And in a dozen of those states — Vermont, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Iowa, Ohio, Colorado, Michigan, Nebraska, Kansas, Pennsylvania and New York — infections have spiked in the last two weeks, meaning there has been a 100 percent or more increase in confirmed cases over 14 days.
The White House coronavirus task force bluntly stated in its latest weekly report that there is "now aggressive, unrelenting, expanding broad community spread across the country, reaching most counties, without evidence of improvement but rather, further deterioration."
The task force report, obtained by NBC News, warned that current efforts to stop the spread "are inadequate and must be increased to flatten the curve" and that the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday has the potential to "amplify transmission considerably."
With so many new cases, hospitals across the country — and the doctors treating the deluge of new patients — were reaching the breaking point.
"Every day, we seem to break our record for total number of new patients," Dr. Jeff Pothof, University of Wisconsin Hospital emergency room doctor and chief quality officer, said on MSNBC. "We're all tired. Everyone is tired. We're all doing our best. Medicine is a team sport, but we need some help. Things are not going well for us."
In other coronavirus news: With President Donald Trump still refusing to concede his apparent election loss to Joe Biden, the CEOs of the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association and the American Nurses Association wrote a letter to the president urging his administration to "work closely with the Biden transition team to share all critical information related to Covid-19." Their letter came a day after President-elect Biden told NBC's Geoff Bennett that "more people may die" if the Trump administration continues to obstruct the smooth transfer of power.
So far the Trump Administration has not told Biden's coronavirus team "where the supplies are, how much of it the federal government has bought, how they might allocate it and what models they're using," Dr. Nicole Lurie, who served at the Department of Health and Human Services under former President Barack Obama, told NBC News. The mental health of the millions of Americans who lost their jobs due to the pandemic in being threatened by long-term unemployment. "I think it's pushing the edge of what people are able to handle," Ofer Sharone, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, said.
With potential lockdowns looming, the nation's major grocery store chains such as Kroger and Publix have started to limit in-store and online purchases of toilet paper, cleaning supplies, paper towels and other pandemic staples to reduce stress on supply chains.
There will be no Mardi Gras parades next year in New Orleans due to the pandemic, local media reported.
A wedding earlier this month near Spokane, Washington attended by some 300 people has been linked to at least 17 new cases of coronavirus, the Grant County Health District reported.
Country legend Dolly Parton's research fund helped bankroll the development of the Moderna vaccine. Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont echoed Pothof in a CNBC interview.
"My worry is going to be hospital personnel," Lamont said. "That's something we don't have as much control over, and last time we could borrow from states that had low infection rates. Today, there are no states with low infection rates."
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