 65 are at a higher risk. While the elderly are still more likely to die from the virus, new research found that younger patients are also getting severely sickened, and account for nearly half of all hospitalizations.

In the first study of U.S. citizens with COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control analyzed data from 2,449 patients and found that of the 508 patients known to be hospitalized due to the disease, 38 percent were between 20 and 54 years old.

Additionally, nearly half — 48 percent — of patients who had to go to the intensive care unit (121 in total) were between 20 and 64 years old, which  belies the belief that severe cases are only found in senior citizens. While severe hospitalizations did skew older, with 36 percent being in those aged 45 to 64, the study found 12 percent occurred in 20- to 44-year-olds.

Of ICU admissions, 46 percent of people were aged 65-84. An additional 7 percent of admissions were people 85 and older.

“I think everyone should be paying attention to this,” said Dr. Stephen S. Morse, a professor of epidemiology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, told The New York Times. “It’s not just going to be the elderly. There will be people age 20 and up. They do have to be careful, even if they think that they’re young and healthy.”

Dr. William Haseltine, infectious disease expert and Chair and President of ACCESS Health International, shared a similar warning with PEOPLE on Monday.

“It can kill younger people, if they get a severe lung infection. Younger people should not think they’re immune,” he said.

Of the 2,449 patients studied, 44 are known to have died, and they were primarily older adults. 15 deaths were in people 85 and up, 20 were in adults 65 to 84 and the other 9 were in those aged 20 to 64.

The CDC emphasized that more research is needed, and that they did not have data on if any of the patients had preexisting conditions. Plus, they added, many of these patients are still sick. However, they said that the report emphasizes the need for social distancing.

“Social distancing is recommended for all ages to slow the spread of the virus, protect the health care system, and help protect vulnerable older adults,” the report states. “… Persons of all ages and communities can take actions to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect older adults.”

And, they said, “these preliminary data also demonstrate that severe illness leading to hospitalization, including I.C.U. admission and death, can occur in adults of any age with COVID-19.”

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.


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