7 'Out of Control' States Heading Toward Lockdown
Yesterday, President Donald Trump admitted that the pandemic is likely to "get worse before it gets better." The latest COVID-19 statistics across the country certainly confirm his prediction. For the first time in two weeks, on Tuesday, at least 1,000 Americans died as a result of the highly infectious virus in a single day. Even scarier? According to Johns Hopkins University data, a quarter of all days this year have seen a US death toll exceeding 1,000. As fatalities, hospitalizations, as the number of infections continue to rise in many states, at least 27 have paused reopening plans or tightened restrictions in order to flatten the curve. A few states in particular are still being hit harder than others, and might be headed toward total lockdown. Click through to discover which ones.
California, which has been experiencing a frightening surge of COVID-19 cases, has toppled New York (whose numbers have been going down) as the state with the most confirmed coronavirus cases in the United States. As of Tuesday, California had recorded 409,305 infections while New York is at 408,181, per Johns Hopkins University. According to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), 69 percent of those infected with the virus in the state are under the age of 49. Hospitalization rates have also increased, up 15 percent over the past two weeks. After reclosing most indoor operations last week, the state is on the verge of completely shutting down once again. "We have our finger on the dimmer switch and we're not afraid to use it," Mark Ghaly, California's secretary of Health and Human Services, said during a Tuesday briefing.
Nevada shattered a few records on Tuesday, according to data from the state Department of Health and Human Services. Not only did they experience their highest number of deaths in a single day, 28 (26 of which were in Clark County, home of Las Vegas), but also their highest number of hospitalizations as a result of the virus. On June 25, Gov. Steve Sisolak ordered all businesses to require staff and customers to wear a mask indoors, also encouraging the use of masked outdoors when social distancing is not possible. In early July Governor Steve Sisolak signed an emergency directive extending phase two of the state's COVID recovery plan through the end of July. In mid-July, he ordered the closure of bars in 7 counties.
While Oregon has managed to keep their infections much lower than most states, they recently started breaking their own records. On Tuesday the Oregon Health Authority announced seven new deaths, tying the state's previous April 28 and July 14 records for the most deaths reported in a single day. Last week they set their record for most cases in a single day, with 437 infections reported on Thursday.
Since reopening, Tennessee is one of the many southern states experiencing a surge in coronavirus infections. According to the Tennessee Department of Health on Tuesday, July 21 the state reported 2,190 new cases, bringing the state to 81,944 total cases—a 3% day-to-day increase since Monday. Their seven-day new cases also increased, as did hospitalizations. Nashville mayor John Cooper has ordered restaurants and other businesses that serve alcohol in Nashville and Davidson County—their most populous region—to close by 10 p.m. daily beginning Friday.
Florida, one of the first states to reopen, continues to break coronavirus records. On Tuesday, 136 deaths were reported, bringing their total to 5,319. According to the Associated Press, the state, which has seen their weekly death average rise over the past 10 days, has the highest death rate in the country. They also experienced a record high number of hospitalizations as a result of the virus, with 518 admissions, according to data from the Florida Department of Health. According to ACHA, just 23 percent of hospital beds and 17 percent of ICU beds are open statewide. "As long as the cases continue at this current rate, you know things will continue to move in the wrong direction and we will most likely see hospitalizations and deaths increase," Jennifer Tolbert, the director of state health reform at Kaiser Family Foundation, told the Tampa Bay Times. The situation is "totally out of control," said Donna Shalala, a Democratic representative.
After Gov. Doug Ducey lifted a stay-at-home order in mid-May, Arizona quickly emerged as a national coronavirus hotspot. Currently the hospitals are experiencing near-capacity volume, with 83% capacity and 85% of their ICU beds filled. Their daily death toll is also trending high, with hospitals in the state requesting refrigerated morgues last week due to the surge.
As of Tuesday, Texas, one of the first states to reopen in May, had experienced 351,071 Covid-19 cases and 4,199 deaths as of Tuesday afternoon, according to Johns Hopkins University data. Though Gov. Greg Abbott paused reopening in June and implemented a mask requirement in July, due to the state's record breaking infection rates, the state has continued on a frightening path. In addition to major outbreaks in Dallas and Houston, South Texas is currently experiencing a major surge of cases, with hospitals at capacity. "It's a tsunami what we're seeing right now," Dr. Federico Vallejo, a critical care pulmonologist, told CNN. Vallejo said he's treating nearly 50 to 60 patients a day, sometimes caring for up to 70. Normally he sees just 15 to 20 patients a day. Despite the state's critical situation, the governor is staunchly against issuing stay-at-home orders, even banning local officials from doing so.
How to Avoid COVID-19 In Your State
To stay healthy no matter where you live, get tested if you think you have COVID-19, avoid crowds (and bars, and house parties), wear a face mask, practice social distancing, only run essential errands, wash your hands regularly, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 37 Places You're Most Likely to Catch Coronavirus.