The increasing number of cases in COVID-19 in the United States warrants constant inspection. Data from Johns Hopkins University shows that the average weekly count of coronavirus cases in the country has reached nearly 300% higher this Labor Day compared to the same time last year.
At the same time, the average number of deaths is also higher, reaching more than 86% higher compared to the same period last year.
According to reports, there were 1.146 million weekly cases this past weekend compared to the number of 287,235 last year.
Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said on August 31 that the CDC recommends people who are unvaccinated refrain from traveling on Labor Day weekend given the surge in cases.
“We have actually articulated that people who are fully vaccinated and who are wearing masks can travel,” she said. “Although given where we are with disease transmission right now, we would say that people need to take their own – these risks into their own consideration as they think about traveling.”
Reports from TSA show that more than 3.5 million traveled in the US on Friday and Saturday.
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Health officials had repeatedly urged unvaccinated individuals to stay at home ahead of Labor Day, as the Delta variant continues to surge across the country.
On Monday, there were 73,331 new cases of COVID-19 in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins, and the average weekly cases have only been increasing since the end of June.
All of the United States remains at a “high” level of community transmission, according to the CDC.
Making matters worse is the new variant that may be able to bypass existing coronavirus antibodies. US health officials say that they are “keeping a very close eye”.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said on Thursday that the U.S. is taking the variant, dubbed Mu, “very seriously,” but that it hasn’t taken an extensive hold in this country.
“We’re keeping a very close eye on it. It is really seen here, but it is not at all even close to being dominant,” Fauci said. “As you know, the Delta is more than 99% dominant.”
The World Health Organization designated Mu a “variant of interest” this week, and said more studies need to be done to confirm whether the variant could evade existing antibodies.