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The forecast from the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention now projects that the death toll from COVID-19 in the United States could reach between 276,000 and 298,000 by December 12, just a few weeks after the US. USA passed the 250,000 mark on Wednesday.

The CDC’s joint forecast, which offers projections for the next few weeks, previously projected up to 282,000 deaths by Dec. 5.

The United States topped 250,000 deaths on Wednesday. (Getty)

“The number of deaths that we will see in three to four weeks reflects the actions we are all taking right now,” said Dr. Leana Wen, an emergency physician and former Baltimore health commissioner.

She urged American people have a safe Thanksgiving vacation or plan to have one in July.

“I understand that people are worried, stressed, they haven’t seen their loved ones, they want to see their loved ones now more than ever,” said Dr. Wen.

“But we really can’t do that in person, indoors, safely this Thanksgiving.”

Dr. Wen’s comments came as the CDC recommended yesterday that Americans should not travel during the Thanksgiving holiday.

Dr. Henry Walke, the agency’s COVID-19 Incident Manager, noted the current “exponential growth in cases and the opportunity to move disease or infection from one part of the country to another “.

“One of our concerns is that people during the Christmas season will flock together and they may be bringing the infection with them to that little gathering and not even know it,” Dr. Walke said.

Residents line their cars at a COVID-19 testing center on the Miller Park grounds on November 17, 2020 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Getty)

The numbers are going in the wrong direction across the country, according to a CNN analysis of data from Johns Hopkins University.

Only one US state, Hawaii, shows a decrease in new cases of more than 10 percent compared to the previous week.

Another five – Idaho, North Dakota, Iowa, Illinois and Arkansa – are stable, while the remaining 44 states show increases in new cases of at least 10 percent compared to the previous week.

Nationally, the seven-day average of new cases is at its highest: 161,165 cases a day. That’s 27 percent more compared to last week.

According to data from Johns Hopkins University, at least 11.6 million infections have been reported in the US and more than 251,000 people have died.

Thanksgiving week will be essential

The end of the pandemic may be in sight thanks to the good news about vaccine candidatesBut things are likely to get worse before they get better, according to Admiral Brett Giroir, deputy health secretary for the Department of Health and Human Services.

He said he will seek an emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration “in a few days.”

Pedestrians walk past Pfizer’s world headquarters on November 9, 2020, in New York. (AP)
Pfizer’s analysis came just days after an independent vaccine manufacturer, Moderna, published the first data showing that its vaccine was 94.5% effective.

Admiral Giroir told CNN he was optimistic about the potential of two seemingly effective vaccines, calling it “our end game.”

“That said … this will get worse,” he said.

How bad it gets will be determined by the Thanksgiving celebrations next week.

Health officials and local leaders have warned against traditional holiday gatherings, saying they will likely help drive the surge in cases further.

But Americans can make the holidays a tipping point by masking themselves and following other safety precautions, the Infectious Diseases Society of America said Wednesday.

“Virtual meetings remain the safest way to bring friends and family together from distant points,” the group said.

Outdoor environments can reduce the risks of meetings with people outside your home.

“We have the resources and the knowledge to stop the spread of this pandemic.

“Keeping our common cause and shared well-being at the forefront of our Christmas celebrations will make a difference.”

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy told CNN that he wanted people to stay with their immediate family on Thanksgiving and for the gatherings to be small “not just for next Thursday … but for the next few days. months. “

“This is not a normal year, this is not a normal Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Years,” Governor Murphy said.

“People have to stay small, stay inside the bubble of their own loved ones, and if we do that, it will be a down payment for a normal Christmas season next year.”

Record hospitalizations reported on Wednesday

79,410 hospitalizations were reported Wednesday, a record for the United States, according to the COVID Tracking Project.

The country now averages 72,120 hospitalizations in the past seven days, an increase of 19.76 percent compared to last week.

As hospitalizations rise, the nation’s healthcare systems have been strained, prompting some of its workers to plead with Americans to do whatever they can to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

A healthcare worker cares for a patient in the COVID-19 Unit at United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas. (AFP via Getty Images)

“As a healthcare provider, we are 250 days away from having a COVID-19 patient in our ICU right now,” said Dr. Nathan Hatton, a lung specialist at the University of Utah Hospital.

“So every day, you walk into work, someone is very sick, someone is potentially dying that day.”

“We recognized early on that this was going to be a marathon, and you know, we’re at mile 13,” said Dr. Austin Simonson, an internal medicine specialist at Sanford Medical Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Dr. Clarissa Barnes, an internal medicine physician at Avera Health in Sioux Falls, said the hardest thing for her has been witnessing so much pain from families losing loved ones to COVID-19.

“On a normal day, I don’t have people who die every day,” Dr. Barnes said, adding that the first week three people died in one day, two of them from COVID-19.

“The amount of palpable pain that you can feel from those family members, the crying that remains etched in your soul, every time someone dies stays with us forever,” he said.

“So I care about family members and friends and all these people who knew this person.

“But I also worry about us. Witnessing so much pain for long periods of time is very, very difficult.”

New restrictions issued in the US

Students in the nation’s largest school district are transitioning to remote learning Thursday after the closure of New York City schools.

The decision was made after the city’s trial infection rate reached 3 percent, a threshold that Mayor Bill de Blasio said would trigger such a shutdown.

Teacher Melissa Wong packs up the classroom in New York that she appropriated for virtual teaching. (Getty)

Wisconsin was one of the first states to be hit hard by this round of waves. On Wednesday, Gov. Tony Evers announced that he would declare a new state of emergency and extend the state’s public health emergency through January.

Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear also announced new measures that go into effect Friday, including limiting social gatherings to a maximum of two people from no more than two households and a ban on indoor service for restaurants and bars.

And starting Monday, schools should start distance learning, the governor said.

In Minnesota, the governor said the state is at a “breaking point” and announced a four-week setback that “will help prevent more families from losing a loved one and ensure that our hospitals can treat those who become ill. “.

As of Friday, gatherings that include people from more than one household are prohibited, while bars and restaurants will only be able to operate takeout and home delivery services.

Gyms, entertainment venues and event spaces will also close.

“As hospitals approach the crisis of turning away new patients, continuing as things are is simply not sustainable,” said Gov. Tim Walz.

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