Perhaps more immediate than the final stage of Friday is the recent increase in cases per day. The average weekly number of new daily cases in the country has moved over 53,000 – an increase of more than 55% in just over a month, according to data from John Hopkins.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s best expert on infectious diseases, warned that this was too high at the end of the year.
• At least two states, Illinois and North Carolina, have reported their highest daily number of Covid-19 cases to date, health officials said.
• Seven states saw a record for Covid-19 hospitalizations on Thursday – Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma and Wisconsin, according to the Covid Tracking Project.
• Fourteen states set records for the seven-day average of new daily cases on Thursday, according to John Hopkins.
And the test is much worse in certain states – sitting above 20% on Friday in Idaho, Iowa, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Experts, including Fauci, say rising levels of positivity predict jumps in cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
“It’s extremely important to understand where this virus is circulating so that we can get cases under control and reverse the positivity,” US Surgeon General Jerome Adams told a news conference in Wisconsin on Friday.
“The virus is already winning”
More than 30 countries have amassed more new cases of Covid-19 in the past week than the previous week, according to data from John Hopkins.
The 14 states that reached their highest seven-day frequency of new daily cases are: Alaska, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
The governor of New Mexico called the coronavirus situation in her country “the most serious emergency New Mexico has ever faced” on Thursday.
The state’s positive sample rate was 8.1%, said Governor Michel Lujan Grisham. The average value of new daily cases for a week – 457 on Thursday – is more than 400% higher than at one point in early September.
This comes just days after it issued new restrictions to help curb the spread of the virus – including a restriction on mass gatherings and a 22-hour shutdown time for bars serving alcohol.
“The virus is already winning,” Lujan Grisham said. “We are in unexplored waters.”
In some parts of the state, intensive care units are “full,” according to New Mexico Secretary of Health and Human Services David Scraze.
“This is a serious time for the state of New Mexico,” Scraz said, adding that the state’s seven-day average daily curve was “dwarf of previous curves.”
Masks could save 70,000 lives
It doesn’t have to be that way. Experts have repeatedly said that doubling simple safety measures, including masks, social distancing and hand washing, can help slow the transmission of the virus.
A global study found that remdezivir did not help
The agency says this is “convincing evidence” for the drug – and the findings are disappointing.
Until now, remdezivir was the only drug that appeared to have specific effects for Covid-19 and the only drug authorized for emergency use, specifically for the US Food and Drug Administration.
Prior to the WHO study, a large controlled study of remdezivir in the United States found that it reduced recovery time by about a third in severely ill, hospitalized adults with Covid-19, but did not help much in those with milder cases.
Gilead Sciences, the manufacturer of the drug, said the findings did not mean the drug was of no use.
“The emerging data appear to be incompatible with more reliable evidence from a number of randomized, controlled trials published in peer-reviewed journals confirming the clinical benefit of Veklury (remdezivir),” Gilead said in a statement. “We are concerned that the data from this open global study have not passed the rigorous review required for constructive scientific discussion.”
CNN’s John Bonifield, Jason Hannah, Raja Razek, Ben Tinker and Amanda Watts contributed to this report.