Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the U.S. - Statistics & Facts
COVID-19, short for the coronavirus disease 2019, has spread to almost every country and territory around the world, infecting millions of people and severely impacting the global economy. As of May 2, 2023, the number of COVID-19 cases worldwide had reached over 687 million. In addition, the number of deaths from COVID-19 was over 6.86 million. The United States is the country with the highest number of confirmed cases and deaths. The U.S. government’s overall response to the pandemic has been criticized, and state governments have also come under fire for enforcing rules that were not tough enough and lifting restrictions too early. However, the country’s vaccination rollout has been a success, with the U.S. one of the countries with the highest number of vaccinations administered worldwide.
The U.S. government’s response to COVID-19
As of April 26, 2023, the total number of COVID-19 cases in the United States had reached over 104.5 million, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Testing for the virus ran into some early problems when initial diagnostic kits from the CDC were found to be defective. However, the number of COVID-19 tests performed in the United States has reached 1.1 billion, which is the most of any country. Reacting to the rising number of cases at the start of 2020, many states encouraged self-isolation and working from home. To further prevent the spread of the virus, most states also closed bars and restaurants, canceled public events, and banned large gatherings. At the end of March 2020, it was estimated that over 90 percent of the U.S. population was under some kind of stay-at-home order.
In order to revive local economies, many states began lifting lockdown restrictions and reopening at the end of May 2020, despite warnings that it was still too early. The second wave of infection was brought under control in the summer, but the number of new daily COVID-19 cases surged in the second half of the year. The government has faced criticism, especially in the first year of the pandemic, with many pointing to contradictory statements from the White House regarding the severity of the outbreak and a general lack of leadership and guidance. A Statista survey that ran from March to May 2020 found that U.S. adults were consistently less satisfied with their government’s response to COVID-19 than their counterparts in Germany and the United Kingdom.
States have reported significant differences in rates of cases and deaths. The impact of COVID-19 on New York has been substantial, particularly during the early months of the pandemic. However, California, Texas, and Florida have now reported the highest number of cases in the United States. Moreover, COVID-19 case rates in the U.S. by state show that Rhode Island, Alaska, and Kentucky have been hit hardest. Death rates are highest in Arizona and Mississippi, although California has reported the highest number of total deaths.
The economic impact of COVID-19 in the U.S.
The impact of COVID-19 on the global economy has been significant, and the United States has not escaped the damage caused. The unemployment rate reached almost 15 percent in April 2020, although by mid-2022 it had dropped to almost pre-pandemic levels. To mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the U.S. economy, the government has enacted six major bills, totaling around 5.7 trillion U.S. dollars. The latest bill was signed into law by President Biden on March 11, 2021. The American Rescue Plan Act provided 1.9 trillion U.S. dollars in relief in various forms, including direct payments to individuals, direct aid to local and state governments, and an extension to unemployment benefits. A March 2021 survey found that a sizeable share of U.S. adults supported the economic relief package.
For further information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, please visit our dedicated Facts and Figures page.
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