Half a million Americans could die of Covid by end of February, study forecasts

Half a million Americans could die of Covid by end of February, study forecasts

The coronavirus pandemic is set to cause half a million deaths in the US by February with Covid-19 on course to ravage states across America throughout the coming winter, a new study has forecast.

More than 511,000 lives could be lost by 28 February next year, modeling led by scientists from the University of Washington found. This means that with cases surging in many states, particularly the upper midwest, what appears to be a third major peak of coronavirus infections in the US could lead to nearly 300,000 people dying in just the next four months.

The US recorded 71,671 new cases of coronavirus on Thursday, with several states setting records across the midwest and west, amid the autumn surge.

The news came as Anthony Fauci, the top public health official on the White House coronavirus taskforce, said Donald Trump has not met with the taskforce “for several months” and the body itself meets less frequently than it did earlier in the pandemic, despite the fact that outbreak is not yet under control.

And while AstraZeneca resumed US trials of its experimental Covid-19 vaccine and Johnson & Johnson noted that it had the go-ahead to resume its trial soon, too, no successful US vaccine has yet been announced and the Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden, warned of a “dark winter” ahead amid the pandemic.