US records second deadliest day with 3,400 COVID-19 deaths

US records second deadliest day with 3,400 COVID-19 deaths and a record 117k hospitalizations – as Biden says the ‘darkest days’ of the pandemic are still ahead

  • At least 3,401 Americans died on Tuesday, which is the second highest daily toll after December 16 when just 3,600 deaths were recorded 
  • The nationwide seven-day average for daily deaths now stands at 2,702, which is the highest ever recorded 
  • The number of people hospitalized with the virus has also hit a new record with 117,777 patients currently being treated across the country 
  • Meanwhile, 195,033 new infections were recorded on Tuesday, bringing the seven-day rolling average for new cases to 214,000
  • President-elect Joe Biden has warned the ‘darkest days’ of the pandemic are still ahead as cases, deaths and hospitalizations continue to rise 
  • It comes as researchers studying the new strain of coronavirus that is currently moving through the UK say it is likely it came to the US in November and that hundreds of Americans could already be infected
  • Around the country, outbreaks are being blamed on lack of social distancing and mask-wearing during Thanksgiving and officials fear an even worse surge if people gather for Christmas and New Year’s 

The United States has recorded its second deadliest day of the COVID-19 pandemic with 3,400 deaths and a record 117,000 people being treated in hospitals – as President-elect Joe Biden warns the ‘darkest days’ are still ahead.

At least 3,401 Americans died on Tuesday, which is the second highest daily toll after December 16 when just 3,600 deaths were recorded. 

It marks the fifth time daily deaths have surpassed the 3,000 mark amid the pandemic with all five occurring this month alone. 

The nationwide seven-day average for daily deaths now stands at 2,702, which is the highest ever recorded. 

The number of people hospitalized with the virus has also hit a new record with 117,777 patients currently being treated across the country. Hospitalizations have exceeded 100,000 every day this month. 

Meanwhile, 195,033 new infections were recorded on Tuesday, bringing the seven-day rolling average for new cases to 214,000. 

At least 3,401 Americans died on Tuesday, which is the second highest daily toll after December 16 when just 3,600 deaths were recorded. The nationwide seven-day average for daily deaths now stands at 2,702, which is the highest ever recorded

There were 195,033 new infections recorded on Tuesday, bringing the seven-day rolling average for new cases to 214,000

The rising number of deaths and hospitalizations, as well as the threat of a new UK strain of COVID that is thought to be already in the US, came as Biden warned the worst could still be yet to come. 

President-elect Joe Biden has warned the ‘darkest days’ of the pandemic are still ahead as cases, deaths and hospitalizations continue to rise

‘Here is the simple truth: Our darkest days in the battle against COVID are ahead of us, not behind us,’ Biden said. 

‘So we need to prepare ourselves, to steel our spines. 

‘As frustrating as it is to hear, it’s going to take patience, persistence and determination to beat this virus. There will be no time to waste in taking the steps we need to turn this crisis around.’ 

More than 322,000 Americans have now died of COVID-19 throughout the pandemic and there have been 18.2 million confirmed cases.

After rising rapidly in the fall, cases and hospitalizations now appear to be declining in the hard-hit Midwest. 

The national average for new infections, however, is not declining. The Covid Tracking Project says it’s a result of the current huge spike in California. 

California reported 32,659 newly confirmed cases on Tuesday and another 653 patients were admitted to hospitals, one of the biggest one-day hospitalization jumps. 

A state data models predict nearly 106,000 hospitalizations in a month if nothing changes. The current level is 17,843. 

The number of people hospitalized with the virus has also hit a new record with 117,777 patients currently being treated across the country. Hospitalizations have exceeded 100,000 every day this month. After rising rapidly in the fall, hospitalizations now appear to be declining in the hard-hit Midwest

California’s COVID-19 cases are now so high that they are keeping the United States average at a plateau despite the Midwest bringing the rest of the country down, Covid Tracking Project data shows

Hospitalizations are rapidly rising in Texas, Florida, and Georgia, The Covid Tracking Project reports. California reported 32,659 newly confirmed cases Tuesday and another 653 patients were admitted to hospitals, one of the biggest one-day hospitalization jumps. A state data models predict nearly 106,000 hospitalizations in a month if nothing changes. The current level is 17,843

The state’s health care system is in the throes of a COVID-19 crisis stemming from ill-advised Thanksgiving gatherings, top executives from the state’s largest hospital systems said. 

They put out a ‘desperate call’ for residents to avoid a Christmas repeat, which they said would overwhelm the state’s medical system. 

Hospitalizations are also rapidly rising in Texas, Florida, and Georgia, according to the Covid Tracking Project. 

Despite the decline in cases across the Midwestern states, South Dakota currently remains the worst affected in terms of deaths per capita. 

The state, on average, has recorded two deaths per 100,000 people in the last seven days, according to CDC data. 

Kansas follows with 1.7 deaths per capita and then Rhode Island with 1.6 deaths. 

The worst affected state for cases per capita is now Tennessee with an average of 137 cases per 100,000 residents in the last seven days. 

It is followed by Oklahoma with 115 cases per capita and then California with 111 cases per 100,000.  

It comes as researchers studying the new strain of coronavirus that is currently moving through the UK say it is likely it came to the US in November and that hundreds of Americans could already be infected. 

CALIFORNIA: A mobile field hospital is set up at UCI Medical Center in Orange, California this week as hospitals run out of space

ARIZONA: Refrigerated trucks are currently being used at Arizona’s Banner Health in Phoenix as the state battles a surge in COVID-19

‘You really need to assume it ‘s here already. It’s certainly not the dominant strain but I would not be surprised at all if it’s already here,’ Dr Anthony Fauci, who received his COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday, told Good Morning America. 

Assistant Secretary for Health Admiral Brett Giroir said: ‘It could be in the United States, and we might not have yet detected it.’ 

The CDC said in a scientific brief posted on its website on Tuesday that the UK COVID strain hasn’t yet been identified through sequencing efforts in the US. 

The UK coronavirus variant has not been identified through sequencing efforts in the United States, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a scientific brief posted on its website Tuesday. 

Only about 51,000 of the US’ 17 million cases have been sequenced so far, the agency warned. 

‘Given the small fraction of US infections that have been sequenced, the variant could already be in the United States without having been detected,’ the CDC said. 

Around the country, outbreaks are being blamed on lack of social distancing and mask-wearing during Thanksgiving and officials fear an even worse surge if people gather for Christmas and New Year’s. 

California’s doctors and health officials are begging people to avoid gathering outside of their immediate families as they warned the health care system is buckling under the strain of the outbreak and may fracture in weeks if people ignore holiday social distancing. 

Similar warnings echoed around the country, from Tennessee, which is seeing the nation’s worst new COVID-19 infection surge per capita, to Mississippi and West Virginia, which surpassed their previous highs for virus deaths reported in a single day on Tuesday. 

Dr Anthony Fauci, who received his COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday, said it was likely the new strain of coronavirus that is currently moving through the UK is already in the US

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