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U.S. COVID-19 cases reach six-month high, Florida grapples with surge

CoronavirusAug 05, 2021 08:11PM ET
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3/3 © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Patients wait in line to get a swab test at a COVID-19 mobile testing site hosted by the Manatee County Florida Department of Health in Palmetto, Florida, U.S., August 2, 2021. REUTERS/Octavio Jones/File Photo 2/3

By Maria Caspani and Roshan Abraham

(Reuters) -Daily new COVID-19 cases have climbed to a six-month high in the United States, with more than 100,000 infections reported nationwide as the Delta variant ravaged Florida and other states with lower vaccination rates.

The seven-day average of new reported cases reached nearly 95,000, a five-fold increase in less than a month, Reuters data through Wednesday showed. (Graphic on U.S. cases and deaths) https://tmsnrt.rs/2WTOZDR

Seven U.S. states with among the lowest COVID-19 vaccination rates - Florida, Texas, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi - account for half of the country's new cases and hospitalizations in the last week, White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients told reporters on Thursday.

"We're seeing terrifying #COVID19 trends in our hospitals," County Judge Lina Hidalgo wrote on Twitter. She is the top official of Harris County, the most populous county in Texas and home to the city of Houston. "At this point if you're unvaccinated by choice, you're complicit in this crisis."

The U.S. government will supply booster shots to Americans with compromised immune systems, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease expert, said Thursday. A day earlier he warned that cases could double to 200,000 per day due to the variant in the coming weeks.

The United States is joining Germany, France and Israel in giving booster shots despite a plea by the World Health Organization to hold off until more people around the world can get their first shot.

FLORIDA SURGE

Florida, which has emerged as a hotbed of new infections, set yet another grim hospitalization record on Thursday with 12,373 beds occupied by COVID-19 patients, according to data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). More children are hospitalized with the virus in Florida than in any other U.S. state.

Louisiana and Arkansas are also grappling with record or near-record numbers of coronavirus patients occupying beds, according to a Reuters tally.

Elsewhere, Virginia on Thursday became the third state after California and New York to mandate vaccines or weekly testing for all state employees. Vaccinations are required only for some government employees in New Jersey.

Cases were still rising in Los Angeles County, health director Barbara Ferrer told reporters, but appeared to be leveling off after a dramatic surge last week.

The rising number of infections prompted more private-sector companies to require vaccines for employees and customers and some have delayed plans for workers to return to the office.

Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), which had originally set Sept. 7 as the return to office date, on Thursday said it would not expect U.S. corporate employees to come back until next year.

U.S. COVID-19 cases reach six-month high, Florida grapples with surge
 

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Comments (8)
Whaling Trawler
Whaling Trawler Aug 06, 2021 3:52AM ET
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If I lived in Florida I'd be grappling with what beach to loung around on...mask and vaccine free of course
Transparent Labs
Transparent Labs Aug 05, 2021 9:14PM ET
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Neither Florida nor Texas are grappling with anything. They keep going down this road of propaganda and labeling the intelligent people as conspiracy theorists they will find out what happened in all other past empires. We will welcome them to the revolution. Sharpen the guillotine. This time though we have defensive weapons.
Pham Ngoc Tien
Pham Ngoc Tien Aug 05, 2021 8:33PM ET
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so vaccine is fake, no efficiency
Brandon Wooton
Brandon Wooton Aug 05, 2021 3:28PM ET
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this reads like a white house press release... well at least this white house. 12000 hospitalizations? in a state with 22,000,000 people. what's not in the article are per capita stats or comps with other states or even the mean.then there dr if/then/possibly Fauci who is better at prognosticating his own retirement speaking fees than public policy recommendations.then there is the child fearporn... note how no actual numbers are given... why do you think that is?another embarrassing example of poor journalism and lack of integrity from an industry that is turning into little more than party propaganda arm of a certain party.
Truth Trader
Truth Trader Aug 05, 2021 3:28PM ET
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How is the vote counting going for ya?
Jody Darden
Jody Darden Aug 05, 2021 3:28PM ET
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Truth Trader when pelosi and kamala said “voting machines are extremely unsecure and any havler could quickly gain access” or when they said “votes were changed in the voting machine”
Vlad Lozovskiy
Vlad Lozovskiy Aug 05, 2021 1:26PM ET
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Florida needs to be mentioned. Communists said so.
Jm Vm
Jm Vm Aug 05, 2021 1:26PM ET
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Well we all can understand why Florida would want to keep a very low profile and not be mentioned being the state that has led the Nation for over 6 months and is still leading the Nation in new Covid infections. No state wants to be known as the biggest failure in controlling the spread of the virus and placing their citizens and economy in danger. Vacationers know this all too well since the word got out and are vacationing elsewhere. It's not a secret Vlad.
Felipe Daniel
Felipe Daniel Aug 05, 2021 11:35AM ET
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Vaccinated people are not getting tested as often as unvaccinated.
Felipe Daniel
Felipe Daniel Aug 05, 2021 11:32AM ET
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Florida is not grappling with anything, businesses are thriving and getting stronger each day.
Jm Vm
Jm Vm Aug 05, 2021 11:32AM ET
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Yeah, like the convenient store on the corner that has an almost empty parking lot at noon and the empty streets, compared to normal, every afternoon on the east side of Orlando. Just love the lack of traffic on weekends too. If it gets any better we just don't know what we're going to do. Oh, I get it.... you're talking about the hospitals and doctors doing a whirlwind of business that's getting stronger by the day. You're sooooo right!
John Avenetti
John Avenetti Aug 05, 2021 10:43AM ET
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masks don't stop anything. how can do many people be deceived???
 
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