By MORGAN WINSOR and ERIN SCHUMAKER, ABC News
(NEW YORK) — A pandemic of the novel coronavirus has now killed more than 1 million people worldwide.
Over 37.6 million people across the globe have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new respiratory virus, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The criteria for diagnosis — through clinical means or a lab test — has varied from country-to-country. Still, the actual numbers are believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases and suspicions that some national governments are hiding or downplaying the scope of their outbreaks.
Since the first cases were detected in China in December, the virus has rapidly spread to every continent except Antarctica.
The United States is the worst-affected country, with more than 7.7 million diagnosed cases and at least 214,771 deaths.
California has the most cases of any U.S. state, with more than 855,000 people diagnosed, according to Johns Hopkins data. California is followed by Texas and Florida, with over 818,000 cases and over 736,000 cases, respectively.
More than 190 vaccine candidates for COVID-19 are being tracked by the World Health Organization, at least 10 of which are in crucial phase three studies. Of those 10 potential vaccines in late-stage trials, there are currently five that will be available in the United States if approved.
– Up to half of US COVID-19 deaths could have been prevented, research letter says
– Highest rise in COVID-19 cases reported in the last 4 days: WHO
– HHS whistleblower says public should not trust White House on COVID-19
– Analysis shows cases rising in 32 states plus DC
– UK prime minister outlines 3-tier lockdown system for England
Here’s how the news is developing today. All times Eastern.
Oct 12, 4:23 pm
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear, who is in quarantine after possible COVID-19 exposure, said he’s doing well during a Monday news conference. “I feel great. My family feels great. We’re trying to be really positive about this situation,” he said.
The governor reminded the public to adhere to fundamental public health measures like mask wearing and social distancing. “Folks, wear it,” he said of face coverings. “It’s a requirement in Kentucky. The more you wear them, the less the virus will spread.”
Beshear and his family are in quarantine after possible exposure to COVID-19, which the governor’s office announced Sunday. A member of Beshear’s security detail had tested positive on Saturday, according to the governor’s office.
Oct 12, 2:31 pm
Up to half of COVID-19 deaths in the United States could have been prevented, according to a research letter published in JAMA Monday.
The research relies on modeling, meaning it is an estimation by scientists that’s subject to change as we discover more about the virus and not an official count of preventable deaths.
The researchers sited weak public health infrastructure and the United States’ “decentralized, inconsistent” response to the pandemic as key factors driving preventable deaths and noted that the U.S. population is on the younger side but includes a disproportionate number of citizens with comorbidities.
Oct 12, 1:42 pm
World Health Organization Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned that achieving herd immunity is not a viable strategy for stemming the spread of coronavirus.
Less than 10% of the world’s population has been infected with the virus, according to WHO, meaning that most individuals are still susceptible to the disease. Among those who have been exposed, there are many unknowns, including how high the immune response is after infection, how long it protects, and what the long-term impacts of infection are.
Worldwide COVID-19 cases continue to increase, with the highest rise occurring in the last four days, according to WHO. As of Monday, there had been 37.6 million infections worldwide according to Johns Hopkins University.
Oct 12, 1:14 pm
Whistleblower Rick Bright, the federal vaccine expert who was ousted from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services after he lodged a complaint against the Trump Administration earlier this year, said that the public should not trust the White House when it comes to information about the coronavirus, during an interview with ABC’s The View on Monday.
“We need to hear directly from the scientists at the CDC, at the FDA and at the NIH,” Bright said. “Public health guidelines have been disparaged and ignored,” he added, referring to the White House.
“This is why we have 215,000 dead Americans today. This is why we have up to 50,000 new infections today. This is why we’re going to have terrible winter if we don’t do something now to turn around the rhetoric, tell people the truth.”
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