The United States has registered more than 12 million cases of COVID-19 as public health experts continue to warn people to heed the warning not to travel for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.
As of Saturday afternoon, the United States reported more than 12.09 million coronavirus cases and more than 255,000 deaths, the highest number in the world, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
In recent weeks, there has been an increase in new infections in the United States, as well as hospitalizations, as colder weather forces more people indoors.
Authorities in several states have warned that health care systems could soon be overloaded as hospitalizations have more than doubled since the summer months. As of Friday, more than 82,000 people were hospitalized with the disease, the COVID Tracking Project said.
As Thanksgiving approaches on November 26, state and national authorities are increasingly warning not to travel.
On Saturday, seven governors of the Midwestern states ̵
On Thursday, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a “firm recommendation” to stay home on Thursday.
The agency discouraged any meetings with people who do not live in a household for 14 days – the incubation period of the virus.
However, many people ignore this advice.
Transport Security Administration spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein wrote on Twitter that Friday was only the second time since the pandemic began that more than a million passengers had been screened at airports across the country.
Updated statistics: On Friday, November 20, @TSA
checked 1,019,836 people at airport security checkpoints across the country. This is the second time that the volume of pandemic passengers has exceeded 1 million. https://t.co/rH5iMMfW0n #traveling
– Lisa Farbstein, TSA Spokesperson (@TSA_Northeast) November 21, 2020
Numerous new restrictions have been introduced to respond to the wave in COVID-19 cases.
On Saturday, California will begin imposing curfews between 10:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. local time (6:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. GMT), while New York closed schools for 1.1 million students earlier this week. Chicago – the third largest city in the country – has been under an order to stay at home since Monday.
The Associated Press reported on Saturday that Republican lawmakers in states where the virus is growing, including Ohio, Missouri, Tennessee and Pennsylvania, oppose rules requiring them to wear masks in their own government buildings.
Nearly 200 lawmakers across the country have tested positive for COVID-19, and four have died since the pandemic began, the agency said.
Crowds at Sky Harbor: The day after the CDC advised people to cancel their Thanksgiving travel plans, #azfamily viewer Ed Westerfield caught this scene of passengers waiting at their gates pic.twitter.com/r9gIhWlbek
– Max Gorden (@Max_Gorden) November 21, 2020
The infections also continue to affect President Donald Trump’s inner circle, with his eldest son Donald Trump Jr. announcing on Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19 and was in quarantine.
The Trump administration has been heavily criticized for its response to the pandemic.
On Monday, President-elect Joe Biden expressed disappointment with Trump’s refusal to cooperate in the White House transition process, saying “more people could die” from COVID-19 without immediate coordination to fight the virus.