HealthDay News — The United States reached two promising pandemic milestones on Monday: COVID-19 deaths dropped below 300 a day and 150 million Americans are now fully vaccinated.
COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death in America in 2020, behind only heart disease and cancer, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But as the pandemic loosens its grip on this country, it has fallen down the list of the biggest killers, the Associated Press reported. CDC data suggest that more Americans are now dying every day from accidents, chronic lower respiratory diseases, strokes, or Alzheimer disease than from COVID-19, the wire service said.
The statistics should get even better as vaccination rates continue to rise: About 45 percent of the U.S. population has been fully vaccinated, according to the CDC, while more than 53 percent of Americans have received at least one dose of the vaccine. But U.S. demand for shots has slumped in recent weeks.
In New York, which was crippled by the coronavirus in the spring of 2020, Gov. Andrew Cuomo tweeted on Monday that the state had 10 new deaths. At the peak of the outbreak in New York, nearly 800 people a day were dying from the coronavirus, the AP said. On the flip side, Missouri leads the nation in per-capita COVID-19 cases and is fourth behind California, Florida, and Texas in the number of new cases per day during the past week despite its significantly smaller population, the AP reported. COVID-19 hospitalizations in Southwest Missouri have risen 72 percent since the beginning of the month.
The fall will likely bring new waves of infection, but they will be concentrated in places with low vaccination rates, Amber D’Souza, Ph.D., a professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, told the AP.