US hits grim 700,000 COVID-19 death toll milestone

The United States hit a grim milestone and surpassed 700,000 coronavirus deaths on Friday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

That figure is more than the number of Americans who died during World War I, World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined 

To put the figure into context, it is about equivalent to the populations of Nashville, Tennessee or Washington, DC, and just a bit smaller than the population of Denver, Colorado.

More than 4.7 million people have died from COVID-19 around the world, according to Johns Hopkins, which means the U.S. accounts for 14.8 percent of all deaths, but just five percent of the global population.

The heartbreaking figures come exactly three-and-a-half months after America recorded 600,000 lives lost due to the virus. 

It comes as coronavirus cases continue to fall in America to the lowest levels seen in more than a month and, although deaths are on the rise, they are expected to also decline over the next few weeks. 

On Friday, the U.S. surpassed 700,000 coronavirus deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Pictured: Pictured: Caskets are seen with full of COVID-19 dead bodies at the Gerard J. Neufeld funeral home in Queens, New York, April 2020

Although the first deaths from the virus in the U.S. weren’t reported until February 2020, it was confirmed last month that the earliest death actually took place on January 9, 2020.

It took until May to reach the first 100,000 dead. The toll hit 200,000 deaths in September and 300,000 in December.

Then it took just over a month to go from 300,000 to 400,000 and about two months to climb from 400,000 to the brink of 500,000.

The death rate has dramatically slowed, taking four months and one week to hit 600,000 deaths.

It took about three-and-a-half months to hit the 700,000 mark.

As devastating as that 700,000 figure is, the true death toll is believed to be higher than official counts. 

Currently, black Americans account for 11.9 percent of all COVID-19 deaths, Hispanics for 26.9 percent, whites for 51.5 percent and Asians at 3.1 percent, each figure about equal to their share of the U.S. population.

However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that after adjusting for age and other factors, blacks and Latinos are between two and three times more likely to die of of COVID-19 than whites. 

The news comes as overall Covid cases are on the decline.

On Thursday, the U.S. reported 110,060 new infections, with a seven-day rolling average of 112,792.

This a 32 percent decline from the 166,113 average reported four wees ago and the lowest figure seen since early August, according to a DailyMail.com analysis.

Deaths have recently been on the rise with 2,718 virus-related fatalities recorded on Thursday and a seven-day rolling average of 2,043.

This is a 45 percent increase from the 1,401 average deaths recorded on month ago.    

A new CDC ensemble forecast predicts that weekly deaths will fall to as low as 5,300 by the week ending October 23, a decline from the current weekly total of 14,000

A new CDC ensemble forecast predicts that weekly deaths will fall to as low as 5,300 by the week ending October 23, a decline from the current weekly total of 14,000

However, a new forecast from the CDC predicts that, similarly to cases, COVID-19 deaths will decline over the next month for the first time since June. 

Published on Wednesday, the ‘ensemble’ forecast combines 37 independent forecasts of coronavirus fatalities over the next four weeks into one projection.

The CDC model predicts that weekly Covid deaths will fall to as low as 5,300 by the week ending October 23.

This is a 62 percent drop from the 14,000 weekly total being recorded now and a promising sign that the fourth wave is coming to an end as the U.S. comes close to eclipsing 700,000 deaths. 

It also marks the first time since June 23 that the forecast has predicted weekly deaths to decrease rather than increase. 

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