US Hits Highest COVID-19 Death Toll and Hospitalization since May

"coronavirus" (CC BY 2.0) by sergio santos

The US recorded its highest daily COVID-19 death toll, surpassing the previous highest number by over 500 deaths.

On Wednesday, 3,157 deaths were recorded in the country, which became the highest daily coronavirus death since the start of the pandemic. This number is 20% higher than the previous highest number of 2,603 deaths recorded last April 15.

On the same day, as the highest death toll was recorded, hospitalizations due to COVID-19 infection broke 100,000 for the first time, and the daily cases exceeded 200,000.

The record-breaking tallies for both hospitalizations and new cases come as the CDC officially cut the quarantine period for people exposed to coronavirus from 14 days to between seven and 10 days. A leaked White House report revealed the US is ‘at historic risk’ for uncontrolled coronavirus transmission.

These rising figures come as the second wave of the coronavirus infection continues to surge throughout the country. Health officials also fear that gatherings during the holiday season would trigger the uptick in infections after Thanksgiving.

At a roundtable discussion with workers who were affected by the pandemic, Joe Biden made the dire prediction that there will be more than 250,000 Americans who could die in the next two months.

However, the bold statement given by the President-elect was not backed up by any evidence.

(Youtube) by Ruptly. 3 Dec 2020

The statement comes as Los Angeles residents were ordered to stay in their homes after a public order was issued on December 2. The public order banned all travel, including walking. It also ordered non-essential businesses to close and threatened to arrest anyone who would be caught breaking the new lockdown rules.

In a media call last Wednesday, Dr. Henry Walke, the CDC’s incident manager for Coronavirus response, told reporters that “the best thing for Americans to do during the holiday is to stay at home and not travel.”

Dr. Walke continued, “Cases are rising. Hospitalizations are increasing. Deaths are increasing. We need to try to bend the curve, stop this exponential increase.”

According to the COVID tracking project, of the people hospitalized, more than 19,000 are in ICUs, and nearly 7,000 on a ventilator.

Philip Landrigan, director of a global public health program at Boston College, said to the New York Times, “Any thinking person has to be worried. That we have so many hospitalizations speaks to the fact that we have done a very poor job of controlling this pandemic.”

Landrigan further added, “It is spreading very rapidly, and in many places, it is basically spreading out of control.”

The record-breaking numbers for both hospitalizations and new cases come as the CDC cut the quarantine period for people who were exposed to the virus from 14 days to between 7-10 days.

The President-elect who warned the country of the “dark winter” did not offer any statements to back up his tragic predictions. Biden said, “We’re likely to lose another 250,000 people dead between now and January.”

He further added, “You hear me? Because people aren’t paying attention.
You cannot be traveling during these holidays, as much as you want to.”

“Coronavirus” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Chad Davis

Despite several warnings, millions of Americans still travel. The number of people going through the Travel Security Administration checkpoints at the airports was at their highest rate since mid-March.

Last Tuesday, a CDC official also emphasized that foregoing travel plans and staying at home are the safest thing Americans could do during this holiday season.

Dr. Cindy Friedman, chief of the CDC’s travelers health branch, also stated that even a small number of people leaving their homes could lead to thousands of COVID-19 cases.

She further added, “Travel is a door-to-door experience that can spread the virus during the journey and into communities where travelers visit or live.”