Washington (AP) – US President-elect Joe Biden has warned Americans of the dramatic increase in corona pandemic deaths and urged them to take protective action.
“I don’t want to scare anyone, but get the facts: we’re likely to lose another 250,000 people between now and January,” Biden said Wednesday (local time) at an online event with employees and small business owners. ‘Do you understand me? Because people are not careful. “The spread of the virus must be limited.
Biden has not provided information based on his estimate of 250,000 other deaths. According to statistics from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, the coronavirus has killed more than 270,000 people in the United States since the start of the pandemic. A model by researchers at the IHME Institute at the University of Washington in Seattle, USA, estimates that more than 502,000 deaths were caused by relaxed protections and more than 367,000 by tougher protections at the end of January. This model has also been cited several times by the White House in the past.
CDC Health Chief Robert Redfield said Wednesday at an event of the US Chamber of Commerce, “Unfortunately, I think we could have nearly 450,000 virus deaths by February.” However, that has not been agreed, but depends on the extent to which the Americans adhere to protective measures. “The reality is: December and January and February will be difficult. In fact, I believe these will be the most difficult times in the country’s public health history. “
Despite the CDC warnings, the official residence of outgoing President Donald Trump celebrates the Christmas period, the White House spokeswoman made clear on Wednesday. “If you can loot shops, burn down buildings, and protest, you can go to a Christmas party,” Kayleigh McEnany said at a White House press conference.
McEnany hinted at the fact that the Democrats would criticize Trump’s public events during the pandemic, but not the – mostly peaceful – protests against racism and police brutality. The celebrations are held responsibly and with protective measures, she emphasized. Trump has repeatedly downplayed the threat from the virus.
The CDC health agency strongly discourages travel and family visits around all December holidays. “The best way to protect yourself and others is to postpone travel and stay at home,” CDC employee Henry Walke said during a conference by telephone. “We need to stop this exponential growth, which is why we ask the American people to prevent infections and delay travel.”
The CDC had already advised against family visits and travel for Thanksgiving last week. However, many people did not adhere to it. In the US, families and large groups of friends traditionally get together for Thanksgiving – but there are usually large gatherings at Christmas and other holidays in December as well.
The number of new infections in the US had recently risen further, the number of corona deaths registered within 24 hours has reached a new high since mid-April with 2597 on Tuesday. In total, more than 13.7 million people are infected with the corona virus in the country with about 330 million inhabitants. Since the start of the pandemic, more than 270,000 people infected with the Sars-CoV-2 pathogen have died. In absolute terms, that is more than in any other country in the world.
The number of Covid-19 patients treated as inpatient is also unprecedented in the US. According to the Covid Tracking Project, as of Wednesday evening, more than 100,000 patients had to be treated nationally in the hospital for the first time. CDC chief Redford also justified his urgent warning with the pressure on the health system in the US states.