20 states record jump in COVID-19 cases, US hits predicted 100k deaths five days early

May 28, 2020

The reopening of America takes place as at least 20 states are still seeing case counts rise, including Georgia, which was the first state to end stay-at-home orders at the beginning of this month. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, case counts in the state rose 26% for the week ending on May 18 compared with the previous week. 

Health officials said it's too soon to tell if the uptick represents a new wave of cases related to reopening, or if the cases reflect more testing being conducted across the state. COVID-19 cases recorded the week of May 18 may have been diagnosed up to two weeks prior, the Georgia Department of Public Health said. 

Other states tracking a weekly jump in cases include Alabama (28%), Missouri (27%) and North Carolina (26%). The Bay Area has recorded a case spike of 40% in the counties around San Francisco, which have been loosening physical distancing restrictions, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. 

Though the CDC had recommended states not embark on reopening their economies until case counts have declined for at least 14 days, many states reopened in the midst of increased testing, or the testing of backlogged samples, which could skew the timeline of the virus in each region. 

Johns Hopkins University has recorded 1,699,933 US cases, including more than 100,442 deaths. This means the US hit the 100,000 coronavirus-related fatalities five days before the CDC predicted the nation would hit that milestone. 

About half of Americans—49%—would receive a COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available, according to a new Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll. Thirty-one percent polled said they were not sure if they'd get vaccinated, while one in five said they would outright refuse the vaccine.

Among those saying no to the vaccine, about 70% cited safety reasons. 

The nation's leaders, including President Donald Trump, have applauded an accelerated vaccine development program, with the goal of having a usable vaccine by January 2021. Sixty-two percent of Democrats polled, compared with 43% of Republicans, said they plan on getting a vaccine when one becomes available. Older people, for whom serious complications from COVID-19 is more of a threat, were also more likely to say they’d get a vaccine: 67% of people 60 and older say they’d get vaccinated, compared with 40% who are younger. 

CIDRAP has the report

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