Pediatrics group says kids should wear masks at school; Canada reopens border to Americans: Live COVID-19 updates

The American Academy of Pediatrics issued recommendations Monday for the 2021-22 school year that include everyone older than age 2 wearing masks, regardless of vaccination status.

The academy also "strongly recommends" in-person learning and urges all who are eligible be vaccinated to protect against COVID-19. AAP said it amplifies the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations for building ventilation, testing, quarantining, cleaning and disinfection in the updated guidance.

Dr. Sonja O’Leary, chair of the AAP Council on School Health, said the pandemic has taken a "heartbreaking toll" on children.

“We need to prioritize getting children back into schools alongside their friends and their teachers -- and we all play a role in making sure it happens safely,” O’Leary said.

The announcement comes as new coronavirus cases are rising across the nation. Infections rose in all 50 states on Sunday for the fourth day in a row on a rolling seven-day average, an ominous run not seen since the spring 2020 surge.

The weekly rolling average for cases in the United States has nearly tripled in the last month. The pace of deaths also is up sharply – 24.7% from its low point two weeks ago. It also comes as Canada is planning to reopen its borders to vaccinated Americans and guidance from both the CDC and State Department advising against traveling to the United Kingdom due to the growth of the contagious Delta variant.

Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines don't cause magnetic reactions or contain tracking devices

Also in the news:

►U.S. stocks, which had been trading at record levels in recent days, fell sharply in early trading Monday amid worries the pandemic is worsening in hotspots around the world. Global stocks also swooned.

►U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Florida, said Monday he has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus even though he was fully vaccinated. He said he is experiencing mild, flu-like symptoms.

►A federal judge is allowing Indiana University to continue with its COVID-19 vaccine requirement for all students and employees. Eight IU students who sought to block the requirement.

►Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is urging people to work from home again. Dutch infection rates shot up shortly after the government relaxed almost all lockdown measures last month, including allowing nightclubs to reopen.

►Right-wing British commentator Katie Hopkins was deported from Australia on Monday after she boasted on social media that she planned to breach quarantine rules. Hopkins was to appear in a reality television program and was in a 14-day mandatory hotel quarantine in Sydney.

📈Today's numbers: The U.S. has had more than 34 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than 609,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: More than 190.5 million cases and 4 million deaths. More than 161.2 million Americans — 48.6% of the population – have been fully vaccinated, according to the CDC.

📘What we're reading: Cuba sent doctors abroad amid the pandemic. Now, its own COVID surge has sparked historic protests.

Keep refreshing this page for the latest news. Want more? Sign up for USA TODAY's Coronavirus Watch newsletter to receive updates directly to your inbox and join our Facebook group.

CDC, State Department advise against UK travel over COVID spike

U.S. citizens should avoid travel to the United Kingdom due to a spike in COVID cases, two government agencies said Monday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. State Department each raised the alert levels for the region to their highest levels.

The CDC raised the travel advisory for the U.K. to a level 4, meaning "avoid travel,'' citing "very high'' levels of COVID-19. The alert level had been at level 3, which advised travelers to be fully vaccinated before travel to the U.K. and recommended that unvaccinated travelers avoid nonessential travel. The U.K. travel alert has been at level 3 since May.

"Because of the current situation in the United Kingdom, even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants,'' the CDC said in its latest travel health notice update.

The United Kingdom, which encompasses England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, wasn't alone in being raised to level 4 by the CDC. The British Virgin Islands, Fiji, Indonesia and Zimbabwe also saw alert levels increase.

– Dawn Gilbertson

Canada to reopen borders to vaccinated Americans

Canada will reopen to fully vaccinated U.S. citizens and permanent residents starting Aug. 9.

"On August 9, 2021, at 12:01 a.m. EDT, fully vaccinated citizens and permanent residents of the United States (U.S.), currently residing in the U.S., will be permitted to enter Canada for discretionary (non-essential) travel," Canada's public health agency said in a statement.

A COVID-19 vaccination must be complete 14 days prior to entry.

Children under the age of 12 or who are not yet eligible for vaccination in the U.S. or unvaccinated dependent children will be allowed to enter the country with a fully vaccinated parent, step-parent, tutor or guardian who is eligible to enter Canada.

Entry to the country will be denied to U.S. travelers who are not fully vaccinated and all other foreign nationals.

Canada leads G20 countries in vaccination rates, with approximately 80% of eligible Canadians vaccinated with their first dose and over 50% of those eligible fully vaccinated.

Travelers who wish to enter must have a vaccine that is accepted by the government of Canada, which includes the Pfizer-BioNtech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD vaccines, and they must be able to show proof of vaccine in English or French or with a certified translation in addition to the original copy.

– Morgan Hines

DeSantis blames 'seasonal pattern' for virus spike

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said a “seasonal pattern” affecting mainly Sun Belt states is largely to blame for a recent spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. DeSantis, a Republican who opposes virus-related mandates, said he thinks berating or ridiculing people who have concerns about the vaccine or simply do not want it is "not the way to reach folks." But he said it is important for people to get vaccinated.

“If you’re vaccinated and you test positive but you don’t get sick, well the name of the game is to keep people out of the hospital,” DeSantis said. “Seventy-five percent of Floridians over the age of 50 have gotten shots, so we think that’s really, really positive.”

U.S Olympic gymnast tests positive

Kara Eaker, an alternate on the U.S. women's gymnastics team, has tested positive for COVID, coach Al Fong confirmed in a text message to USA TODAY Sports. Alternate Leanne Wong, who trains with Eaker, is also quarantining after being deemed a close contact, Fong said. Opening Ceremonies for the Games in Tokyo are set for Friday.

U.S. tennis star Coco Gauff shared Sunday that she tested positive for COVID-19, announcing that she would be withdrawing from the Tokyo Olympics just days before the start of the Games. Olympic organizers revealed Sunday that three residents in the Olympic Village, including two athletes, had tested positive for COVID-19 despite initially clearing arrival protocols.

ACLU wants clemency for inmates sent home during pandemic

A bipartisan group of criminal justice advocates are asking President Joe Biden to grant clemency and commute sentences of federal prisoners who were allowed to serve their sentences at home because of the pandemic but now face the possibility of going back to prison. Advocates have been pushing Biden to aggressively use his powers citing his campaign promise to cut the federal prison population.

"This is your opportunity to provide second chances to thousands of people who are already safely out of prison, reintegrating back to society, reconnecting with their loved ones, getting jobs and going back to school," stated the letter Monday from 20 advocacy groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union, Amnesty International and NAACP.

2 more Texas Democrats test positive

Two more Democratic Texas state lawmakers who fled to Washington, D.C., to stymie passage of a restrictive, GOP-backed voting law have tested positive for COVID-19 despite being vaccinated, according to Texas House Democratic Caucus leadership. That brings the total number to five.

A group of the lawmakers traveled by private plane to Washington, D.C., to lobby Congress to pass federal election reform. The lawmakers, however, drew some criticism after photos from the plane appeared to show them traveling without masks. Federal pandemic guidelines require masks to be worn on commercial flights, but not on private aircraft.

New mantra: Mask AND vax

More experts are calling for vaccinated people to mask up as COVID surges around the country. Almost 5,500 fully vaccinated people have been hospitalized or died from COVID-19, among the more than 160 million people who have been fully vaccinated, the CDC reports. "Instead of vax it OR mask it, the emerging data suggests CDC should be advising to vax it and mask it in areas with (rising) cases and positivity until we see numbers going back down again," former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams said on Twitter.

"If I'm in an area where I think there may be a lot of folks who are unvaccinated, out of an abundance of caution, I will wear my mask in indoor settings," current U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy told CNN.

'Spreading like wildfire': Surgeon general blasts misinformation

Biden administration public health officials took aim Sunday at social media platforms like Facebook for perceived inaction on stopping misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines. It comes two days after the president himself said falsehoods online are "killing people." Alarmed by rising coronavirus infections across the country and frustrated by persistent conspiracy theories about the pandemic, public health officials are more forcefully criticizing media and tech platforms they argue are endangering the public.

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, the federal government's top public health adviser, said Sunday that "misinformation is still spreading like wildfire in our country aided and abetted by technology platforms."

– Matthew Brown

Boris Johnson in quarantine on eve of Britain's lifting of restrictions

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will spend 10 days self-isolating after contact with a confirmed coronavirus case. The announcement by his office on Sunday reverses an earlier statement that, unlike most people, he would not face quarantine. Johnson met Friday with Health Secretary Sajid Javid, who later tested positive for COVID-19. Contacts of positive cases usually have to self-isolate for 10 days. Johnson contracted the disease in April 2020, spending several days in the hospital before fully recovering.

The British government still plans to lift all remaining legal restrictions on social contact, as well as other public health measures on Monday, despite the U.K. recording more than 50,000 new COVID-19 cases for the first time in six months and a dire warning from the British government’s top medical adviser.

Contributing: The Associated Press

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Pediatrics experts recommends kids wear masks in schools: COVID news