CHICAGO (Forsige) – Nearly half a million people in Americans have contracted the novel coronavirus in the last seven days, as cases and hospitalizations set new records in hot spots in the Midwest.
In the last week, more than 5,600 individuals have died from the virus nationally in the U.S., with hospitalizations shooting up 13%, a Reuters study showed.
Over the last seven days, Illinois, which has emerged as a hot spot in recent weeks, has registered more than 31,000 new cases, more new infections than any other state except Texas.
Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker introduced new rounds of restrictions in six out of 11 regions in order to try to curb the surge.
By Wednesday, indoor dining in bars and restaurants will be suspended and meetings will be limited to 25 people under a state formula that causes’ mitigation ‘when for at least two days in a row the positivity rate tops 8 percent. Some Chicago suburbs are part of the impacted areas.
Other states have backed reopening efforts to curb the transmission of the virus almost everywhere in the country as cooler weather sets in.
On Monday, Idaho Governor Brad Little announced that indoor gatherings of more than 50 individuals will be banned, and outdoor gatherings should be capped at 25% capacity.
Health experts agree that the virus is spreading due to private social events, cooler temperatures that push people indoors, and COVID-19 precautionary fatigue.
The Texas town of El Paso is also facing a surge outside the Midwest in cases that overwhelm local hospitals, with officials setting up an alternative treatment facility to help alleviate medical centers.
“We are seeing all sorts of patients. The narrative historically has been the above-65, those with multiple co-morbidities. But we’re seeing 20-year-olds. We’re seeing 30-year-olds, 40-year-olds,” Dr. Ogechika Alozie, an infectious disease specialist in El Paso, told Reuters. “There’s that exhaustion, but again, we buckle up and we take care of the patients.”
The U.S. President Donald Trump, facing a tough re-election struggle on Nov. 3, lashed out again at the news that the coronavirus is on the rise, and repeated his misleading assertion that in his fight with the virus that has killed more than 225,800 people, the nation is “rounding the corner.”
According to the state’s health department, Pennsylvania, a fiercely contested ‘battleground’ state in next week’s election, posted a new high on Tuesday in new coronavirus cases.
In the second paragraph, the article corrects the wording to indicate that more than 5,600 individuals died from the virus and were not infected.