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US surpasses 17 million COVID-19 cases, has recorded 1 million new cases in less than a week

COVID-19 ventilator
Posted at 1:47 PM, Dec 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-17 13:47:00-05

The U.S. has now surpassed 17 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and has yet again recorded more than 1 million cases of the virus in less than a week, according to a database kept by Johns Hopkins University.

The U.S. reached the 16 million case threshold over the weekend. According to the COVID Tracking Project, the country is averaging more than 200,000 new cases of the virus every day, putting it on pace to record 1 million cases every five days.

Since Oct. 30, the U.S. has recorded more than 8 million cases of COVID-19 — a number that represents 47% of all cases recorded since the virus reached the U.S. in January.

The U.S. is currently in the midst of the most deadly stretch of the pandemic to date. The country surpassed 300,000 deaths linked to the virus on Monday. Since then, nearly 8,000 more people have died of the disease.

The COVID Tracking Project reports that the U.S. has averaged more than 2,500 deaths every for the last week — and that number will likely increase in the weeks to come.

The COVID Tracking Project also reports that record numbers of Americans are battling the virus in a hospital. The group says more than 113,000 people are currently hospitalized with the virus, leading many health care facilities — particularly those in rural areas — to reach maximum capacity levels.

Spikes in COVID-19 typically trail behind spikes in cases and hospitalizations, meaning death totals will likely only increase in the weeks to come.