Ten states reported their highest single-day tallies of new Covid-19 infections Friday, and the country reported its highest one-day total since July, as experts say a dangerous fall surge of coronavirus infections is well underway.
© AMBER ARNOLD/AP
Nursing assistant Monica Brodsky, left, and nurse Taylor Mathisen work at a drive-thru testing site for COVID-19 in the parking lot at UW Health Administrative Office Building in Middleton, Wis., Monday, Oct. 5, 2020. A surge of coronavirus cases in Wisconsin and the Dakotas is forcing a scramble for hospital beds and raising political tensions, as the Upper Midwest and Plains emerge as one of the nation’s most troubling hotspots. (Amber Arnold/Wisconsin State Journal via AP)
“This really is a harrowing time, and people have to be careful,” epidemiologist Dr. Abdul El-Sayed told CNN on Saturday.
“When we saw this kind of transmission earlier in the pandemic, in March and April, the virus hadn’t seeded everywhere … This surge has the potential to be way worse than it was than either the spring or the summer,” El-Sayed, Detroit’s former health director, said.
The US reported more than 69,100 new Covid-19 infections Friday — the most in a single day since about 71,300 were reported July 29, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
Ten states Friday reported their highest one-day case counts: Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming, according to Johns Hopkins.
As for the entire country, cases are swinging up after a summer surge waned.
Daily US case averages had dipped to around 34,300 by September 12. But now, the country is averaging more than 55,000 new cases daily over the past week — up more than 60% since mid-September’s dip.
Covid-19 hospitalizations also are climbing nationwide. And they’ll likely be followed by a rise in daily coronavirus deaths, says Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health.
“This is a good moment for people to stop and ask themselves, ‘What can I do to try to be sure that we limit the further infections that otherwise seem to be looming in front of us as cold weather is kicking in and people are indoors, and those curves are going upward, in the wrong direction?’ ” Collins said Friday.
The country recently has averaged about 700 Covid-19 deaths a day, below the daily tolls above 1,000 from late July to mid-August.
But University of Washington researchers project more than 2,300 Americans could die daily by mid-January, and a total of more than 389,000 people could die from the virus in the US by February 1.
More than 218,000 people have died from Covid-19 nationwide since the start of the pandemic. Just over 8 million US cases have been reported.
‘We are in a new wave of rising positivity in Covid-19 cases’
More than 30 states — scattered across the US — have accumulated more new cases in the last week than they did in the previous week, according to data