US Covid death toll hits 300k as vaccine rollout begins

Milestone came on day vaccination programme began

Bill Gates says US Covid response is a 'tragedy'
Leer en Español

The number of dead from the coronavirus pandemic in the US has topped 300,000 on the day that the first Covid-19 vaccines were administered.

A rolling count by NBC News shows the country hitting the grim milestone on Monday morning. The same count has more than 16.4 million confirmed cases of the virus — the largest number in the world.

As the nation struggles to cope with the surge of new infections and the strain on medical services, an ICU nurse in New York City became one of the first people to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine outside of the trial stage of development.

Only 27 days have passed since the US hit 250,000 deaths, making this the fastest increase since the pandemic began. More than 200,000 new cases are being reported every day that could have been prevented with a stricter adherence to social distancing and mask wearing.

By some estimates there could be 500,000 deaths by the time the vaccine is widely available to the general population by the early summer of 2021, and at current rates of increase it might just be one month before another 100,000 Americans die from the virus.

South Dakota and North Dakota have led the nation in deaths per capita. As the early epicentre of the US outbreak, New York and New Jersey lead the nation in per capita deaths.

Last week, Robert Redfield, director of the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that the virus has surpassed heart disease as the leading cause of death in the US.

New York City mayor Bill de Blasio has warned the city to prepare for the possibility of a “total lockdown” as Covid cases continue to soar across the five boroughs.

At least 124 new coronavirus deaths and 10,027 new cases were reported in the city on Sunday.

Over the past week, there has been an average of 10,031 cases per day, an increase of 56 per cent from the average two weeks earlier.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in