COVID-19 Update: Key Model Predicts US Death Toll Will Hit Nearly 300,000 by December; NY Schools Reopen; and More

World News:

At the close of another week, according to Worldometer there are over 19.3 million confirmed infections of COVID-19 around the world, and the virus has killed over 719,000 people since emerging in Wuhan, China roughly nine months ago.

Outside of the US, the nations with the most confirmed cases of COVID-19 are:

  • Brazil: 2,917,562 confirmed cases; 98,644 deaths.
  • India: 2,076,553 confirmed cases; 42,436 deaths.
  • Russia: 877,135 confirmed cases; 14,725 deaths.
  • South Africa: 538,184 confirmed cases; 9,604 deaths.
  • Mexico: 462,690 confirmed cases; 50,517 deaths.

WHO Warns of Lack of Testing in Africa

Testing in many African countries remains a “constant and concerning challenge,” according to World Health Organization Regional Director for Africa, Dr. Matshidiso Moeti. “At the same time, some countries have increased their testing per capita while maintaining a low positivity rate. Countries such as Mauritius, Rwanda, Cape Verde and Botswana.”

Dr. Moeti’s warning comes as Africa approaches 1 million confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus. She added that, “We do have countries where despite the fact that the governments did a relaxation of the measures, there was an initial increase in cases and several of these countries now we are starting to see a decline. The take-home is that we need to monitor this and ensure this decline continues and it’s sustained.”

Three-Year High Unemployment Rate in Brazil

The unemployment rate in Brazil is at 13.3% in the quarter ending in June – according to the Brazilian Institute for Geography and Statistics (IBGE). They report that 8.9 million people in Brazil have lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic – the steepest decline on record.

National News

Friday, August 7, 2020

Over 5 Million US Cases; Influential Model Projects 300,000 Deaths by December

As of Friday, August 7, there are now over 5 million confirmed infections of the novel coronavirus in the United States, with the virus having now killed over 163,000 Americans. That number is high enough, and now, it’s expected to grow appreciably by end of year. An influential model now predicts that the US death toll could hit 300,000 by December 1. However, 70,000 lives could be saved if Americans simply don masks. “This virus Is not just going to disappear or vanish,” said Dr. William Schaffner of Vanderbilt University told CNN. “The virus is with us, and we’re going to have to combat it, and the simple thing that we can all do is wear a mask. Please, everyone, wear your mask every day.”

The US states with the most number of confirmed cases are:

  • California: 541,494 confirmed cases; 10,028 deaths.
  • Florida: 510,389 confirmed cases; 7,747 deaths.
  • Texas: 489,731 confirmed cases; 8,116 deaths.
  • New York: 448,168 confirmed cases; 32,817 deaths.
  • Georgia: 204,895 confirmed cases; 4,026 deaths.

Gov. Cuomo Allows Nation’s Largest School District to Reopen

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo approved the reopening of New York’s 750 school districts for in-person learning this fall – but Gov. Cuomo says ultimately, the decision is up to the parents. “Parents have to be included and believe the plan makes sense. Teachers have to be included and believe the plan makes sense. They are the ultimate determination,” Cuomo said this week. “If a teacher doesn’t show up, you can’t open the class. If a parent doesn’t send their child there’s no child to educate.”


Thursday, August 6, 2020

US Infections Verge on 5 Million

As of Thursday, August 6, the United States is about to surpass 5 million confirmed cases (4,991,802 currently), according to Worldometer. The US death toll now stands at over 161,000.

The US states with the most cases of COVID-19 are:

  • California: 532,745 confirmed cases; 9,872 deaths.
  • Florida: 510,389 confirmed cases; 7,747 deaths.
  • Texas: 482,101 confirmed cases; 7,880 deaths.
  • New York: 447,379 confirmed cases; 32,811 deaths.
  • Georgia: 201,713 confirmed cases; 3,984 deaths.

Fauci Hopes to Mitigate the Threat of COVID-19

Dr. Anthony Fauci is hoping to control COVID-19 to the point where it’s no longer a pandemic-level threat. “We hope as a pandemic threat, that we are really on the cusp of seeing the end of it – as we do public health measures and a vaccine,” said Dr. Fauci at an Alliance for Health Policy webinar on Thursday.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

US Hits Another Grim Death Milestone

The United States death toll hit 160,000 today, as the nation faces the wrath of the novel virus, especially in states like California, Florida, and Texas, which now lead the nation in confirmed cases with 527,186 (CA), 502,739 (FL), and 472,691 (FL), respectively.

Outside of the top three, the nation’s with the most confirmed infections are:

  • New York: 446,691 confirmed cases; 32,801 deaths.
  • Georgia: 197,948 confirmed cases; 3,921 deaths.
  • New Jersey: 188,645 confirmed cases; 15,924 deaths.
  • Illinois: 185,993 confirmed cases; 7,742 deaths.
  • Arizona: 182,203 confirmed cases; 3,932 deaths.

Moderna Charge $32 to $37 a Dose for its Vaccine

Moderna will charge between $32 and $37 a dose for its experimental COVID-19 vaccine for “low volume” customers according to its CEO, per The Hill. The company will use a tiered pricing system, and will charge less for higher volume orders.

Stimulus Update

Negotiations for a second stimulus bill are still ongoing, but finally progress is being made, according to a CNN report. Top Democratic and White House negotiators are now reportedly working through disagreements, putting up offers, and making concessions. Both sides now agree that the deal will be completed by end of week.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

US Death Toll Nears 160,000

As of Tuesday, the United States verges on hitting yet another grim milestone in terms of fatalities – Worldometer reports 159,369 deaths from the novel coronavirus. The US has a world-leading 4.8 million confirmed infections. Cases of COVID-19 are now so widespread that White House coronavirus coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx to state that the country has now entered a “new phase” of the pandemic.

The US states with the most confirmed cases of COVID-19 are:

  • California: 522,030 confirmed cases; 9,507 deaths.
  • Florida: 497,330 confirmed cases; 7,402 deaths.
  • Texas: 461,266 confirmed cases; 7,455 deaths.
  • New York: 445,841 confirmed cases; 32,791 deaths.
  • Georgia: 195,435 confirmed cases; 3,842 deaths.

Florida ICUs Reaching Capacity

At least 45 hospitals in Florida have reached ICU capacity, according to data released by the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA).

NYC Reports Third Straight Day of No Deaths

On a positive note, New York City saw no COVID-19 deaths for the third consecutive day. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo reported that three people died across the state of New York on Monday.

Monday, August 3, 2020

US Death Toll Nears 160,000; Two More States Surpass NY in Confirmed Cases

On Monday, August 3, there are now 4.8 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States, and the death toll verges on 160,000 (currently 158,495). Over the weekend both Florida and Texas surpassed New York in confirmed infections with 491,884 and 454,364 cases, respectively. California remains the state with the most confirmed cases at 515,686. Outside of the top 4, the US states with the most number of confirmed coronavirus infections are:

  • Georgia: 193,177 confirmed cases; 3,840 deaths.
  • New Jersey: 188,048 confirmed cases; 15,913 deaths.
  • Illinois: 183,224 confirmed cases; 7,714 deaths.
  • Arizona: 179,497 confirmed cases; 3,779 deaths.
  • North Carolina: 126,532 confirmed cases; 1,999 deaths.

Update on Stimulus Negotiations

Bipartisan agreement on a second coronavirus stimulus package remains far apart. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said they expect to resume discussions on Monday. “We obviously need bipartisan support to get any deal done, the last two deals we got done 96-0 and 100-0. I think it’s pretty fair to say that we’re not going to do that again,” Mnuchin told reporters Sunday, per a CNN report.

The COVID-19 Pandemic: June/July Round-up

The COVID-19 Pandemic: May Round-up

The COVID-19 Pandemic: April Round-up