US facing most difficult time amid Covid-19 surge: CDC

The US is facing the toughest time amid the raging coronavirus pandemic, as a continued increase in hospitalizations was leading to an exhaustion of healthcare services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned.

“The reality is December and January and February are going to be rough times. I actually believe they’re going to be the most difficult time in the public health history of this nation,” Xinhua news agency quoted CDC Director Robert Redfield as saying during a livestream event on Wednesday.

Earlier outbreaks were concentrated on some areas of the country, and medical workers and equipment could be transported to the hotspots.

But now, all parts of the country are facing rising infections and hospitalizations, Redfield said.

The number of US Covid-19 patients who currently remain in hospitals reached 100,226 on Wednesday, exceeding the threshold of 100,000 for the first time since the onset of the pandemic, according to the Covid Tracking Project.

About 90 per cent of US hospitals are in the red zone, Redfield said, adding: “I do think unfortunately before we see February, we could be close to 450,000 Americans dead from this virus.”

The US is currently the worst-hit country by the coronavirus pandemic with the highest number of cases and fatalties, according to Johns Hopkins University.

In its latest update on Thursday, the University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) revealed that the country’s overall caseload and death toll stood at 13,916,543 and 273,316, respectively.