US tops six million coronavirus cases

The United States surpassed six million coronavirus cases on Monday, adding a million infections in three weeks, as India and parts of Europe reported alarming news on the pandemic’s economic toll.

While it accounts for a quarter of the global caseload, the US is reporting a third fewer new daily infections than it did during the July peak, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker.

But the virus is still raging in some regions, with no coordinated federal response, and President Donald Trump — desperate to present a positive picture as he seeks re-election in November — has made clear he favors less testing, so that America does not look so bad.

The US remains the country hit hardest by far by the health crisis gripping the world, with 183,203 Covid-19 deaths, the Baltimore-based university’s tracker showed.

The US charted its five millionth case on August 9. That was just 17 days after it hit four million.

Global coronavirus infections have soared past 25 million, as countries tighten restrictions to halt the health crisis that has upended life for most of humanity.

A million additional cases have been detected globally roughly every four days since mid-July, according to an AFP tally, with India on Sunday setting the record for the highest single-day rise in cases with 78,761.

In America, there are great disparities from between states. New York City, the epicenter of the crisis in the spring, is doing much better after months of lockdown and other measures to fight the virus.

Only one percent of tests in New York come back positive, and on Sunday it reported just one death, compared to more than a thousand nationwide.

The US Open tennis tournament began there Monday, albeit with no spectators and with strict health safeguards in force.

But other parts of America such as the South and Midwest are showing a much higher incidence of Covid-19. One university in Alabama has reported more than 1,000 cases since classes resumed after the summer break.

And the death toll is expected to reach 200,000 in September, according to epidemiological models. (AFP | Daniel Woolls)

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