The United States is on track to register a million new cases of COVID-19 in just two weeks – as more than 1,100 deaths are recorded each day and it reaches levels not seen in two months.
The number of infections across the country approached as many as four million cases on Thursday, and more than 143,000 Americans have since died of COVID-19.
In the past week, the average number of daily cases has risen to 66,000, and based on that trajectory, cases will increase by one million by the first week of August.
For the second time this week, daily deaths exceeded 1,000 on Wednesday, while new deaths reached 71,000.
Since the beginning of July, there have been on average more deaths in the United States since the hotspot states, including Florida, Texas, Arizona, and California, saw explosions in cases and hospitalizations.
The number of infections across the country approached as many as four million cases on Thursday, and more than 143,000 Americans have since died of COVID-19. For the second time this week, daily deaths exceeded 1,000 on Wednesday, while new deaths reached 71,000
Texas set a daily record on Wednesday for increases in deaths from COVID-19 and hospital admissions in the state.
The state, which reported 197 deaths and 10,893 hospitalizations, is one of the hardest hit by the reviving coronavirus.
Meanwhile, California surpassed New York on Wednesday with the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the country. It is partly due to robust testing in a state with more than twice the population of New York.
The total number of infections in the most populous US state now stands at 413,579 after adding a record high of 12,807 in new daily cases – the largest one-day increase since the pandemic started.
New York currently has 408,181 infections across the state.
New York has the most deaths of all U.S. states recorded by far: over 32,000, with California in fourth place with over 8,000 deaths.
If California were a country, it would rank fifth in the world for total coronavirus cases, behind only the United States, Brazil, India, and Russia.
The number of deaths has been exceeded twice in the United States this week, which has not been observed since May.
The number of coronavirus deaths is now rising in 23 states, and the country’s three most populous states, Florida, Texas and California, top the list of 44 states where the number of cases is increasing.
TEXAS DEATHS: Texas set a one-day record of 197 coronavirus deaths on Wednesday
TEXAS AFFAIRS: Texas registered 9,879 new cases on Wednesday, compared to a record 10,791 on July 15
CASES IN CALIFORNIA: California added a record high of 12,807 new daily cases on Wednesday – the largest one-day increase since the pandemic started
CALIFORNIA DEATHS: California deaths rose by 115 on Wednesday, bringing the total death toll to 7,870
The rising deaths and hospitalizations in Texas have forced a county to store bodies in refrigerated trucks and ask a top health official there to ask new people who stay at home.
In Hidalgo County, at the southernmost tip of the state on the U.S. border with Mexico, cases have risen 60 percent in the past week, doubling the number of deaths to more than 360.
“We need to get this virus, this stallion, lasso, the numbers back and take control of this thing,” said Hidalgo County Judge Richard Cortez.
“Because our hospitals are war zones, they are really struggling now.”
Cortez, a Democrat serving as the highest-ranking official in the province, issued a settlement order for the residents. That mandate put him at odds with Republican Governor Greg Abbott, who claims that local officials don’t have the authority to let the residents stay at home. The crematoriums in the Hidalgo area have a two-week waiting list, Cortez said, forcing the province to use five. refrigerated trucks, each of which can hold 50 containers.
Hidalgo’s senior medical officer, Dr. Ivan Melendez, partially blamed Abbott’s action to override local officials for the spike in coronavirus infections, which he said has disrupted the local medical system at every level.
‘Do I think that an order that lives at home is currently medically appropriate? Absolutely, “said Melendez.
Meanwhile, laboratories in the United States are succumbing to a wave of coronavirus testing, causing long processing delays that experts say undermine the pandemic response.
With the number of confirmed infections approaching 4 million and new cases emerging, the bottlenecks are causing problems for workers who are not at work waiting for results, while nursing homes struggle to keep the virus out and the laboratories themselves while dealing with a crushing workload.
Some labs take weeks to return the COVID-19 results, exacerbating fears that people without symptoms could spread the virus if they don’t isolate while waiting.
There has been an obsession with, “How many tests do we do per day?” said Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “The question is how many tests are done with results that come back in a day, immediately isolating the person being tested and immediately alerting their contacts.”
Frieden and other public health experts have called on states to disclose test lead times, calling it an essential measure of measuring progress against the virus.
Overall, deaths in the United States were up five percent in the week ending July 19, compared to the previous seven days, according to a Reuters analysis of the COVID Tracking Project data. Nineteen states have reported an increase in the number of deaths for at least two consecutive weeks
The US also reported more than 460,000 new cases of coronavirus last week, up nearly 15 percent from the previous week. Nationally, new COVID-19 cases have risen for seven weeks. Forty-three states reported more new cases of COVID-19 last week compared to the previous week, the analysis found