US COVID-19 deaths top 41,000 as protesters demand restrictions end

Tuesday, 21 April 2020 01:55 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Reuters: US coronavirus deaths topped 41,000 yesterday, according to a Reuters tally, as more protesters gathered in State capitals to demand an early end to the lockdowns, while officials advised caution until more testing becomes available.

Stay-at-home measures, which experts say are essential to slow the spread of the virus, have ground the economy to a virtual standstill and forced more than 22 million people to apply for unemployment benefits in the last month.

The United States has by far the world’s largest number of confirmed coronavirus cases, with more than 756,000 infections and over 41,150 deaths, nearly half of them in the state of New York, according to a Reuters tally.

US cases and deaths tend to fall during weekends, and deaths increased by about 1,500 on Sunday and 1,800 on Saturday, according to a Reuters tally. Last week, the US had a record 2,806 deaths in a single day on Wednesday.

On Sunday, cases rose by 24,000, the smallest number since 30 March after recently rising by about 30,000 cases a day, according to a Reuters tally. However, hot spots are emerging in Chicago, Boston and Philadelphia.

President Donald Trump, a Republican seeking re-election in November, appeared to encourage protesters who want to reopen now with a series of Twitter posts on Friday calling for them to “LIBERATE” Michigan, Minnesota and Virginia, all run by Democratic governors. Republican lawmakers in several states have also backed the protests.

Health experts and lawmakers on the front lines of the battle to curb the pandemic have warned that the country could face a second and even deadlier wave of infections if the lockdowns end prematurely.