US COVID-19 deaths near 190,000; Iowa and South Dakota emerge as new hotspots

US COVID-19 deaths near 190,000; Iowa and South Dakota emerge as new hotspots

Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Hayward
FILE PHOTO: An ambulance crew transports a patient to Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center, where 7 deaths and 65 confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) among its staff and patients were reported, in Hayward, California, U.S. April 10, 2020. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

WASHINGTON: Coronavirus deaths in the United States topped 190,000 on Wednesday (Sep 9) along with a spike in new cases in the US Midwest with states like Iowa and South Dakota emerging as the new hotspots in the past few weeks.

Iowa currently has one of the highest rates of infection in the nation, with 15 per cent of tests last week coming back positive. Nearby South Dakota has a positive test rate of 19 per cent and North Dakota is at 18 per cent, according to a Reuters analysis.

The surge in Iowa and South Dakota is being linked to colleges reopening in Iowa and an annual motorcycle rally last month in Sturgis, South Dakota.

Kansas, Idaho and Missouri are also among the top 10 states for positive test rates.

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New coronavirus infections have fallen for seven weeks in a row for the United States with a death rate of about 6,100 per week from COVID-19 in the last month.

On a per capita basis, the United States ranks 12th in the world for the number of deaths, with 58 deaths per 100,000 people, and 11th in the world for cases, with 1,933 cases per 100,000 residents, according to a Reuters analysis.

US confirmed cases are highest in the world with now over 6.3 million followed by India with 4.4 million cases and Brazil with 4.2 million. The US death toll is also the highest in the world.

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The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had forecast last month that the US death toll will reach 200,000 to 211,000 by Sep 26.

The University of Washington's health institute last week forecasted that the US deaths from the coronavirus will reach 410,000 by the end of the year.

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Source: Reuters/ga/ec