Coronavirus news update: Wednesday, March 18

Here are some of the top headlines for stories on coronavirus in Southern California and nationwide for Wednesday, March 18.

The number of coronavirus cases in Los Angeles County has risen to 192, continuing to show steep growth day-by-day.

Officials in Orange County were prompted to clarify a public health order that created widespread confusion among residents after it was issued. County health officer Nichole Quick issued the order which banned nearly all gatherings "of any number of people," not including families that live together. Officials later had to clarify that it was not a lockdown, and that residents should be sure to read the entire order. The order went into effect immediately and remains in place through March 31.

As the economy slows down in many sectors, grocery stores are hiring. Kroger, which owns Ralphs and Food4Less, says it is hiring 10,000 workers nationwide to keep up with demand as restaurants close and people stock up on supplies.

Calling himself a "wartime president," President Donald Trump signed an aid package that will provide paid sick leave to workers and provide free testing. The Trump administration is also looking to send relief checks to millions of Americans and speed up production of masks, ventilators and other equipment.

Two members of Congress, Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart of Miami and Ben McAdams of Utah, say they have tested positive for coronavirus. Diaz-Balart developed symptoms, including a fever and headache, on Saturday. He learned Wednesday that he had tested postive for the COVID-19 virus.

Watch ABC7 for comprehensive coverage of COVID-19. Click here to see TV listings. For all coronavirus stories, visit
Copyright © 2020 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.