US records more than 7 million coronavirus cases – just days after passing 200,000 deaths – as infections surge in the Midwest
- On Friday, the US topped more than 7 million coronavirus cases, making up 20% of the world’s total
- California leads the country with more than 800,000 total infections, followed by Texas, Florida and New York
- Recently, there has been a surge in the Midwest in states such as Utah, Wisconsin, Missouri, North Dakota and South Dakota
- South Dakota is reporting a 166% increase in cases over the last four weeks compared to prior four weeks and Wisconsin reported record hospitalizations
- The news comes just three days after the US surpassed 200,000 deaths from COVID-19, the highest in the world
The number of coronavirus cases in the US has topped seven million – more than 20 percent of the world’s total – as Midwest states reported surges in infections.
The latest milestone comes just three days after the nation surpassed 200,000 COVID-19 fatalities, the highest toll from the virus than any country.
California leads the US with more than 800,000 total cases, followed by Texas, Florida and New York, respectively.
The highly infectious disease first struck New York City, and then the Sun Belt, but is now devastating communities in America’s heartland that have been slower to implement restrictions or mandate masks.
On Friday, the US topped more than 7 million coronavirus cases, making up 20% of the world’s total. Pictured: Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health nurses Crys Kuntz (left)and Sara Nelson confer inside the Bismarck Event Center in Bismarck, North Dakota, September 8
Recently, there has been a surge in the Midwest in states such as Utah, Wisconsin, Missouri, North Dakota and South Dakota. Pictured: Members of the medical staff treat a patient in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at the United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas, July 28
Every Midwestern state, except Ohio, reported more cases over the past four weeks compared with the prior four weeks, led by South Dakota and North Dakota.
South Dakota had the biggest percentage increase at 166 percent with 8,129 new cases over the last month compared to nearly 4,900 cases from the month prior.
According to the Rapid City Journal, the state set new records on cases, current hospitalizations and deaths on Thursday.
The state’s Department of Health reported 463 new cases and a new high of 194 current COVID-19 hospitalizations.
Eight deaths were reported on Thursday, which has only occurred on one other occasion, about 10 days ago.
South Dakota health secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon said it is too soon to know if the state has reached its peak.
Meanwhile Gov Kristi Noem tweeted on Tuesday that South Dakota is ‘in good shape’ with only five percent of ICU beds occupied by COVID-19 patients.
Meanwhile North Dakota’s new cases doubled to 8,752 as compared to 4,243 during the same time in August.
The Bismarck Tribune reported that active cases in the state have risen to an all-time high during the pandemic.
On Thursday, the state’s Department of Health reported 471 cases of COVID-19, bringing the states’s active case total to 3,483.
Currently, 26 patients are in ICU beds, making up almost 10 percent of North Dakota’s ICU capacity.
Meanwhile one-third of all North Dakota’s counties are classified as ‘moderate-risk’ with some ‘approaching high-risk.’
Despite the record, interim State Health Officer Paul Mariani broke with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines and rescinded an order requiring close contacts of known COVID-19 patients to quarantine for 14 days.
California leads the country with more than 800,000 total infections, followed by Texas, Florida and New York. Pictured: A woman swabs her mouth for a coronavirus test at a testing site in Los Angeles, California, September 4
Cases in North and South Dakota are linked to the 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, which was held in Deadwood, August 8
Many cases in those two states have been linked to the annual motorcycle rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, that annually attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors.
According to a Reuters analysis, positive cases rose in half of the 50 US states this month.
Ten states have reported a record one-day increase in COVID-19 cases in September, including Montana, South Dakota and Utah on Thursday.
PBS reported that Wisconsin has been averaging more than 2,000 cases per day over the last week but, just three weeks earlier, it was averaging 675.
On Thursday, the state revealed a record high 528 people were hospitalized due to coronavirus, the first time this figure has ever broken 500.
In Utah, daily infections have more than doubled while, in Missouri, health officials are recording more than 1,000 new cases every day, according to PBS.
New cases rose last week after falling for eight consecutive weeks. Health experts believe this spike was due to reopening schools and universities as well as parties over the recent Labor Day holiday.
A pre-peer review study by researchers from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Indiana University, the University of Washington and Davidson College said recent reopenings of college and university campuses could be linked to more than 3,000 additional cases of COVID-19 per day in the US in recent weeks.
The US has the highest number of confirmed cases in the world followed by India with 5.7 million cases and Brazil with 4.6 million infections.
Currently, the US is averaging 40,000 new infections per day with about 700 people dying daily.
Dr Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, has said he would like to see the number to fall below 10,000 per day before flu season starts in October.
Health officials and President Donald Trump have presented different views about the nation’s health crisis.
Trump, who is seeking re-election to a second term on November 3, early this month had claimed that the US was ’rounding the corner’ on the crisis. Fauci contradicted the claim the next day, saying the statistics were disturbing.
Meanwhile, numerous companies are racing to have a vaccine approved with 10 around the world in final Phase III large-scale clinical trials, testing in humans.