(CNN) — After weeks of rapid increases in infections and hospitalizations Due to covid-19, more state leaders have started asking residents to stay home. This is in the hope of helping slow the spread of the coronavirus, already rampant. The announcements also come as Texas became the first state in the United States to surpass 1 million cases.
Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak has asked people to commit to a voluntary plan he calls “Stay at Home 2.0” in the next two weeks in an effort to push for a “significant turn from current trends.” in the state.
“We have to get back to basics,” said the governor, encouraging companies to return to telecommuting as much as possible and asking residents to avoid hosting groups of people for dinners, parties and other gatherings.
The Wisconsin governor announced Tuesday that he signed a new order advising people to “stay home to save lives.”
“It is not safe to go out, it is not safe to invite others,” he said. Please cancel happy hours, dinners, sleepovers, and play dates at your house. And if a friend or family member invites you, offer to hang out virtually.
These governors join a chorus of other officials across the country who have moved to encourage more residents to stay home and limit socializing. A stay-at-home notice went into effect last week in Massachusetts, advising residents to stay home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. A stay-at-home notice also went into effect this Sunday in Rhode Island, where the governor warned last week that there would be an upcoming shutdown if the large house parties that were helping fuel the spread of covid-19 were not stopped.
Stay-at-home orders go hand in hand with the increase in covid-19 cases
The new steps and warnings come amid a dangerous moment for the country: Tuesday was the eighth consecutive day that the United States reported more than 100,000 new cases. Also Tuesday, the country reported a record number of hospitalized patients nationwide.
Public health officials have warned that unless Americans rely on public safety measures like face masks and social distancing, things could quickly get worse by 2021 when Joe Biden and Kamala Harris arrive at the White House.
“By the time the Biden-Harris administration takes over, this virus will have run rampant in communities across the United States,” Brown University emergency physician Dr. Megan Ranney said Sunday.
“We are heading for the worst of this pandemic,” Ranney said. “We’re about to see all these little epidemics across the country, crossed and mixed, and it will be a lot like pouring gasoline on a fire.”
Covid-19 cases on the rise and Texas surpasses 1 million infections
The United States has recorded more than 10.2 million infections since the start of the pandemic and more than 239,000 people have died in the country, according to Johns Hopkins University.
As the virus continues to run unabated in American communities, not a single state is trending in the right direction. And 44 states have reported at least 10% more new cases than the previous week, 11 of which reported an increase of at least 50%.
This week, Texas became the first US state to surpass 1 million known cases of Covid-19, according to data from Johns Hopkins. In El Paso, one of the most affected communities in the country, authorities have requested four more trailers to add to six mobile morgues already on the ground, as cases and hospitalizations increase.
“I’ve seen more deaths in the last three weeks than I’ve seen in a year,” a registered nurse told CNN affiliate KFOX. “I have performed compressions on more people in the last three weeks than in a year.”
California’s total number of infections is also slowly approaching a million. More than 18,000 Californians have died since the pandemic began and infections, positivity rates and hospitalizations are increasing in the state, the governor said.
“People are letting their guard down and taking off their masks,” California Governor Gavin Newsom said earlier this week. “They are starting to meet outside of their family groups.”
In Maryland, Governor Larry Hogan announced new measures, including stricter restrictions on restaurants, as the state reported its seventh consecutive day of more than 1,000 new COVID-19 cases and “the numbers continue to rise.”
“Since last week, most of our key metrics have deteriorated considerably,” Hogan said in a statement. “More people are becoming infected with the virus, more people are being hospitalized, more people are going to intensive care and more Maryland residents are dying.”
Oklahoma drops to 7% of UCI capacity
Across the country, many hospitals are already at their breaking point, with staff members overwhelmed and overworked as patients continue to grow.
More than 61,900 people were hospitalized with covid-19 in the United States, reported Tuesday the Covid Tracking Project, more people than ever.
In Illinois, most regions are seeing “much higher rates” of COVID-19 hospitalizations than in the spring, the governor said Tuesday.
“Across the state, we now have an average of more than 4,200 COVID-19 patients in the hospital. Our highest average in the spring was 4,822… In short, we are now just hundreds of our numbers for covid hospitalizations last spring, “said Governor JB Pritzker.
The Oklahoma Department of Health reported that the state has reduced the availability of ICU beds for adults to just 7%, with about 62 ICU beds available.
Hospitals across the state asked for help in “a couple of ways,” Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt said Tuesday.
“One was to reactivate a system called the Regional Medical Response System,” he said. “This system is used in tornadoes or major disasters. It is designed to transfer patients between hospitals. This ensures that Oklahomans are connected to a hospital bed as quickly as possible.
They also asked for more nurses, the governor said.
“We have directed the board of nursing to remove any red tape to allow nursing students and nurses licensed in other states to practice in the state of Oklahoma.”
The United States is about to begin distributing an antibody treatment
The United States also got some good news this week. Early data from Pfizer’s covid-19 vaccine shows that it is more than 90% effective, the drugmaker announced Monday.
Also on Monday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said it had issued an emergency use authorization for Eli Lilly and Co monoclonal antibody therapy to treat mild to moderate COVID-19 infections in adults and children. Treatment with a single antibody, called bamlanivimab, must be given in a hospital or other healthcare facility.
The distribution of the recently approved treatment will begin this week, the country, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said on Tuesday, adding that it will be provided free of charge.
“Getting new therapies like this for patients has the potential to save thousands of lives and significantly reduce the burden of disease on our health care system,” Azar said.
This is the first monoclonal antibody licensed for use in treating the virus. And it’s also an important first step in developing treatments that will help prevent people from being hospitalized with COVID-19, Fauci said Tuesday.
Treatment is “just one of several things that we are doing to look at the disease early and prevent people from being hospitalized,” he told MSNBC.
– CNN’s Andy Rose, Joe Sutton, Gisela Crespo, Jen Christensen, Sarah Moon, Leanna Faulk and Raja Razek contributed to this report.
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