As Thanksgiving approaches, US virus cases tick upward once again

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As Thanksgiving approaches, US virus cases tick upward once again

“People want to get back to normalcy and we understand that – and there are ways to do it safely,” she said.

Still, Dr. Smith said he expects the outbreak to continue in Illinois as the virus continues to spread in midwestern and northeastern states that largely avoided the worst of summer. In the past two weeks, reports of new cases have increased by more than 40 percent in Pennsylvania, more than 80 percent in Massachusetts, and 70 percent in Indiana.

Infection levels continue to be high in much of the West, including Arizona and New Mexico, where hospitalizations are increasing, and in Alaska and Wyoming, which have begun to improve after ending major outbreaks. Is. But case rates in California are relatively low, as they are also in the South, the region hit hardest in the summer.

Before Thanksgiving 2020, the country was reporting 175,000 new infections a day and was in the midst of its worst-case scenario of the pandemic. Vaccines were still weeks away from being authorized, many schools were closed and rapid at-home tests were scarce. But as scientists warned that Covid-19 was unlikely to disappear completely, there was widespread optimism at the time that vaccines could make the virus a consideration in daily life.

“Last year it was bad during the holidays,” said 26-year-old Kirk Burroughs, a paramedic in Unity, Maine, who said he planned to stay home for another Thanksgiving. “I think it’s going to get worse this year.”

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Mr Burroughs, who described long ambulance rides with coronavirus patients being transferred to hospitals hours away, said he thought many had let their guard down as the pandemic persisted. Maine is regularly reporting more than 700 new cases a day, the most since the pandemic began, and hospitalizations have hit record lows.

“I think a lot of people are fed up,” said Mr. Burroughs. “They got that glimmer of hope in June and July, and they’re trucking right in. Now everyone’s used to it.”

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