By Ethan Resnik
As the 2020 election projects Biden as the president-elect, Covid-19 cases are beginning to surge across the U.S, hitting record highs and sparking new grim projections by experts.
According to The Atlantic, health experts have estimated “one in every 1,000 Americans has tested positive for the virus, and about two in every 100,000 Americans have died of it.” On Oct. 30, the U.S. reported over 100,000 new cases of Covid-19, the highest number of cases recorded in a single day so far.
The U.S. now reports nearly 60,000 cases a day. These numbers were only seen prior to the peak in the summer. Since the middle of September, according to The Atlantic, the number of new cases diagnosed each day has swelled by 73 percent, and the number of Americans hospitalized has increased by around 40 percent.
According to Reuters, this surge is more widespread across America than other surges as the cold weather begins to drive people indoors, schools reopen and people feel “Covid fatigue,” where they ignore guidelines that have been in place since April.
The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), according to Reuters, have suggested that these factors would drive the spread of the virus, with IHME director Chris Murray saying that “we are heading into a very substantial fall/winter surge.”
The IHME says the number of cases could dramatically decrease if people wear masks and practice social distancing, adding that the number of possible deaths could drop by 130,000 if 95 percent of people cover their faces.
“The good news on the horizon is that vaccines look promising,” National Institute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases director Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN in an interview, according to Reuters. Fauci said that experts should have at least one or two vaccines that will be proven to be “safe and effective” by November or December.
Pfizer, one of the leaders in the race to develop a vaccine, said the final-stage trial of its vaccine candidate has now enrolled nearly all of the planned 44,000 participants worldwide, and that nearly 36,000 had received the second shot of the two-dose vaccine, according to CBS News.
Other companies such as Novavax, according to WBAL 11 in Maryland, are also reporting encouraging data as they move into mid-to-late stage trials. Moderna, another frontrunner in the vaccine race, according to Reuters, will release its data from their late stage trials this month, setting the stage for potential approval from the FDA.