- The outbreak, initially identified in China, is continuing to grow.
- The disease is called COVID-19. It’s caused by an infection with the new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, which is one of multiple coronaviruses that can be transmitted to humans.
- Other examples of coronaviruses include SARS, MERS, and even the common cold.
- Globally, there have been more than 9.6 million confirmed cases and more than 490,000 associated deaths, according to Johns Hopkins.
- The United States currently has the highest reported number of confirmed cases with over 2.4 million. However, due to a lack of testing, the number of actual cases may be far higher.
- More than 124,000 people in the United States have died from the disease and more than 27,000 are currently being hospitalized
COVID-19 cases rise, symptoms may last months
June 25 saw 40,401 new U.S. cases of COVID-19, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University & Medicine Coronavirus Resource Center.
However, according to the CDC, those numbers are very likely understated.
“Every epidemiologist was telling, screaming as loud as we could, that three weeks after Memorial Day we’d have a peak in the cases, and five weeks after Memorial Day we’d begin to see a peak in hospitalizations and deaths,” epidemiologist Larry Brilliant told CNN.
“If you let everybody out without face masks and without social distancing in the middle of a pandemic, this is what was predicted,” he said.
Although COVID-19 typically resolves in weeks, a significant number “are still suffering with symptoms 3 months into the illness,” Dr. Helen Salisbury of University of Oxford wrote in the British Medical Journal.
Meanwhile, scientists are just beginning to understand the array of health problems caused by the coronavirus, which may affect both patients and health systems for some time.
Texas stops reopening amid surge in COVID-19
Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced that reopening will be paused as the state is seeing a major surge in COVID-19 cases.
The state reported 5,500 cases in a single day this week. Over 125,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the state since the outbreak began.
Texas is one of many states seeing a massive uptick in COVID-19 cases. Arizona and Florida are also seeing major rises with each state seeing record numbers of cases this week.
California is also seeing a surge in cases with over 5,000 daily cases reported this week.
In all, 26 states are seeing some increase in COVID-19 cases.
While Abbott announced a pause in reopenings due to the disease, he said that he will not reimplement shutdowns.
“The last thing we want to do as a state is go backwards and close down businesses,” Governor Abbott said in a statement. “This temporary pause will help our state corral the spread until we can safely enter the next phase of opening our state for business. I ask all Texans to do their part to slow the spread of COVID-19 by wearing a mask, washing their hands regularly, and socially distancing from others.”
Federal funding for 13 COVID-19 testing sites to be cut
The funding for 13 COVID-19 testing sites is expected to be cut by the federal government, according to NBC News.
Federal funding for the sites will end June 30 even as COVID-19 cases continue to surge in the United States.
Seven of the testing sites are in Texas which is seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases after reopening at the end of May. On June 23, state officials reported a new daily high of 5,000 cases.
Federal officials said they weren’t slowing down on testing and hundreds of sites will remain open.
“We have expanded from the original 41 sites to over 600 in 48 states and the District of Columbia in the federal bundled payment program to pharmacies, and enabled over 1,400 additional pharmacy sites through regulatory flexibility empowering pharmacists and facilitating billing and reimbursement,” Brett Giroir, the administration’s testing czar, told NBC News.
The other sites affected by the loss of federal funding are in Illinois, New Jersey, Colorado, and Pennsylvania.
President Trump made headlines this weekend after saying that he wanted to slow down testing. He later said he wasn’t joking about the statement.