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U.S. coronavirus death toll approaches 40,000 as more than 1,900 people die in 24 hours

The coronavirus death toll in the United States climbed by 1,903 in 24 hours to reach 39,115 on Saturday, latest statistics show.

Confirmed cases of the highly infectious illness also soared to a total of 741,866 as of early Sunday morning, up 28,486 from the day before.

The US has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths of any country in the world. Despite the ominous statistics, President Trump cited ‘positive signs’ in the fight against the pandemic on Saturday, believing the worst is now over. 

‘We continue to see a lot of positive signs that the virus has passed its peak,’ the President said, just days after the White House issued guidelines for the gradual reopening of the country. 

President Trump cited ‘positive signs’ in the fight against the pandemic on Saturday, claiming that he inherited ‘broken junk’ from the prior administration but has since turned the US into the ‘king of ventilators’

Confirmed cases of the highly infectious illness soared to a total of 741,866 as of early Sunday morning, meaning the US now has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths of any country in the world

Confirmed cases of the highly infectious illness soared to a total of 741,866 as of early Sunday morning, meaning the US now has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths of any country in the world

The coronavirus death toll in the United States climbed by 1,903 in the last 24 hours to reach 39,115 on Saturday

The coronavirus death toll in the United States climbed by 1,903 in the last 24 hours to reach 39,115 on Saturday

The number of new infections recorded in the last 24 hours across the country reached 28,486

The number of new infections recorded in the last 24 hours across the country reached 28,486

Trump said that Texas and Vermont will allow some business to re-open next week, with strict social distancing measures still being enforced.

Residents in Florida and other states returned to the beach Saturday despite an increase in COVID-19 deaths and infections. Meanwhile, three Northeastern states reopened boatyards and marinas for personal use only. 

Other states are expected to gradually ease lockdown restrictions while other states, such as New York, have issued no indication that measures will be relaxed any time soon.

The state’s Governor Andrew Cuomo did share some ‘good news’ for New Yorkers on Saturday though, revealing in his daily press briefing that daily deaths, hospitalizations, intubations and ICU admissions fell for a third consecutive day.  

As the nation’s crisis epicenter seems to have reached its peak, Cuomo announced that 504 people died from coronavirus Friday, the lowest death toll since April 1 and far lower than the state’s peak of 806 on April 7.   

The governor went on to make a series of thinly-veiled digs at Trump, in which he recited Lincoln’s famous quote – ‘a house divided itself cannot stand’ – and reminded him ‘that’s why we’re called the “United” States.’ 

His comments come after he blasted the president Friday, mocking his demand for gratitude for federal help and saying: ‘Thank you for doing your job’.   

'We continue to see a lot of positive signs that the virus has passed its peak,' the President said, just days after the White House issued guidelines for the gradual reopening of the country.

‘We continue to see a lot of positive signs that the virus has passed its peak,’ the President said, just days after the White House issued guidelines for the gradual reopening of the country.

NY Governor Andrew Cuomo did share some 'good news' for New Yorkers on Saturday, revealing in his daily press briefing that daily deaths, hospitalizations, intubations and ICU admissions fell for a third consecutive day.

NY Governor Andrew Cuomo did share some ‘good news’ for New Yorkers on Saturday, revealing in his daily press briefing that daily deaths, hospitalizations, intubations and ICU admissions fell for a third consecutive day. 

As the nation's crisis epicenter seems to have reached its peak, Cuomo announced that 504 people died from coronavirus Friday, the lowest death toll since April 1 and far lower than the state's peak of 806 on April 7

As the nation’s crisis epicenter seems to have reached its peak, Cuomo announced that 504 people died from coronavirus Friday, the lowest death toll since April 1 and far lower than the state’s peak of 806 on April 7

Chelsea, Massachusetts has emerged as a major hotspot for the coronavirus. Chelsea is the hardest hit city in the state. Chelsea is a Latin American immigrant heavy population with 80% of the population being essential workers, such as grocery clerks

Chelsea, Massachusetts has emerged as a major hotspot for the coronavirus. Chelsea is the hardest hit city in the state. Chelsea is a Latin American immigrant heavy population with 80% of the population being essential workers, such as grocery clerks

In Saturday’s update, Cuomo warned that although the falling death toll is promising, New York still has some dark days ahead as ‘540 families’ still lost their loved ones in a single day, including 36 across the state’s nursing homes. 

‘It’s not as high as it was but still 540 people died yesterday,’ he said.

‘It’s 540 people, 540 families.’ 

Total hospitalizations are also down from around 18,000 to almost 16,000 and emergency rooms are less crowded, Cuomo continued.

‘We increased hospital capacity by 53 percent’ and that capacity is now falling, he said.

Cuomo said the figures show that New York has gone past its peak and is now on a curve down to where it was late-March when cases and deaths started to rise. 

‘We’re down now for several days. The statisticians will say have we passed the apex? Have we hit the plateau and flattened for a period of time?’ he said.

He added: ‘If you look at the past three days you could argue that we are past the plateau and we’re starting to descend which is very good news.’ 

The number of people being intubated when they come into the state’s hospitals has also fallen which Cuomo said is ‘very good news’. 

‘The probability is about 80 percent won’t come off ventilators when they go on them so [the fall in numbers] is very good news,’ he said.

ICU admissions have also fallen, Cuomo said, before adding that he does ‘not know why we include this’. 

Thousands of Jacksonville residents poured onto the beaches on Friday as they reopened for the first time in weeks

Thousands of Jacksonville residents poured onto the beaches on Friday as they reopened for the first time in weeks

Jacksonville's beaches will be open daily from 6am to 11am and 5pm to 8pm for exercise such as walking and swimming only. Thousands of people dashed to the beach within 26 minutes of it opening

Jacksonville’s beaches will be open daily from 6am to 11am and 5pm to 8pm for exercise such as walking and swimming only. Thousands of people dashed to the beach within 26 minutes of it opening

After a week in what Trump described as an indicator that the worst of the crisis is behind us, the president says he will now shift his focus to kickstarting an economic recovery after four-weeks of lockdowns. 

But Democratic governors and health experts have warned the president about taking acting too prematurely, who warn that reopening the economy too quickly could lead to a ‘second wave’ of infections. 

There are now more than 2.3 million cases of coronavirus worldwide, and over 160,000  recorded deaths. 

With the US now burdened with the unfavorable accolade of being the country with the highest coronavirus infection and death rate of any country on earth, President Trump blasted China on Sunday, calling the country’s official coronavirus death statistics ‘impossible’.

The sentiment was echoed by Dr Deborah Birx, who concurred that Beijing failed its ‘moral obligation’ for transparency in the pandemic.

At a White House briefing on Saturday, Dr Birx was presenting a chart with coronavirus mortality rates by country when Trump interjected, saying ‘does anybody really believe this number?’

Dr Birx was presenting a chart with coronavirus mortality rates by country when Trump interjected, saying 'does anybody really believe this number?' The US bar is seen in blue

Dr Birx was presenting a chart with coronavirus mortality rates by country when Trump interjected, saying ‘does anybody really believe this number?’ The US bar is seen in blue

China's mortality rate was marked with an asterisk to indicate the unreliability of the data

China’s mortality rate was marked with an asterisk to indicate the unreliability of the data

Trump pointed at China at the bottom of the bar chart, showing a mortality rate of 0.33 per 100,000 population, but marked with an asterisk to indicate the unreliability of the data. 

China’s rate is orders of magnitude below other countries, including the U.S. with 11.24 deaths per 100,000 people. Belgium topped the chart at a horrifying 45.2.

Birx, the administration’s coronavirus response coordinator, immediately chimed in to back up Trump’s skepticism, saying: ‘I put China on there so basically you can see how unrealistic this would be.’ 

‘When highly developed healthcare delivery systems of the United Kindom and Belgium and France and Spain, with doctors and nurses and equipment, have case fatality rates in the 20s and up to 45 — and Belgium has an extraordinarily competent healthcare delivery system, and then china at 0.33 you realize that these numbers…’ Birx said, trailing off. 

‘And this includes the doubled numbers out of Wuhan,’ she added.

Birx immediately chimed in to back up Trump's skepticism, saying: 'I put China on there so basically you can see how unrealistic this would be.'

Birx immediately chimed in to back up Trump’s skepticism, saying: ‘I put China on there so basically you can see how unrealistic this would be.’

On Friday, the central Chinese city of Wuhan, where the pandemic began, raised its number of COVID-19 fatalities by 1,290.

State media claimed the undercount had been due to the insufficient admission capabilities at overwhelmed medical facilities at the peak of the outbreak.

Wuhan´s revised official death toll of 3,869 is the most in China. Numbers of total cases in the city of 11 million were also raised by 325 to 50,333, accounting for about two-thirds of China´s total 82,367 announced cases.

Questions have long swirled around the accuracy of China´s case reporting, with Wuhan in particular going several days in January without reporting new cases or deaths. 

  

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk