U.S. Has One-Day Record of Almost 84,000 New Cases

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October 24, 2020 — The United States has passed another grim benchmark in the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Friday, more than 83,757 new coronavirus cases were reported, setting a one-day record and breaking the old record, set in mid-July, by 6,000 cases, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center.

One epidemiologist predicts case counts will keep going up.

“We easily will hit six-figure numbers in terms of the number of cases,” Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, told CNN. “And the deaths are going to go up precipitously in the next three to four weeks, following usually new cases by about two to three weeks.”

Since the pandemic began, almost 8.5 million coronavirus cases have been reported in the United States, with nearly 225,000 coronavirus-related deaths, Johns Hopkins says.

The rising numbers are not statistical blips.

The daily average for new coronavirus cases measured across seven days has been rising since mid-September. It’s now 63,268.

While expanded testing could explain some of the increase, the testing positivity rate is also going up. Johns Hopkins says the seven-day average for positive tests is 5.8% — up from 4.5% at the first of the month.

Daily deaths dropped earlier this year – but are now picking up.

The highest number of daily deaths was 2,752 on May, according to the Covid Tracking Project.

The death count was 916 on Friday.

But the seven-day average for daily deaths has been trending upward the last few weeks and is now 794, the Covid Tracking Project says.

Health experts have predicted a surge would occur as fall and winter hit the United States and more people stay inside. Students returning to campus and states lifting restrictions are also thought to have fueled the increases in cases.

The United States has the most cases and deaths in the world but is hardly alone is grappling with the pandemic.

Across the globe, more than 42.2 million cases have been reported, and more than 1.14 million people have died. Many European nations are experiencing second surges and putting restrictions on crowds and businesses back in place.

“We are at a critical juncture in this pandemic, particularly in the northern hemisphere,” World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a news conference Friday, according to The Wall Street Journal. “The next few months are going to be very tough and some countries are on a dangerous track.”

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