The United States recorded at least 2,074 deaths on Friday, the largest increase in coronavirus deaths in the country since the start of the epidemic.
This brings the total number of deaths reported to 18,777. Over 501,600 people tested positive, according to a count of cases from Johns Hopkins University in the United States. As of Friday, 35,551 new cases were reported.
Bing COVID-19 tracker: latest figures by country and state
According to Dr. Chris Murray, director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, the country probably experienced a peak in its daily death toll, which created the model that the White House uses to measure the peak of coronavirus cases.
“We re-run the model, essentially, almost every night – and new returns from different states suggest different peaks in different states, but at the national level, we seem to be pretty much near the top,” he said.
His team model predicts that approximately 61,500 Americans will die from the virus in August – and that is if the country maintains measures of social distance until the end of May. If you factor in the states that could lift the rules by May 1, the numbers “don’t look good,” said Murray.
Health experts say that while encouraged by signs that these measures are having a positive impact, they warn that reopening the country too quickly could roll back the United States.
Despite positive signs, White House coronavirus coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx said Friday that the United States has not yet reached its peak in the cases.
“So every day we have to keep doing what we did yesterday, the week before and the week before, because that is what will ultimately lead us to the other side of the summit and to the other side, “she said. .
Birx said in late March that, based on models that take into account social distancing measures and home support orders, the death toll in the United States could be at least 100,000. If Americans don’t disregarded or followed the warnings, the number could reach 2.2 million, she said.
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Risk of rebound in July cases
Government projections obtained by the New York Times show that coronavirus infections and deaths could increase dramatically if social unrest and other measures are lifted after 30 days.
If home orders were lifted after a month, according to the government report, demand for ventilators would increase and the death toll in the United States could reach 200,000, the Times reported.
A spokesperson for Health and Social Services told CNN, “We do not comment on any alleged or disclosed document. CNN contacted the Department of Homeland Security for comments.
Murray told CNN on Friday evening that if the mitigation measures were lifted by May 1, cases could escalate into the summer.
“If we were to stop at the national level on May 1, we see (in the models) a return to almost where we are currently in July, therefore a rebound. Said Murray. “There is a very significant risk of rebound if we do not wait to the point where most transmissions are close to zero in each state. “
Meanwhile, local and state officials suppress mass gatherings, such as religious services, as the Easter weekend approaches.
In Kentucky, authorities will register the license plates of those attending all the rallies and hand over the information to the local health department, which will require the quarantine for 14 days, Governor Andy Beshear said.
He said the state has fewer than seven churches across the state, which “are still” considering having a service in person this weekend.
“My friends, we shouldn’t have to do this,” said the governor. “I think it is not a test of faith if you are going to service in person, it is a test of faith that you are willing to sacrifice to protect your neighbor, your neighbor, your Kentuckian companion and your next American . “
In Georgia, Governor Brian Kemp urged residents not to attend services in person and opt for online or on-call options.
President Donald Trump, who said two weeks ago that he hoped the country would reopen at Easter, said Friday that he would do nothing until he knew the country was in good shape again. health.
“I would love to open it. I haven’t determined anything, the facts will determine what I do. But we really want to open up the country, which is so important, ”he said.
The President said he was considering what has happened in other countries as a guide on how to reopen the United States, and said he would be willing to close the country a second time if cases escalated. again.
Trump said he would announce what he called “the opening of our country council” on Tuesday.
The opening can happen at different stages, Trump said. CNN previously reported that some models show that several states will not see their peak until later in April.
California Governor Gavin Newsom said that thanks to social distancing measures, the state has been able to smooth out its curve and expects to see its peak in May.
What else should you know
Several heads of state have said that social distancing measures have an effect. Connecticut hospitalizations are down. Arkansas also had the lowest number of hospitalizations compared to its neighboring states. The number of people affected in Ohio is lower than expected. And in California, hospitals have recorded an almost 2% drop in the number of ICU patients.
A study based on China’s epidemic published in the medical journal The Lancet said that blockages around the world should not be lifted until a vaccine is found.
The director of the United States’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gave a mixed response to the agency’s guidelines for hydroxychloroquine, the antimalarial that Trump called “game changer.” CDC director Robert R. Redfield said, “We don’t recommend it, but we don’t recommend it. “
Antibody tests – which could check whether a person already has the virus and could be protected from reinfection – may be available within a week, according to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s best infectious disease expert.
Data released this week shows that people of color have been disproportionately affected by the virus. In Louisiana, Illinois, Michigan and New Jersey, African-Americans represent a higher percentage of coronavirus victims.
More states are expecting their peak soon
According to the Murray team’s IHME model, states like New York and New Jersey may have surpassed their peaks this week, but others – including Florida and Texas – could see the worst of ‘by the end of the month.
New York and New Jersey currently account for about half of all U.S. deaths that have been reported, the CDC said on Friday. New York reported at least 7,887 deaths and New Jersey 1,932.
New York State has more cases of coronavirus than any country other than the United States. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said Friday that “this is a week where we have reached milestones that we could never have imagined: 5,000 New Yorkers have lost, far more than we have even lost on our worst day of 9/11 “.
The agency warned of various factors – including population density and screening capacity – that could explain why some regions have more cases and deaths than others, adding that the number of cases is also likely ” underestimated ”and that deaths are underreported.
In Mississippi, Governor Tate Reeves said he was “very concerned” and warned residents that “the peak is coming soon.” The state is under shelter there until April 20.