California has overtaken New York for the highest number of coronavirus cases in the United States.
The most populous US state recorded 413,579 cases on Wednesday after adding a record 12,807 spike in new daily infections to its tally.
The state now has 5,000 more cases than New York – the original epicenter of the nation’s outbreak.
New York currently has 408,181 total infections throughout the state.
If California were a country, it would rank fifth in the world for total COVID-19 cases behind only the United States, Brazil, India and Russia.
Meanwhile, New York’s 32,520 deaths are still by far the highest total in the country and four times more than California’s tally of 7,870.
CALIFORNIA: The most populous US state recorded 413,579 cases as of Wednesday after adding a record 12,807 spike in new daily infections to its tally
California is by far the most populous US state, with nearly 40 million people, while New York has about 19.5 million.
Since its crush of cases earlier this year, New York state has gotten the virus under control.
California, however, initially succeeded in slowing the spread of the virus but has had a sharp reversal with COVID-19 infection rates climbing sharply in recent weeks.
California residents starting in March were urged to stay home as much as possible and state health orders shut down all but essential businesses such as grocery stores.
Throughout May and June, California reopened much of its economy, and people resumed shopping in stores and dining in restaurants.
The extent of reopening was evident in data that showed California’s unemployment rate fell in June as the state added a record 558,000 jobs.
But infections began to surge and a new round of business restrictions were imposed, including a ban on indoor dining in restaurants and bars.
California’s Governor Gavin Newsom last week rolled back some of his reopening plans for the state by announcing the closure of some indoor venues that attract crowds such as bars, restaurants, movie theaters, zoos and museums.
New York, the original epicenter of the US outbreak, currently has 408,181 total infections throughout the state
Meanwhile, New York’s 32,520 deaths are still by far the highest total in the country and four times more than California’s tally of 7,870
He also ordered gyms, churches and hair salons to close in the 30 hardest-hit counties of the state.
Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous with 10 million residents, reported that younger people were driving the spread of new infections.
More than half of the county’s new cases came from people under age 41 and the county’s COVID-19 deaths was at 4,154 with positive cases topping 161,670, the county’s Department of Public Health said.
‘The tragedy of what we are witnessing is that many of our younger residents are interacting with each other and not adhering to the recommended prevention measures, while our older residents continue to experience the results of this increased spread with the worst health outcomes, including death,’ said Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer.
US government data published on Tuesday found that reported and confirmed coronavirus cases vastly underestimate the true number of infections, echoing results from a smaller study last month.
The US also has had consistent testing failures that experts say contribute to an undercount of the actual virus rate.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study said true COVID-19 rates were more than 10 times higher than reported cases in most US regions from late March to early May.
It is based on COVID-19 antibody tests performed on routine blood samples in 16,000 people in 10 US regions.