The week that was: Caught between safety, restarting economy

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A couple wearing protective masks to protect against coronavirus walk past a mural reading 'Stay home', in the Shoreditch area, as the lockdown continues due to the coronavirus outbreak, in London, Saturday, April 25, 2020. (AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali)

NEW YORK – In Spain, children will be allowed to go outside again. In the U.S. state of Georgia, a handful of businesses opened their doors, performing manicures and haircuts in masks. Auto workers are in factories, but producing ventilators, not cars.

The world is taking steps to reopen. But as a debate over getting back to business raged with urgency, in often politicized tones, it became clear that reopening the world's economy will be far more complex than suddenly shutting it down.

Brazil's hospitals are warning they are overwhelmed. Doctors in an ICU unit in New York saved a patient's life, but have lost many more. A cemetery could not keep up. The toll grew deeper in nursing homes, where workers and the frail cannot escape the spread.

There is yearning for recovery, and both hope and fear about the consequences of returning to the world. Here is a guide to some of AP's best coverage this week across the globe:


President Donald Trump prompted immediate warnings from health officials when he suggested injecting disinfectants could be a way to combat the new coronavirus. The president later claimed he was being sarcastic, although the transcript of his remarks suggests otherwise. It was the latest in a series of statements throughout his presidency that fly in contrast to mainstream science.

As the planet grapples with what reopening looks like, a flood of new research suggests that far more people have had the new coronavirus without any symptoms. While that's good news, it also means it's impossible to know who around you may be contagious — and complicates decisions about returning to normal life. There are other questions and unknowns: Who's immune? Who's at risk? And what tests are available, and what do they actually measure?

Yet while scientists work to answer those questions, there is a bright spot. Coyotes, pumas and goats wander around cities. Skies everywhere are less polluted. Scientists have noticed Earth has become wilder and cleaner as millions of people hunker down during the pandemic.