USA: 5 facts about the new coronavirus pandemic

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The US has already surpassed (according to the Reuters news agency count) or will by the weekend (according to the French agency, which is based on the Johns Hopkins University count) the tragic milestone, unimaginable one million years ago, of COVID-19.

It is the first country in the world to surpass it, although experts estimate that the true account of the victims of the new coronavirus pandemic, both in this country and worldwide, is probably even heavier.

Here are five key facts about a US pandemic.

Creepy numbers

The infection caused by the new coronavirus almost killed one American at 330.

This is the highest mortality rate among the economically developed countries (it can be compared with ratios such as 1: 379 in the United Kingdom, 1: 455 in France).

More than 203,000 children in the United States have lost at least one parent or guardian. About a thousand died because of COVID-19. Excluding the other effects on the physical and mental health of children and youth due to the pandemic.

At the peak of the wave attributed to the Omicron variant, the country recorded more than 800,000 cases per day on average. The total number of infections has now exceeded 82 million, and this number is likely to be underestimated, given the lack of reliable tests at the beginning of the pandemic and now self-tests, the positive results of which are often not even reported to the authorities.

2. New York, the epicenter of the first wave

Although it was the American West that recorded the first cases, it was New York, the cultural capital and global financial hub, that was hit hardest during the first wave.

The city that never sleeps, the Big Apple turned into a ghost town, with its dead in refrigerated trucks and its boulevards empty. The more affluent inhabitants rushed to abandon it, the less privileged just kept the lockdown.

The metropolis, where the wound has not yet healed, counts to date more than 40,000 deaths due to COVID-19, mainly in the first wave, in the spring of 2020.

3. Vaccines in record time

Faced with a storm of criticism for his slowness of reaction and the way he had long downplayed the scale of the disaster, former President Donald Trump was credited with helping to develop vaccines with the Warp Speed ​​initiative.

Purpose: to allocate billions from the state budget for vaccine research and development, in particular to reduce the costs of clinical trials for pharmaceutical groups.

The result: the first vaccines – from Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna – were licensed by the US Drug Enforcement Administration in mid-December, just a year after the first cases of SARS-CoV-2 were announced in China.

4. The dividing line of the mask

In the United States, a politically highly polarized country, few social issues were as divisive as COVID-19 masks and vaccines.

Between progressives who advocated social distance, masks and vaccines, and conservatives who rejected any violation of individual liberties by the state, the battle raged to the highest levels of the state, with Donald Trump stubbornly refusing to wear Joe Biden promoting himself as a big proponent of vaccination.

From schools to airplanes, passing through malls, the use of masks caused endless disputes, which in some cases even led to exchanges of fire.

A more recent development: a court in Florida, appointed by Donald Trump, lifted in April the obligation of citizens to wear a mask in public transport.

The federal government appealed the decision.

5. New resurgence

The US infection rate is rising again recently, possibly due to Omicron variants.

While it had dropped to about 25,000 cases per day in March, the seven-day average has now risen to 78,000 cases per 24 hours, according to CDC figures.

source: ΑΠΕ

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