Nepal | September 27, 2020

University of Washington forecasts 300,000 US COVID-19 deaths

Reuters
Share Now:

WASHINGTON: Nearly 300,000 Americans could be dead from COVID-19 by Dec. 1, University of Washington health experts forecast on Thursday, although they said 70,000 lives could be saved if people were scrupulous about wearing masks.

The prediction by the university’s widely cited Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation comes as top White House infectious disease advisors warned that major US cities could erupt as new hot spots if officials there were not vigilant with counter-measures.

“We’re seeing a rollercoaster in the United States. It appears that people are wearing masks and socially distancing more frequently as infections increase, then after a while as infections drop, people let their guard down,” Dr. Christopher Murray, director of the IHME said in announcing the university’s latest forecast.

The US death toll stands at over 159,000, the most of any country in the world, with 4.8 million known cases.

The IHME said infections were falling in former epicenters of Arizona, California, Florida, and Texas, but rising in Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Virginia. Those findings are consistent with Reuters tallies.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, a Republican, on Thursday said he had tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of a planned meeting with President Donald Trump, but had experienced no symptoms of the illness.

Tennessee and North Carolina reported record single-day increases in deaths on Thursday with 42 and 73, respectively.

‘TROUBLE AHEAD’

The US outbreak, once centered around densely populated New York City, has since infected communities from coast to coast. Experts believe that spread has been driven in part by summer vacation travel.

“This is a predictor of trouble ahead,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious diseases official, told CNN on Thursday.

Fauci was speaking after the White House coronavirus task force coordinator, Dr. Deborah Birx, identified new areas of concern during a telephone call with state and local officials on Wednesday.

Baltimore and Atlanta remain at a “very high level,” as well as Kansas City, Portland, Omaha and California’s Central Valley, Birx said on the call, a recording of which was obtained by the journalism nonprofit Center for Public Integrity.

White House data shows small increases in the percentage of positive tests in Chicago, Boston, Detroit and Washington.

On the positive side, medical professionals have a better understanding of what they are dealing with, said Dr. Khalilah Gates, a pulmonary and critical care specialist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago.

“We don’t know all of it, but it’s not the fear of the unknown anymore,” she told Reuters.

Trump has urged state and local authorities to re-open public schools for in-person learning and Fauci has said children should be sent back to class as soon as possible.

But many school districts nationwide, including two of the largest, Los Angeles and Chicago, have opted for online instruction.

In rural Mississippi’s Corinth school district, where schools opened two weeks ago, five COVID-19 infections forced some students and teachers into quarantine, Superintendent Edward Lee Childress said on Facebook Live.

The decision to reopen schools took into account the “inevitable moment” that COVID-19 would be detected and contact tracing plans triggered, Childress said.

“We’re going to have some more positive cases. We know it will happen,” he said.

Although the number of Americans seeking jobless benefits fell last week, a staggering 31.3 million people were receiving unemployment checks in mid-July. Other data on Thursday showed a 54% surge in job cuts announced by employers in July.

The State Department on Thursday lifted an advisory from March that U.S. citizens should avoid all international travel due to the pandemic. But American travelers are still restricted or banned in many parts of the world, including the European Union and Canada.


Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

1,207 new cases take Nepal’s coronavirus tally to 71,821 on Saturday

KATHMANDU: Nepal’s coronavirus tally moved to 71,821 as 1,207 new infections were reported in the last 24 hours. As many as 1,147 people that had earlier contracted Covid-19 tested negative for the infection as per the Ministry’s latest data. So far, 53,013 people have recovered from the dise Read More...

Eight Covid-19 fatalities registered on Saturday, death toll advances to 467

KATHMANDU: Eight more individuals diagnosed with coronavirus infection have succumbed to the disease, the Ministry of Health and Population confirmed at its regular media briefing on Saturday. All of those reported dead were males. Details of the deceased individuals 66-year-old male, Sap Read More...

Dhangadhi Sub-metropolis continues providing free food to returnees from India

DHANGADHI: Dhangadhi Sub-metropolitan City has been providing food and hygiene kits free of cost to Nepalis returning home from India via Trinagar border checkpoint since March. The Sub-metropolis has been providing food for Nepalis who are tired after a long journey from India since the time Read More...

Nepal COVID-19 Update: 1207 new cases, 1147 recoveries, eight fatalities recorded Saturday

KATHMANDU: Nepal’s Health Ministry, in its regular press briefing, shared the latest updates on coronavirus contagion from across the country, and government’s response to the health crisis. As of today, 978,204 tests through Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) method have been carried where Read More...

Bajura's Himali Rural Municipality opens rafting in Karnali River

BAJURA: Himali Rural Municipality of hilly Bajura district has started the operation of rafting in Karnali River targeting domestic and international tourists. According to ward chair Gobindra Bahadur Malla, the Rural Municipality has started operating rafting from Dhulachaur to Piluchaur for Read More...

Students demand justice for Bajhang rape victim in Kathmandu

KATHMANDU, SEPTEMBER 26 Students take to the streets on Saturday demanding justice for a 12-year-old girl whose dead body was found in a temple in Bajhang district on Thursday night. The minor was raped before being killed by the culprit/s. As per local police, investigation into the case in unde Read More...

Passengers adopt 'new normal' at Kathmandu airport amid coronavirus scare

KATHMANDU, SEPTEMBER 26 Passengers traveling to and from the capital are seen with personal protective gears at the domestic terminal of the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. Photos by Skanda Gautam for The Himalayan Times. Read More...

United earn dramatic win at Brighton with late Fernandes penalty

BRIGHTON: Manchester United beat Brighton & Hove Albion 3-2 away in the Premier League on Saturday after an incredible finale in which Bruno Fernandes struck the winning goal from the penalty spot in the 100th minute of the game. Fernandes's winner, which came after referee Chris Ka Read More...