The United States has surpassed 700,000 deaths from COVID-19, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University and remains the hardest-hit country in the world with about 15 percent of global fatalities.
The stark toll — roughly equivalent to the population of the nation’s capital, Washington, D.C. — was reached late Friday with an average of more than 1,000 people dying each day in a country where 55.7 percent of the population is now complete. vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The last 100,000 deaths occurred at a time when vaccines, which overwhelmingly prevented deaths, hospitalizations and serious illness, were available to every American over the age of 12.
After a heavily criticized early response to the pandemic, the US staged an effective vaccine rollout, sometimes exceeding four million injections per day.
However, the campaign has since slowed down significantly as a significant portion of US citizens still refuse to receive the injections, just as the highly contagious Delta strain of coronavirus ripped across the country, taking the death toll from 600,000 to 700,000 in three and a half. half months.
The state of Florida suffered by far the most deaths of all states during that period, with the virus killing about 17,000 residents since mid-June. Texas came in second with 13,000 deaths. The two states account for 15 percent of the country’s population, but more than 30 percent of the deaths in the country since the nation crossed the 600,000 threshold.
dr. David Dowdy, an infectious disease epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health who has analyzed publicly reported state data, said it was safe to say that at least 70,000 of the last 100,000 deaths were in unvaccinated people. And of those vaccinated people who died with breakthrough infections, most got the virus from an unvaccinated person, he said.
“Had we been more effective in our vaccination, I think it’s fair to say we could have prevented 90 percent of those deaths,” Dowdy told the Associated Press in mid-June.
Coronavirus disinformation has been rampant and masking remains a political issue, dividing many in the country.
Some Republican governors, such as those in Texas and Florida, have tried to ban mandatory masking in their states, citing individual freedoms.
The Democrat-led state of California, on the other hand, announced Friday that COVID-19 vaccinations will be mandatory for all students.
The move would make California the first state in the nation to make this a mandate, Governor Gavin Newsom said.
In Washington, hundreds of thousands of white flags fluttered on the grass of the National Mall, not far from the White House, in gloomy reminders of those who have died of COVID-19 in the country.
Nearly 4.8 million people have died worldwide since the outbreak was discovered in China in December 2019, according to a Johns Hopkins University count.