Americans have been patiently and steadfastly practicing their social distancing, hoping that their diligence will soon pay off.
If we just stay away from one another for long enough, this infernal virus will starve itself to death and we can get back to birthday parties, baseball games, and the local dive bar. As of now, social distancing is our only weapon against COVID-19, and this means that stabilizing the spread is a slow process where your efforts don’t come to fruition for days or weeks.
Given the data that we’ve received today, there is reason to believe that the peak of the madness may be here.
U.S. coronavirus deaths increased by a record number for the second day in a row, rising by at least 2,371 on Wednesday to top 30,800, according to a Reuters tally, as states spared the worst of the pandemic mulled a partial lifting of restrictions on business and social life by May 1.
The United States recorded its first coronavirus fatality on Feb. 29. It took 38 days to reach 10,000 deaths and just nine more days to go from 10,000 fatalities to 30,000. The previous high single-day death toll was 2,364 on Tuesday.
U.S. confirmed cases topped 635,000 in the United States and 2 million globally.
And while these numbers appear daunting and grim, there was hope on the horizon.
New York state and some other hard-hit areas continue to report sharp decreases in hospitalizations and numbers of patients on ventilators, although front-line healthcare workers and resources remained under extraordinary stress.
The news shouldn’t be taken as a reason to fully relax just yet, as a second wave of coronavirus could swell up in the coming weeks on account of a sudden relapse in our behavior.