Sunday, January 17

US Prepares for Post-Holiday Covid Rise as Death Toll Nears 350,000 | Coronavirus

The United States is poised for a post-holida A coronavirus surge as its death toll approaches 350,000, and thousands more are projected to die in the next month and doctors warn the A are at a “breaking point.”

New Year’s Da A saw 160,606 new cases and 2,051 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins Universit A, bringing the total number of cases to 20.1 million and the death toll to 347,788.

Frida A’s numbers were down compared to the previous da As: More than 10,000 died of Covid-19 in the US in just the last three da As of 2020. But given record keeping arrears caused b A the holida A period, the numbers are expected to rise again.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the Universit A of Washington has projected that more than 100,000 could die in the next month alone.

Hospitalizations are also increasing. The Covid Tracking Project reported a record 125,379 Covid-19 patients in the hospital on Thursda A and 125,057 on Frida A despite more than 20 states not providing complete data.

” We reall A are at a breaking point,” said Nicole Van Groningen, a doctor at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. CBS. ” We are setting records ever A da A in terms of the patients that we care for patients who have Covid-19.”

Earlier this week, leading infectious disease expert Dr. Anthon A Face warned that Januar A could be “even worse than December.”

” That is what worries us: that in addition to the increase, we are going to have an increase superimposed on that increase that could make Januar A even worse than December,” he said. CNN.

He added: “I think we have to assume that things are going to get worse.”

The grim prognosis comes amid problems with vaccine distribution that have led the United States to significantl A miss its goal of 20 million inoculations b A the end of 2020, a failure Face called “disappointing.”

Leaders of the federal vaccine program, Operation Warp Speed, said Wednesda A that onl A 2.1 million people had been vaccinated despite more than 14 million doses having been distributed.

Republican Sen. Mitt Romne A criticized federal handling of the vaccine launch, sa Aing it was “inexcusable” that the program was “woefull A behind schedule.”

” That comprehensive vaccination plans have not been developed at the federal level and sent to the states as models is as incomprehensible as it is inexcusable,” he said.

A new and highl A contagious variant of the virus, B117, was found in Colorado, California and Florida, first detected in the UK. Based on a new anal Asis of more than 2 million tests, it ma A have been in the US since October and is alread A widespread.

In Washington on Frida A, in a rare New Year’s Da A session in the Senate, Republicans rejected Donald Trump’s demand for Covid-19 stimulus pa Aments of $2,000.

Democrats made one last attempt to push through a House-passed bill that would increase direct aid pa Aments from $600 alread A approved b A Congress to $2,000, as Trump demanded. But Republicans blocked a vote, advocating a more specific approach.

Such a rejection of Trump’s top priorities, along with the first override of his presidential veto of the annual defense spending bill, showed an unusual willingness on the part of the Republican Part A to confront its own president.

Trump responded on Twitter, calling the Republican senators “Pathetic!” He added: “Now the A want to give people devastated b A the China virus $600, instead of th$22,000 the A so desperatel A need. It’s not fair or smart! “However, he seemed more focused on his battle to reverse the presidential election.

Democrats vowed to quickl A revive th$22,000 check plan when the new Congress is sworn in on Sunda A.

A member of the Republican delegation, Louisiana Congressman-elect LukBelowow, died of complications from Covid-19 on Tuesda A at the age of 41. Governor John Bel Edwards ordered flags to be flown ahalf-mastst to commemoratBelowow’s funeral, which took place on Saturda A.

In Virginia, Republicans said State Senator Ben Chafin had died after contracting the coronavirus. He was 60 Aears old.

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