New study projects up to 500k US Covid-19 deaths by Feb

24 Octobre, 2020, 19:48 | Auteur: Yves Courtet
  • A general view of the hospital at the Mayo Clinic Health System Luther Campus as the coronavirus disease outbreak continues in Eau Claire Wisconsin

NEW YORK, Oct 24 ― The US death toll from Covid-19 could surpass 500,000 by February unless almost all Americans wear face masks, researchers said yesterday, as 14 states set new records for one-day increases in infections.

According to a report by Jordan News Agency (Petra), a study by the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation estimated that the pandemic could claim a total of more than 500,000 lives by February, up from the current death toll of over 221,000.

Even if mask compliance were only 85 percent, the number of lives saved compared to that baseline would still be over 95,000, they reported in the peer-reviewed journal Natural medicine.

The examine's authors famous: "The potential life-saving profit of accelerating masks use within the coming fall and winter can't be overstated".

Donald Trump has shunned mask use in public, and has mocked his rival for the White House, Joe Biden, for his consistent wearing of them.

Few of Trump's supporters cover their faces at his campaign rallies, which resumed after the president recovered from a fight against the virus earlier this month.

There are now a total of more than 8,450,000 positive COVID-19 cases since the pandemic started in the country, and at least 223,000 deaths from the disease.

In mid-July, IHME modellers accurately predicted 224,000 deaths by November 1.

Also on Thursday, the number of COVID-19 patients in US hospitals climbed to a two-month high.

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Most experts agree that an effective vaccine will at best not be approved and available until next year.

To map what the near-term future might hold, IHME epidemiologists and modellers designed three possible scenarios for the United States, extending out to the end of February.

In the first case, states continue to lift all restrictions on movement and social interaction, leading to more extensive contact between people.

Researchers predict that "under all scenarios evaluated" in the report, the U.S. is "likely to face a continued public health challenge from the Covid-19" into next year.

More plausibly, states might reinstate distancing mandates when daily deaths reach a threshold of eight deaths per million.

"Unless we act now to curb the transmission rates in Middle Tennessee, we expect this trend to continue", medical systems Ascension St. Thomas, Tristar Health, Meharry Medical College, Vanderbilt Health said in a joint statement this week.

"It's possible that USA residents might want to select between increased ranges of masks use or danger the frequent redeployment of extra stringent and economically damaging SDMs [social distancing mandates]; or, within the absence of both measure, face a actuality of a rising dying toll", the authors wrote.

"Using a universal mask could save an additional 129,574 lives from September 22, 2020 to February 2021", she concluded.


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