According to the latest statistics released by Johns Hopkins University in the US, the cumulative number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the world has exceeded 200 million and the cumulative death toll has exceeded 4.25 million as of Sunday afternoon. Among them, the United States has more than 35 million cumulative confirmed cases and more than 600,000 cumulative deaths, making it the country with the most cumulative confirmed cases and deaths.
Due to the accelerated spread of the mutant Delta strain in the United States and the wide variation in vaccination rates among states, the outlook for the U.S. response to the coronavirus remains bleak.
Deterioration of the outbreak
Recently, the core indicators of COVID-19 in the United States have rebounded sharply. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s weekly epidemic report released on July 30, the weekly average number of confirmed cases, deaths and hospitalizations in the US rose by 64.1 percent, 33.3 percent and 46.3 percent, respectively, from the previous week. According to the CENTERS for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the average daily increase in the number of confirmed cases in the seven days ending Monday was 72,493, the highest since mid-February. The seven-day average daily increase of confirmed cases has been on the rise since mid-June.
Experts believe that the recent surge in COVID-19 cases in the United States is related to factors such as the accelerated spread of the highly contagious mutant Delta strain and the fact that many people are still unvaccinated. Chen Zhuo, an associate professor in the Department of Health policy and management at the University of Georgia school of Public Health, told Xinhua on Wednesday that most of the cases were caused by the Delta strain, and most of them were unvaccinated. States with low vaccination rates are emerging as new hotspots. In the last two weeks of July, the Delta strain accounted for 93.4 percent of all new coronavirus cases in the United States, according to new data on the outbreak released by the CENTERS for Disease Control and Prevention.
A surge in hospital cases
The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in the United States has surged recently as the Delta strain spreads. Mississippi, which has one of the lowest vaccination rates among US states, has seen a surge in the number of COVID-19 patients requiring hospitalization. Only about 13% of Mississippi’s 827 intensive care beds are currently available, according to data released July 30 by the state’s health department. All 88 intensive care beds at the University of Mississippi Medical Center are occupied. A Health center in Florida has stopped all non-emergency surgeries due to a surge in COVID-19 hospitalizations. Dr. Nell Finkler, chief clinical affairs officer at the health center, noted that more than 90 percent of COVID-19 patients currently hospitalized have not been vaccinated.
The return of masks
As of July 31, Washington, D.C., has reimposed a mandatory face mask, requiring people age 2 and older to wear them in indoor public places, whether or not they have been vaccinated. Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser also strongly advised people to wear masks in open Spaces with large crowds.
The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced on May 13 that it would no longer recommend masks for people who have been vaccinated, but changed its advice on July 27, recommending that people who have been vaccinated wear masks in indoor public places in areas with high transmission of the Novel coronavirus. Unvaccinated people should wear masks in indoor public places wherever they are in the United States; Primary and secondary school students are required to wear masks whether they are vaccinated or not.
Citing internal CDC documents, the Washington Post reported that the data showed that the Delta strain was highly contagious and that “given the high infectiicity and current vaccine coverage rates [in the US], widespread mask wearing is critical to containing the spread of the Delta strain.”
Call for vaccination
At present, vaccination rates in the United States show a wide range of states. Jeffrey Zintz, the White House coordinator for COVID-19 response, said on Tuesday that new cases are concentrated in areas with low vaccination rates. Us health officials are urging more Americans to get the coronavirus vaccine.
However, the United States has encountered resistance in pushing for vaccination. According to a survey released By the Kaiser Family Foundation on Thursday, 53 percent of unvaccinated Americans believe that vaccination poses a greater health threat than Novel Coronavirus. And among those who got the vaccine, 88 percent thought getting the Novel coronavirus would be more dangerous than getting the vaccine. The difference in perception between those who are vaccinated and those who are not helps explain why the push for vaccination in the United States has been so controversial, the report says.
Anthony Fauci, director of the NATIONAL Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said that about 93 million people in the US who are currently eligible for the CORONAVIRUS vaccine have not been vaccinated, and that these people could become a “vulnerable group” in considerable numbers as the mutated virus speeds up its spread. He is concerned that a stronger variant of the novel coronavirus could emerge in a large number of unvaccinated people, affecting the effectiveness of the existing vaccine.
Fauci said the daily number of new cases in the United States could rise to between 100,000 and 200,000 per day in the future. Cases caused by the Delta strain are “skyrocketing” across the United States, he said, and the country could be “in trouble” this fall unless the majority of unvaccinated Americans act and choose to get vaccinated.
“If we can’t get the vast majority of people vaccinated, then the virus will continue to lurk from fall to winter, and it will have ample opportunity to mutate,” Fauci said.