The COVID-19 pandemic in the United States gets worse by the day. Yesterday, there we 300,928 more confirmed cases in the U.S. up to a total of 16,016,159. Deaths stand at 298,904, up by 3,454. And, it will get worse. The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine forecasts American deaths will reach 539,000 by April 1. And, that is if a vaccine is distributed in a timely fashion.
One county in America has been hit so hard that it has more confirmed cases than all but sevens states, which include the one in which it is located. Los Angeles County, the nation’s largest by population has 480,354 confirmed cases, which rose by 12,383. It also has the most deaths at 8,149, a figure which rose by 74 yesterday.
The states ahead of Los Angeles County in confirmed cases are California at 1,528,177, Texas at 1,403,687, Florida at 1,106,396, Illinois at 834,668, New York at 759,765, Ohio at 542,209, and Georgia at 512,715.
Los Angeles County deaths are ahead of Kings County in second place, which is the Brooklyn borough of New York City at 7,549. New York City was hit so hard in March and April that it still has extremely high fatal case counts. Queens County, also part of New York City, ranks third in fatal cases at 7,400. It is followed by Cook County at 7,282. It is home to Chicago. Next on the list, Bronx County in New York City has 5,038.
Los Angeles County’s population is 10,105,518, which puts it at almost double the next largest U.S. county–Cook, which has a population of 5,180,493.
The problem in Los Angeles County has triggered a series of measures to slow the spread of the disease as it begins to overwhelm the area’s hospitals. KTLA reports: “All residents within the city of Los Angeles should continue to remain in their homes and follow the city’s “safer-at-home” order, which mirrors guidance from L.A. County, according to the mayor’s office.” It is a virtual lockdown and it could extend beyond the end of the year.
At the extreme end of the forecasts about COVID-19 case increases and deaths is a prediction that each will double until vaccines bring the disease under control. If that happens, Los Angeles County could end up with one million confirmed cases.
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