Some Americans are now paying for what they did at Thanksgiving and are sick with COVID-19. Health officials warn people not to make the same mistakes during the Christmas and New Year seasons.
“This is a surge that surpasses the existing surge,” said Ali Mokdad, a professor of health index science at the University of Washington in Seattle. “Honestly, this is a warning sign for all of us.”
Nationwide, contact tracers and emergency room doctors said they interacted with people outside their families at Thanksgiving, despite public health warnings to stay home and stay away from others. I have heard repeatedly from new coronavirus patients.
The virus had been rampant across the country before Thanksgiving, but showed signs of leveling off. Since then, it has gained momentum, with more than 200,000 new cases per day on a regular basis.
Even when the United States is at stake in a major vaccination campaign against COVID-19, the outlook is dire. The Food and Drug Administration is expected to give final approval at any time to use Pfizer’s formula for the murdered tragedy. 290,000 Americans and more than 15.6 million were infected.
The average number of deaths in the United States is about 2,260 per day, much like the peak seen in mid-April when New York City was besieged. According to the Associated Press analysis, based on a two-week moving average, new cases are running at around 195,000 per day, an increase of 16% from the day before Thanksgiving.
In Washington, contact tracers counted at least 336 people who tested positive for attending or traveling to rallies on Thanksgiving weekends. More are expected.
The virus may still be in culture in those exposed on their way home on Sunday after Thanksgiving. The end of the two-week incubation period is this Sunday.
Xana Cooper, a 60-year-old cancer survivor in Murita, California, was COVID-19 positive after attending a Thanksgiving dinner with her son’s girlfriend’s family. At dinner, my girlfriend’s father, who recently traveled to Florida, felt sick and went to bed early.
Cooper learned that he had tested positive the next Sunday.
“My first reaction was f-word. I was very angry,” she said. “I was upset. I was angry. I was like,” How do you take my life in your hands? “
She has fever and headaches, runny nose and red eye, and has recently had difficulty breathing and is using an inhaler. She said she believed she had brought the virus back to her daughter and her two grandchildren. They live with her and are currently ill with a doctor’s diagnosis of COVID-19.
In Philadelphia, a woman in her twenties gathered with 10 relatives for Thanksgiving, but the day before she wasn’t feeling well. She later tested positive for COVID-19. Her family began to develop symptoms and seven members were positive, said Dr. Thomas Farley, Philadelphia Health Commissioner.
The next round of festivals could create even more cases. This week, a wall-wide holiday has begun. Hanukkah begins on Thursday night, ends on December 18, followed by Christmas, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s Eve.
“It’s not time to invite neighbors to dinner, it’s not time to start a party,” said Dr. Joshua Labea, a researcher at Arizona State University.
In some parts of New York, contact tracers regularly hear from newly infected people that they attended Thanksgiving celebrations, said Darlen Smith, director of public health in Steuben County. She said it is still unknown how many they will be infected and how many will eventually need beds in the intensive care unit.
“It’s a domino effect,” Smith said.
Harry and Ashley Nadig in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, tested positive for COVID-19 last week. They believed they had contracted it from someone for their job as a security guard, but said they didn’t know about their possible exposure before celebrating Thanksgiving on both sides of the family.
On Tuesday after Thanksgiving, 25-year-old Ashley Nadig noticed that she couldn’t smell the menthol-scented body scrub. After the couple took the test, they contacted their family to warn them. Some were waiting for test results, and so far no one has any symptoms, Harry Nadig, 24 said.
“We feel sick, because … we should have put more weight on our decision to go,” he said. “We should have told our families,’Hey, given the nature of our work, we can’t quarantine like others in office work.’ “
“You might want to see it again before you go to Christmas,” he added.
The surge across the country overwhelmed hospitals, tired and depressed nurses and other health care workers.
“Compassionate fatigue is the best word we have experienced,” said Kiersten Henry, ICU Nurse Practitioner at the MedStar Montgomery Medical Center in Olney, Maryland. “We feel we are already running a marathon. This is our second marathon. Even bright people feel debilitated at this point.”
Some hospitals are struggling to find beds for use in treating patients and to remodel storage rooms and other locations, but they are also dealing with a serious staff shortage.
“We know how to make a new bed,” said Dr. Liu Kaplan, a critical care surgeon at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine. “I don’t know how to create a new staff.”
New York AP data journalist Nicky Forster and Associated Press writer Marion Renault in Rochester, Minnesota contributed to this report.
Copyright 2020 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Americans paying for Thanksgiving
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