The director of the National Institutes of Health (“NIH”), Dr. Francis Colllins, said on Sunday that the United States could see more than 200,000 new COVID-19 cases per day as the more contagious Delta variant continues to spread. Dr. Colllins told Fox News Sunday he will “be surprised if we don’t cross 200,000 cases a day in the next couple of weeks.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) reported 140,144 new cases and a seven-day moving average of 119,523 infections on Friday. The CDC reported 804 deaths and a 544 seven-day moving average Friday. Said Collins: “with Delta variant, which is so contagious and this heartbreaking situation where 90 million people are still unvaccinated who are sitting ducks for this virus and that’s the mess we’re in. We’re in a world of hurt and it’s a critical juncture to try to do everything we can to turn that around.”
Daily cases had been below 100,000 since the end of February before spiking in recent weeks. The United States last reported more than 200,000 cases in January, before COVID-19 vaccines were widely available. 50.7% of Americans are fully vaccinated while 59.7% have received at least one dose to date, while 61.7% of adults have completed their vaccine series and 72% have at least received their first dose, according to the CDC. Additionally, CNN reported that COVID-19 patients account for 15% of hospitalizations in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada and Texas, all states which have fallen behind the national average for vaccinations.
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