US could see 100,000 new coronavirus cases per day, expert warns

1 July 2020, 00:08

Dr Anthony Fauci expressed his concern at the worsening coronavirus outbreak in the US
Dr Anthony Fauci expressed his concern at the worsening coronavirus outbreak in the US. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

The US could begin seeing 100,000 new coronavirus cases per day, the country's leading infectious diseases expert has warned.

Dr Anthony Fauci told the US Senate he "would not be surprised" if the US reaches the grim milestone of 100,000 Covid-19 infections per day.

The director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases warned the daily surge in cases, which has now reached 40,000, could more than double if American citizens ignore public health recommendations.

"I think it is important to tell and you the American public that I'm very concerned because it could get very bad," he said.

"Clearly we are not in control right now," Dr Fauci testified, while also warning that too few US citizens are wearing masks or social distancing.

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Asked to forecast the outcome of recent surges in some states, Dr Fauci said he cannot make an accurate prediction, but believes it will be "very disturbing."

"We are now having forty-plus-thousand new cases a day. I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day if this does not turn around, and so I am very concerned," he added.

Dr Fauci said areas seeing recent outbreaks are putting the entire nation at risk, including cities and states that have made progress in reducing the number of coronavirus cases.

He cited recent video footage of people socialising in crowds, often without masks, and otherwise ignoring safety guidelines.

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It comes after Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden condemned Mr Trump's "historic mismanagement" of the pandemic.

Speaking in his hometown, Delaware, Mr Biden accused the president of "outright ignoring the crisis" following a rise in positive infections and lockdown measures being reintroduced in California, Texas and Florida.

Cases of the disease have more than doubled in at least 10 states, while there has been an epicentre detected in the USA's second-largest city, Los Angeles.

So far, more than 127,000 Americans have died after contracting Covid-19, while more than 2.6 million have tested positive for the virus.

Meanwhile, millions have lost their jobs after the shutdown of businesses and schools.

America's economy drastically contracted in the first quarter and is likely to plummet once again between April and June.