US nears 3M cases, still 'knee-deep' in 1st wave, Fauci says: 4 COVID-19 updates

The U.S. is nearing another COVID-19 milestone: nearly 3 million COVID-19 cases have been reported, less than a month after hitting 2 million cases June 10.

Four updates:

1. The U.S. is still "knee-deep" in its first COVID-19 wave, Anthony Fauci, MD, said July 6, according to CBS News. Dr. Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an online interview that he didn't necessarily consider the current case increase to be a new wave, but instead "a surge or a resurgence of infections superimposed upon a baseline." Immediate action must be taken to combat the rising cases, Dr. Fauci said.

2. Many cities still lack testing capacity and are implementing testing restrictions, according to The New York Times. New Orleans, Phoenix and San Antonio have imposed new testing limitations, such as only testing symptomatic individuals. Some officials said supply shortages, backlogs at labs and increasing COVID-19 cases were all contributing factors. "It's terrifying, and clearly an evidence of a failure of the system," said Morgan Katz, MD, infectious disease expert at Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins Hospital.

3. It's crucial that Americans continue to wear a face mask, maintain physical distancing and wash their hands regularly to stop COVID-19's spread, the American Medical Association, American Hospital Association and American Nurses Association wrote in an open letter to the public July 6. "We are not powerless in this public health crisis," the groups wrote. "What is certain — and what the science and evidence are telling us — is that COVID-19 is not behind us and we must resist confusing reopening with returning to normalcy."

4. More states are implementing face mask mandates amid surging case counts. West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice signed an executive order July 6 that requires all residents age 9 and up to wear face coverings in indoor public places. Texas, Oregon, Kansas, Washington and Pennsylvania also issued new or updated mask requirements in July, according to USA Today.

Snapshot of COVID-19 in the U.S.

Cases: 2,938,750
Deaths: 130,310
Recovered: 924,148

Counts reflect data available as of 8:20 a.m. CDT July 7.

More articles on public health:
Rare, brain-eating infection confirmed in Florida
22 states where COVID-19 is spreading fastest, slowest: July 6
Bubonic plague case confirmed in China

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