Return to Transcripts main page


NYC Emergency Doctor talks about the Coronavirus Battle; British Prime Minister Hospitalized; Parents Remember Son Who Died of Coronavirus; Small Business Loan Rollout. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired April 6, 2020 - 06:30   ET



DR. ROB GORE, EMERGENCY PHYSICIAN, SUNY DOWNSTATE MEDICAL CENTER: I'm staying at an Airbnb. I've been here -- this is the third week staying in the same place and I'm probably going to be here for at least another four, maybe six weeks.

Me and one of the other emergency department physicians both are trying to keep our families safe. There's so much we don't know about the disease process itself and the last thing we want to do is bring it home to our loved ones. As you know, many people aren't symptomatic carriers and we're around so many patients who are suspected as having coronavirus or Covid-19 or do have Covid-19 and the last thing we want to do is have our loved ones affected.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Look, I hope that sinks in for people out there, that you're willingly, you know, separating yourself from your family for up to six, eight weeks maybe so that you can do your job to save lives.

You've been in disaster zones all over the world, including Haiti and other places. You say this is the culmination of all that work. How so?

GORE: I say the culmination because there's a level of intensity that happens when you're taking care of sick people. It's a whole different kind of intensity when everyone is fearful of the same kind of thing. And I think back to almost 10 years ago -- actually more than 10 years ago when that disaster (INAUDIBLE) took place in Haiti.

Like everyone was afraid not just of what they were experiencing, they (INAUDIBLE) or injuries, they were wondering, was it going to come back. And it's the same thing they're (INAUDIBLE) coronavirus. The only difference in this case is that coronavirus is almost this silent killer. In Haiti, you (INAUDIBLE) devastation. You saw the rubble. You saw the buildings that had collapsed. You saw the cars that were overturned.

But with coronavirus, you don't necessarily see that. The streets look clean. They look calm. It's almost as if every day is like a Sunday morning. But, you know, when you go into the emergency departments, you see all

the people that are being impacted. When you're standing outside of the ERs in the waiting rooms, you see some of the family members that are waiting to get word back from their loved ones. Only thing is, they can't come in there and so you talk (INAUDIBLE) Skype -- not through Skype, though FaceTime or some sort of (INAUDIBLE) so their loved ones to each other.

BERMAN: Hey, have you been using Hydroxychloroquine with your patients and how has it been working for you?

GORE: So I used it last night for the first time. It's been -- some of the internal medicine docs on the floors are starting to recommend that. But I -- it's too early for me to determine if there's going to be any major outcome with using it. Like with any drug, every time you use it, there can be some consequences. With Hydroxychloroquine, you can get nausea, vomiting, there can be issues with hair loss, also even cardiac dysrhythmias or abnormal heart rhythms.

BERMAN: So I do want to ask you one question. You were a CNN Hero in 2018 for the work you're doing to battle violence in your community. KAVI it's called. Kings Against Violence Initiative. Are you able to do that work at the same time? One of the things we're dealing with in this country is so many non-profits, wonderful causes, are being neglected now because of the need to focus exclusively on Covid-19.

Can you do both at once?

GORE: So I have an incredible team that allows me to be able to do both of the work. One thing that we know, any kind of disaster situation brings up a lot of triggers and traumas. And even though we don't see the same rates of interpersonal violence right now, at least coming into the emergency departments, it doesn't mean that people still aren't suffering.

A lot of people have PTSD, they have acute stress disorder, they've been hurting, they've been dealing with problems and tragedies and our KAVI team is still reaching out to them, both within our hospital- based program, and as well as our school-based initiatives.

BERMAN: Dr. Rob Gore, you prove again and again, you are a true hero. Thank you so much for the work you're doing and thanks for being with us.

GORE: Thank you for having me. Peace.

BERMAN: So British Prime Minister Boris Johnson hospitalized this morning as he battles coronavirus. The latest on his condition in a live report, next.



ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: This morning, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is in the hospital. He was admitted last night, ten days after announcing his coronavirus diagnosis.

CNN's Clarissa Ward is live in London at that hospital with the latest.

So what's his condition, Clarissa?


That's right, we're here at St. Thomas' Hospital where Prime Minister Boris Johnson is likely to be. I have to say that Downing Street and the hospital are not confirming that yet. But this is just five minutes away from 10 Downing Street. Over there at the exit, we can see an increased police presence.

We also see some photographers waiting presumably for the possibility that the prime minister may leave at some point today. But so far, Alisyn, we just don't know when that could be. All we've been told by Downing Street is that the prime minister was admitted here last night for precautionary tests because of, quote, persistent symptoms ten days after contracting the coronavirus.

As you probably know, Alisyn, when you continue to have those symptoms for ten days, that's when it starts to get worrying. But we are being told that there is no cause to worry yet. That the prime minister is still in charge and able to essentially run the country's business from the hospital here.

And, though, of course, many are concerned not just for the possibility that the prime minister may be making himself even more sick by continuing to try to go about government business while fighting this vicious, vicious virus, but also concerned potentially that he might not be able to bring all of the normal energy that he would in ordinary circumstances.

So people waiting and watching to see when and if the prime minister will leave the hospital today and when we might learn more about his condition.



CAMEROTA: OK. Clarissa, please keep us updated on what his health condition and everything else is.

Thank you very much.

Now to this story.

Thirty-one-year-old Riley Rumrill is the youngest patient to die in Massachusetts from coronavirus. We're going to speak with his parents about his life and the message that they have for the rest of us, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) CAMEROTA: Thirty-one-year-old Riley Rumrill is the youngest patient in Massachusetts to lose his life to coronavirus. Riley's parents say he was treated with an anti-malaria drug but his condition still declined. His parents have a message for everyone, to take this virus seriously.

And Diana and Bob Rumrill join us now.

Diana and Bob, we're so sorry for your loss. Riley just sounds like a wonderful kid.

So just start by telling us about him. What should we know?

BOB RUMRILL, SON DIED OF CORONAVIRUS: He was the light of the party. I mean he was carefree, always looking out for other people. He'd give -- the kind of guy that, you know, you always say give you the shirt off his back. That's what he would do.


He -- and one time actually found a homeless guy, bought him a tent. I mean he just was like that his whole life.

CAMEROTA: And so, Diana --

DIANA RUMRILL, SON DIED OF CORONAVIRUS: Yes, he was always smiling and laughing.

Go ahead.

CAMEROTA: Go ahead, Diana.

D. RUMRILL: He was always smiling and laughing and his smile was infectious. He just -- when he smiled, you smiled.

CAMEROTA: The pictures are great. I mean we see him with friends and siblings and he just -- it looks great.

And so have doctors given you any clue as to why this virus hit him so hard, though he was only 31 years old? Did he have underlying health conditions?

B. RUMRILL: Riley had kind of got bronchitis quite a bit. Never was on any asthmatic drugs. But bronchitis would affect him. Even as a child, I mean, he was the bronchial guy, you know.

Of course, he was always large. I mean he was big boned. A big kid. But generally healthy. He wasn't really in bad shape, although when he went to the hospital in Boston, of course, he had the fever and the coughing and, you know, shortness of breath. But I think that was all symptomatic of the virus, not necessarily his current, you know, health issues. I mean, I think his health was -- it was OK. It wasn't, you know.

D. RUMRILL: He was generally healthy, yes.


CAMEROTA: So on Saturday, March 21st, he went to Boston Medical Center with 104 degree fever. As you said, shortness of breath. And I know that you say that you believe that the doctors did try the anti- malaria treatment on him. Did you mean that Hydroxychloroquine? Do you know if he got that?

B. RUMRILL: I understand from my son, who was bedside with him, that also -- he also lives in Boston, told us that they -- they were giving him that drug. And we have -- because we didn't know. Of course the world didn't know much about what's going on.

We have people in California, my other son called out to California and asked them, what were they doing out there, and they agreed that they're doing the malaria drug.

So he was given the malaria drug. And I think some type of antibiotic to go with it. But as of -- you know, he goes in like Sunday morning, 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning. By Tuesday, 10:00, 11:00 maybe, because I talked to him about 9:00 just on texting, he was admitted, sedated and we never got to talk to him again.

D. RUMRILL: Yes, put on a ventilator.

B. RUMRILL: From Tuesday all the way through the following Sunday morning at 2:00 a.m. is when he actually passed away.

CAMEROTA: Gosh. We're so sorry. And were your -- were your other kids, sons, able to give him messages from you?

B. RUMRILL: Yes, they -- you know, you heard the cell phone, the iPhone. They actually dressed my oldest son up and he went into the room. He looked like an astronaut, but he went into the room and he was able to talk to Riley. Of course Riley couldn't talk back. And we were also able to talk through the iPhone so Riley could hear our voices and hoping that hearing us tell him to fight that maybe he could -- could beat this thing. Because he was still, you know, doing good all through Saturday. And that's when the turn of events got really dramatic.

CAMEROTA: That's what's so mysterious about this whole virus, just how quickly people can decline and even young people, as your son is evidence of.

And so, Diana, I know that it was important for you guys to come on and just tell other families about your story, to try to prevent the anguish that you're going through. So what is your message?

D. RUMRILL: Just stay at home. This is a silent killer. And you don't know if you have it. And if you have it, you could be OK, but it could be fatal. Just like our son. He went on Sunday and Tuesday he was on ventilator. They even put him on dialysis to take the strain off his body. And by next Sunday he was gone.

CAMEROTA: Bob, what's your message for everyone listening? B. RUMRILL: Well, we couldn't really be there with Riley. But we could

take his death and make him, if you want, a poster child for at least this Alabama area where we live and across the country where we've got friends and neighbor so that he's not just a number, he's a person with a face. And the fact that he had a message. And the message is, don't take undue risk. This thing could be infected by anybody you meet or talk with. Stay away from other people.


Stay home if you can. Wash your hands. And just pray to God that you're not going to be the next victim because a lot of people get sick. Some come out of it. But, in this case, he just never came out of it again. That's my message.

CAMEROTA: Yes. Well, thank you both for your generosity and your kindness and sharing that message with everybody else, even in this dark hour of your grief.

So, Diana and Bob Rumrill, we really appreciate you sharing a little bit of Riley with us.

Thank you both very much.

B. RUMRILL: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: And we hear your message.

NEW DAY will be right back.



DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It's been flawless so far. Far beyond our expectations. You should say, I hear you're doing well, but maybe -- I don't even hear of any glitch.


BERMAN: He's not listening then.

President Trump offering a rosy assessment of the loan program designed to help millions of struggling small businesses.


But the $350 billion program, it got off to a rocky start with several major lenders reporting technical glitches that have hampered their efforts to process applications.

Joining us now, CNN chief business correspondent Christine Romans and CNN anchor and correspondent Julia Chatterley.

Romans, this thing had problems when it rolled out on Friday. CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, $350

billion of essentially free money for small business if they keep their workforce. And they had about a week to put this all together. The banks weren't getting guidance until late Thursday night. So I think that glitches were inevitable. The president saying it was flawless is just -- is just not true. Even Larry Kudlow, his top economic adviser, is saying that there were some glitches.

But I'm hearing that they're hoping to have a lot of this ironed out, John, by the middle of this week so they can connect people with that money. This is a cornerstone of the main street bailout. This money really a cornerstone for the mail street bailout and desperately needed.


BERMAN: I'm sorry, OK, so, Julia, in terms of the small business loans, you've done some reporting on what they -- in terms of the amount of calls that were received on that Friday compared to normal.

JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean this was huge. To Christine's point, the banks, by their own admission, weren't ready for prime time. There were all sorts of differences between the amount of loans that the banks themselves could give and then the process of then giving that information to the Small Business Association that guarantees them.

Just to give you a sense of the numbers here, John, to your point, last year the Small Business Association gave out about 58,000 loans. Bank of America, from the data that I've seen, on Friday alone processed 99,000 loans or more to the tune of $25 billion. The problem then is giving all that information to the Small Business Association.

Now, there's good news on that front from what I'm hearing. Apparently Amazon web services has been working with them, the Small Business Association, since last week to try and build out the technology and the infrastructure, and they're saying that they believe the money will start flowing by Wednesday and Thursday this week.

So I think the message to people here is, don't worry so much about the first come first serve basis. That created a bit of a panic in the beginning. But the infrastructure here is being built out to try and allow some of these loans to be processed. And that's critical here.

BERMAN: Yes, patience is difficult, obviously, in this situation when you're on your last dollar or last dollars.

CHATTERLEY: Absolutely.

BERMAN: Christine Romans, we've had this $2 trillion rescue bill. Now there's discussion maybe there's more coming. What are you hearing?

ROMANS: Well, the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, on Friday said, look, she wants to take that $2 trillion -- that CARES act, use it as a blueprint. It was bipartisan. Find another chunk of money and get that passed. And the president was asked last night, does he think that more stimulus is coming. Here's what he said.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're talking about a different way of doing it. But I like the concept. I'd like the concept of infrastructure. Our country has to be rebuilt.

We have to rebuild our roads, and our schools, our bridges. We have to rebuild our country. So I like an infrastructure bill. I also like money going directly to people. It's not their fault that this happened.


ROMANS: And, overnight, Goldman Sachs issuing a report saying that more fiscal relief will come. It will have to be aid to states. It will have to be more unemployment benefits for longer. It will have to be more bailouts for small business. And maybe more direct payments to consumers.

They haven't received their check yet, their $1,200 check yet. The money hasn't even gone out the door yet and they're already talking about more, John.

BERMAN: Yes. And, Julia, this is to get through weeks and months. You know, I don't know if people are truly digesting the timeframe we might be talking about here.

CHATTERLEY: I don't think they are, to be honest. And there is recognition, clearly, that they're trying to do their best to get money out to people. But whether it's checks, we're talking weeks, it seems. There's been functionality problems with the direct deposit.

The Labor Department did sound Friday, as far as this extra $600 a week in unemployment benefits is concerned, that that money will be available to the individual states as of this week. But then the warning still comes again that it could be up to two or four weeks before the states then have the infrastructure again in place to start giving that money out to people.

Time is of the essence, whether it's on an individual basis or on a -- on a small business level too. The problem here is, for all the support that we're seeing, we don't have the digital infrastructure to be able to push this cash out, and it's desperate.

BERMAN: All right, Julia Chatterley, Christine Roman, thank you very, very much. Stay on this for us.

In the meantime, stark warnings from top health officials in the United States.

NEW DAY continues right now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is going to be the hardest and the saddest week of most Americans' lives.

MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK CITY: We believe we can get to Tuesday or Wednesday with the supplies we have.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If they had started, in February, building ventilators, we would not have the problems that we have today. And, frankly, very many fewer people would die.


GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D-NY): The number of beds doesn't really matter anymore. Ventilators, the staff, that's the problem.