COVID-19 cases are once again skyrocketing across the U.S., this time reaching record-highs of over 140,000 total cases a day. Many states are reporting record-highs in average daily cases, positivity rates and hospitalizations, and data shows how this outbreak wave may only get worse as the country approaches winter.
In new data from the COVID Tracking Project managed by The Atlantic, 45 states in the U.S. are seeing their 7-day average of new COVID-19 cases rise above 10 percent over the last week. Some Midwestern states like Nebraska, Minnesota and Iowa are seeing case increases above 40 percent and 50 percent, while Northeastern states like Vermont and Maine are both seeing increases above 70 percent over the last week. Just five states, Georgia, Montana, North Carolina, South Carolina and South Dakota, are seeing increases less than 10 percent.
Doctors and medical professionals in several states are sounding the alarm on an impending crisis within hospital systems. Many are highlighting how health care systems in their state only have a matter of weeks before hospital beds are full and ventilators are scarce, similar to the situation experienced in New York in early April. Between the end of March and beginning of June, deaths in New York soared by nearly 30,000 after hospitals were ill-equipped and ill-prepared to deal with the quick, enormous rush of coronavirus patients.
A repeat of these conditions across the country will almost inevitably see COVID-19 deaths increase dramatically over the next few months, especially if Americans fail to react quickly to the current surge in cases. With the holiday season arriving simultaneous to this new coronavirus wave, government and health officials across the country are pleading for people not to travel this Thanksgiving and continue socially distancing.