While Americans have been rejoicing over the return to near-normalcy, the number of new daily cases and deaths of the coronavirus-borne illness rose for a third-straight day, with cases topping the 20,000 mark for the first time in over a week.
The seven-day average of cases also ticked higher, but it was still down significantly from two weeks ago.
There were at least 22,314 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, according to a New York Time Tracker, up from 15,059 on Tuesday, after 13,758 new cases on Monday and 6,067 on Sunday. Read previous Coronavirus Update columns.
Deaths rose to at least 449 on Wednesday from 373 on Tuesday, which followed 305 deaths on Monday and 253 deaths on Sunday.
The seven-day average of cases edged up to 14,809 on Wednesday from 14,030 on Tuesday, as the pace of declines from two weeks ago slipped to 36% from 42% the day before. For deaths, the seven-day average slipped to 417 from Tuesday’s 438, to hold steady at a 20% decline from two weeks ago.
The number of states that have seen the weekly trend of new cases rise this week inched up to 15 on Thursday from 14 on Wednesday, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University. Last week, just one state was seeing a rising trend of cases.
On the vaccination front, the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that 304.75 million doses have been administered, and 164.83 million adults, or 63.9% of that cohort, have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
To reach President Biden’s goal of having 70% of the U.S.’s adult population receiving at least one dose by July 4, the CDC data suggests that 15.73 million adults have to get at least one shot over the next 23 days, for an average of about 684,121 adults a day.
To help reach Biden’s goal, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.
said Thursday that it will extend pharmacy hours for the next three Fridays for walk-in COVID-19 vaccinations.
Meanwhile, 140.98 million Americans have been fully vaccinated, representing 42.5% of the total population.
Within age groups, 50.3% of Americans who are at least 12 years old are fully vaccinated, as are 53.3% of the U.S. adult population and 75.7% of Americans at least 65 years old.
In the U.S., fully vaccinated means it has been two weeks since the second of the two-dose vaccines developed by Pfizer Inc.
and partner BioNTech SE
or Moderna Inc.
have been administered, or it’s been two weeks since receiving the lone dose of Johnson & Johnson’s
So far only the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine has been granted emergency use for people as young as 12 years old. Moderna said Thursday that it has filed for Emergency Use Authorization of its COVID-19 vaccine in adolescents.
Separately, there are millions of J&J vaccine doses that are set to expire this month, in the aftermath of a temporary suspension of the doses in April to assess a rare blood-clot risk, as The Wall Street Journal recently reported.
The U.S. leads the world by far in the number of people fully vaccinated, tripling the 45.63 million in second-place India who have been fully vaccinated, according to JHU data. The United Kingdom is third with 28.54 million people. Meanwhile, the U.S. is eighth in the percentage of its population fully vaccinated, behind first-place Seychelles at 67.5% and second-place Marino at 63.7%.
The global case tally for the coronavirus-borne illness rose to 174.53 million on Thursday, while the death toll rose to 3,764,439, according to JHU data. The numbers of more than doubled year to date, as there were just under 83 million total cases at the end of 2020 and about 1.8 million deaths.
There have been 2.24 million vaccine doses administered worldwide as of Thursday, the data show.
The U.S. leads the world in total cases with 33.42 million and deaths with 598,456.
India continues to move closer to the U.S., with cases rising to 29.18 million, but is third in the world in deaths with 359,676.
Brazil is second in deaths at 479,515 and third in cases with 17.12 million.
The U.K. is fourth in deaths worldwide, and it leads Europe, at 28,131, while France is fourth globally in cases and leads Europe with 5.79 million.
China, where the virus was first discovered late in 2019, has had 103,261 cases and 4,846 deaths, according to its official numbers, which are widely held to be massively underreported.