On Wednesday, 145,835 new COVID-19 cases were registered in the U.S., a new single-day record, The Washington Post reports.
More than 64,000 coronavirus patients are hospitalized across the country, and nearly 3,000 are on ventilators. There has also been a sharp increase in the daily number of deaths, with at least 1,408 people dying on Wednesday, including a record number in Minnesota, Alabama, and Tennessee. “The cat’s already out of the bag,” Albert Ko, an infectious disease physician at the Yale School of Public Health, told the Post. “We’re having widespread transmission. It’s going to get worse, certainly, for the next month.”
Health experts warn that because of the holidays and colder temperatures, the number of cases will likely increase dramatically, as people ignore advice and gather in larger groups inside. “The worst of this crisis is playing out in the next six to eight weeks,” David Rubin, director of PolicyLab at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, told the Post. “The irony is, this is the time we most need our public leadership. Right now.” President Trump is not focusing on the coronavirus pandemic, instead spending his days tweeting baseless claims about widespread voter fraud.
Hospitals across the United States are preparing for a surge in patients, moving doctors to different department and hiring traveling nurses. Most are still dealing with not having enough personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, and that’s “a grave concern,” Janis Orlowski, chief health care officer at the Association of American Medical Colleges, told the Post. “When we first saw the pandemic start in the spring, it was on a rolling basis — some cases in Washington, others in New York. Now we’re seeing increases everywhere. We are seeing hospitals being strained across the country. What we’re seeing is not only burnout but a lot of complications having stress on medical professionals for an extended period of time.” Catherine Garcia