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U.S. reversing course on COVID-19

Posted: Thursday, July 2, 2020. 6:17 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: As the United States prepares to celebrate Independence Day this Saturday, wide swathes of the country have seen record numbers of cases – and reversal of procedures on opening up to reduce transmission.

On Wednesday according to the New York Times, almost 50 thousand new cases were reported, the fifth single-day case record in just eight days.

Texas reached more than 8,000 new infections, surpassing its previous daily record set on Tuesday. Arizona added more than 4,700 cases, just under its single-day record set a day earlier. In Georgia, there were more than 2,300 new cases. Florida had more than 6,500.

Now, the Times says, health officials around the country are urging weary Americans to scale back their holiday plans.

In New York City, restaurants won’t resume indoor service next week as originally planned. Miami Beach said that it would reinstate a nightly curfew beginning Thursday, and California, which was the first state to shut down, once again shut down bars and halted indoor dining at restaurants in 19 counties.

In Arizona, which President Donald Trump visited in May and praised for its reopening plans, Governor Doug Ducey decided this week to close the state’s water parks and to order bars, gyms and movie theatres to close for 30 days. On Wednesday, Vice President Mike Pence visited Arizona to discuss the crisis.

Pence told Ducey that the federal government would help the state with a request for 500 additional public health personnel by mobilizing doctors, nurses and technical personnel.

In Nebraska, state leaders suggested that holiday cookout hosts keep guest lists to make contact tracing easier if there were an outbreak. The Oregon Health Authority warned residents that “the safest choice this holiday is to celebrate at home.” And in Los Angeles County, California, where 10,000 new cases have been announced since last Friday, the health department ordered beaches closed and fireworks shows canceled.

The Times concluded, “Elsewhere, the pleas were similar: Skip the party. Stay home. Don’t make a bad situation worse.”


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