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article imageTexas becomes first state to surpass one million COVID-19 cases

By Karen Graham     Nov 11, 2020 in Health
Following weeks of rapid climbs in Covid-19 infections and hospitalizations, Governors are asking residents to stay home in hopes of curbing the spread of the virus. The announcements come as Texas became the first U.S. state to surpass a million cases.
Texas, our second most populous state behind California, now has the dubious distinction of having reached 1,010,364 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University’s Coronavirus Resource Center.
California - which has a quarter more people than the Lone Star state, reached 977,218 cases on November 9, according to the state's Department of Public Health. The state has 18,066 deaths from the virus and a 4.86 percent positivity rate, which is inching up.
"People are letting their guard down by taking their masks off," California Gov. Gavin Newsom said earlier this week, per CNN. "They're starting to get together, outside of their household cohorts."
The rampant surge in cases in Texas is so bad that in El Paso, one of the hardest-hit communities in the country, officials have requested four more trailers to add to six mobile morgues already on the ground, as cases and hospitalizations spike. Texas has 19,337 deaths from the virus as of today and a 10.55 percent positivity rate, which is high.
"I've seen more death in the last three weeks than I've seen in a year," one registered nurse told CNN affiliate KFOX. "I've done compressions on more people in the last three weeks than I have in a year."
Second wave lockdowns coming
With daily case counts in the U.S. exceeding 100,000 for seven straight days, it is not surprising that there has been a rise in cases in all 50 states. This has resulted in nearly half of the states showing signs that a second lockdown may be in order.
Governors in many states have issued new restrictions on restaurants and bars, and some have even issued curfews in order to stem the number of new infections.
A health care worker tends to a patient in the COVID-19 unit at United Memorial Medical Center in Ho...
A health care worker tends to a patient in the COVID-19 unit at United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas -- one of the US states struggling the most to curb the spread of the coronavirus
MARK FELIX, AFP
Several states have also imposed "stay at home" orders. Utah Governor Gary Herbert issued an executive order Sunday declaring a state of emergency and placing the entire state under a mask mandate and limiting social gatherings to household-only until November 23, citing rapid spread of the virus.
Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak is asking people to commit to a voluntary plan he calls "Stay at Home 2.0" in the next two weeks in efforts to push a "significant reversal of the current trends" in the state.
"We have to go back to the basics," the governor said, encouraging businesses to return to telecommuting as much as possible and asking residents to avoid hosting groups of people over for dinners, parties and other gatherings.
Wisconsin's Governor Tony Evers announced Tuesday he's signed a new order advising people to "stay home to save lives."
"It's not safe to go out, it's not safe to have others over," he said. "Please, cancel the happy hours, dinner parties, sleepovers, and playdates at your home. And if a friend or family member invites you over, offer to hang out virtually instead.
All these new steps and warnings should not come as a surprise, because, after all, the public has been given plenty of warnings about what will happen if we do not abide by simple public health measures, such as wearing a facemask, social distancing and avoiding crowds.
"By the time that the Biden-Harris administration takes over, this virus is going to have already run rampant through the communities across the United States," Dr. Megan Ranney, an emergency physician at Brown University, said Sunday.
"We're just heading into the very worst of this pandemic," Ranney said. "We're about to see all of these little epidemics across the country, crossed and mixed, and it's going to be an awful lot like pouring gasoline on a fire."
More about Covid19, Texas, one million cases, second most populous state, stay at home
 
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