US Covid-19 Cases Surging As Indoor Gatherings And Travel Increases Throughout Country

Small gatherings and interstate travel is leading to a massive surge in Covid-19 cases in the US as 36 states are now reporting increases in hospitalizations and deaths nationwide.

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According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “in the public square, we’re seeing a higher degree of vigilance and mitigation steps in many jurisdictions, but we’re also seeing an increasing threat through small household gatherings. Particularly with Thanksgiving coming up, we think it’s really important to stress the vigilance of these continued mitigation steps in the household setting,” said CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield in a call to the nation’s governors this past Tuesday. 

Dr. Deborah Birx emphasized Redfield’s warnings, urging Americans not to let their guard down this upcoming holiday season especially if you’re planning on travelling at all to see a loved one. Domestic travel is leading to new cases as well and the holidays are projected to keep this trend alive. Just because you assume that your loved ones have been quarantining and remaining safe, you should still take every necessary precaution possible before entering indoor spaces together. 

These warnings also come just a few weeks before the nation’s college student’s are expected to return home for their holiday breaks. Experts have urged young college students to think of their families before going home, and understand that their bodies aren’t as well-equipped to handle this virus as a twenty-year-old. These warnings are becoming more and more prominent as leading experts are predicting that the new cases the US is already experiencing will likely lead to a second-wave of cases. Dr. Anthony Fauci recently spoke with the media about how an increasing Covid-19 positivity rate may be foreshadowing a resurgence. 

“You’d like to see the rate of new infections in each state at less than 3%, optimally 1% or less, but we’re starting to see a number of states well above that, which is often highly predictive of a resurgence of cases.”

According to data from Johns Hopkins University, America is now averaging around 49,000 new Covid-19 cases daily. This is a 13% increase in new cases when compared to last week’s numbers, and is the highest amount of new cases the country has seen on a daily scale since the spring. Governor Gary Herbert of Utah recently spoke with the press about how his state is “facing its most dire episode yet in this pandemic.” 

According to Herbert the state is already using 16% of their ICU beds to treat Covid-19 patients, which is more than double what they were using closer to the beginning of the pandemic. About 70% of all ICU’s in Utah are currently occupied, a staggering number for experts who worry about what happens as that percentage gets closer to 100. 

In Wisconsin hospitalizations have tripled within the past month alone, according to the governor, who added that overall his citizens have been remaining diligent and doing as much as they could to get the virus under control. Dr. Fauci recently spoke with the media after he was criticized in a political ad for Donald Trump, claiming that regardless of who the president is, he “won’t be walking away from this outbreak.” 

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“In my nearly five decades of public service, I have never  endorsed a political candidate, that’s not helpful. I’ve devoted my entire professional life to fighting infectious diseases, and I won’t be stopping now.”

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Several local leaders throughout the middle-America who may have remained relatively relaxed throughout the beginning of this pandemic are now pushing for new measures following the rise in cases. For example, city leaders in Oklahoma are extending local mask mandates until at least December amid a rise in hospitalizations for the state. 

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham also announced several restrictions that will be implemented this week amid an “alarming” rise in cases for the state. “When the community spread of the virus becomes uncontrollable — and we are fast approaching that point — our only option is to simply shut down those opportunities for the virus,” she said to the press, adding that all bars and restaurants would be closing by 10 p.m. every night, and mass gatherings will be limited to five people. 

The push back on all of these closings while eight months into this global health crisis has everything to do with the economy. As Americans have seen, local, state, and federal government officials have placed their main priority on the economy and ensuring that it remains open as opposed to the now 220,000+ individuals who have died because of this virus. 

A majority of this pandemic in America has been about personal choice, hence why it’s one of the only countries in the world seeing tens of thousands of new cases every single day. Mask wearing, social distancing, avoiding things like bars, restaurants, and parties, have all felt optional in America thanks to the leaders who continue to claim that the virus isn’t that serious. 

On the brighter side, there are currently multiple covid-19 vaccine’s that are in the middle of their clinical trials. Fauci claims that US health officials should know by December whether or not there will be a safe and effective vaccine to be distributed among citizens. In the meantime, it’s imperative that we all do our part to protect ourselves, and those around us, from this pandemic.