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8.29pm BST

Dr Anthony Fauci thanked America’s healthcare workers who “every single day put themselves at risk” during the pandemic, even as he acknowledged that PPE shortages had contributed to the deaths of more than 3,600 of them.

“We rightfully refer to these people without hyperbole – that they are true heroes and heroines,” he said in an exclusive interview with the Guardian. The deaths of so many health workers from Covid-19 are “a reflection of what healthcare workers have done historically, but putting themselves in harm’s way, by living up to the oath they take when they become physicians and nurses,” said Fauci.

Related: Fauci thanks US health workers for sacrifices but admits PPE shortages drove up death toll

8.11pm BST

An associate of Matt Gaetz is expected to strike a plea deal with federal prosecutors, which could be an ominous sign for the Republican congressman as he faces allegations of sex-trafficking.

The Washington Post has the details:

Joel Greenberg, the former tax collector for Seminole County, Fla., had first been charged last summer in a bare-bones indictment that prosecutors repeatedly superseded to add charges of sex trafficking of a minor, stealing from the tax office and even trying to use fraud to get covid-19 relief money while out on bond. In the course of the investigation into his conduct, people familiar with the matter have said, federal authorities came across evidence that Gaetz might have committed a crime and launched a separate investigation into him.

At a status conference in the case Thursday, federal prosecutor Roger Handberg told a judge he expected the case to end in a plea, though negotiations are ongoing. Fritz Scheller, an attorney for Greenberg, asked the judge to set a deadline of May 15 for the two sides to either reach a deal, or move toward a trial in the summer.

Related: Matt Gaetz claims ‘extortion’ amid reported investigation into relationship with teenage girl

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