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A day in America: More than 117,000 viral infections



RACINE, Wis. They develop fever and despair, being locked up in their cars in a slow stream of records as they wait for coronavirus tests.

Some rolled down the windows to catch the 72-degree breeze from Lake Michigan inside and leaned their backs on their headrests, eyes closed. A family of five, with three children in the back seat of a pickup truck, had been driving for hours, trying to find a test site that had not run out of seats yet.

The coronavirus is out of control across the country, and more than 117,000 cases have been reported Thursday, more new than any other day of the pandemic. In 43 states, the number of new infections is steadily increasing. For many Americans, the pandemic̵

7;s rally feels inexorable.

“We know it’s only a matter of time,” said Matt Christensen, sitting in the passenger seat of the pickup truck with his wife.

In just one day across the United States, the coronavirus traveled around homes, workplaces, hospitals, schools, and laboratories. From dawn to Thursday night, the worst day of the pandemic in terms of new cases, snapshots provide a glimpse of the persistent and devastating spread of the virus: In Cleveland, Lab staff started the day dealing with other coronavirus tests. In Minot, ND, a hospital scrambles to find space for coronavirus patients to come through the door. In Unionville, Conn., Grieving Loved ones have completed a plan for a funeral for a 98-year-old matriarchal woman of a family who died of the virus.

And in Missouri, officials interrupted a day with a jarring announcement: One person who tested positive for coronavirus last week defied an order to isolate and serve as an election judge in the St. suburbs. Louis on Tuesday. Person that St. County officials Charles is not identified, is dead.

On Thursday morning, the governors started a habit now becoming a habit, begging Americans to do their part to stop the spread of coronavirus.

In Iowa, where cases have risen 118% in the past two weeks, Governor Kim Reynolds urges residents to act on what she describes as a pivotal stage in the state war.

“For at least the next three weeks, I am asking Iowans to do my best to help us stop the spread of Covid-19,” Ms. Reynolds repeated a warning from hospital leaders, Ms Reynolds said. capacity may be extended if cases continue to increase. .

Dr David Williams, clinical director of UnityPoint Health, said more frankly.

“My job, Iowans, is my job to tell you that it’s time for us to start listening,” said Dr. Williams.

That message was repeated hours later by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, after announcing that a record 4,961 people in his state received a diagnosis of coronavirus over a 24-hour period and 541 were ill. Severe needs special care, most of the pandemic.

“This virus doesn’t care if we vote for Donald Trump, it doesn’t care if we vote for Joe Biden,” said Mr DeWine. “It comes after all of us.”

In our own state, some of the most intangible work in diagnosing and combating viruses continued in a quiet laboratory around lunchtime.

At the Cleveland Clinic, a giant refrigerator glows with a batch of coronavirus samples. Technicians wearing surgical masks and blue plastic gloves shake the test tube and glance at the graph on the computer screen, trying to determine if another patient has tested positive for the virus. are not.

This is the reality across America, where laboratories – once overlooked in the back rooms of hospitals – have become the premise and center of the country’s pandemic response as they race to follow. timely testing needs.

Nearly every hour, samples from a nearby coronavirus testing site are passed through the refrigerator and delivered at the Cleveland Clinic. A sample processing machine rotates around the clock. It never seemed tiring, unlike the lab workers, who logged stressful hours for months.

“I work, I go home, I come back,” said one lab supervisor. Another worker described the feeling of increasing pressure and responsibility. “This is not fun and games,” she said. “Everyone’s lives are at stake.”

Children are also feeling the effects of increasing load, with increased infections forcing schools to close or delay reopening if they aren’t already open.

In southwest Virginia on Thursday, hundreds of students in the Henry County school district went to work in their classrooms. They came back in mid-October after weeks of online. But 22 staff and students had tested positive for the virus since live classes resumed, and hundreds more have been quarantined.

So on Thursday, as holidays approached and the prospect of more cases involving family gatherings, superintendent Sandy Strayer went to the school board to recommend the district. back to virtual learning until January.

The Board of Directors unanimously approved her recommendation. By Monday, the district’s schools will be closed again.

In Minot, ND, patients on Thursday crowded in the emergency room at Trinity Health, waiting to be hospitalized. The entire floor is dedicated to coronavirus patients, can accommodate 35 people, no empty beds. Half of all patients in the intensive care unit get sick with a virus.

Dr. Jeffrey Sather, chief of staff, phoned other major hospitals around the state to see if he could send some patients there – a request as usual in normal times. But every hospital is packed. He will have to handle the flow alone.

He said he is thinking about how to dedicate another floor of the hospital’s six floors to coronavirus patients.

Lisa Clute, director of public health at the First District Health Unit, said the coronavirus test-positive rate in Ward Ward, home to Minot, a city with a population of about 47,000, has reached 25%. The virus has spread through the community and recently reached two long-term care facilities where dozens of staff and residents are currently infected.

On Thursday, many of Dr. Sather’s employees worked overtime to meet huge demand. He says he worries about an employee overwork, as well as about all the things they are seeing on a daily basis.

“They regularly witness people suffocating,” said Dr. Sather. “And that’s a huge psychological loss.”

Amanda Harper had always imagined her grandmother’s funeral as a lifetime celebration that brought her from Canada to Connecticut. Seeing and serving Juliette Marie Foley, 98, will be at a church followed by family time, where loved ones will pore over old photos and exchange stories.

But that was before the pandemic broke the life and death rituals and traditions.

In October, Ms. Foley, the remainder of 17 children, became infected with coronavirus. An avid baker and tailor, she passed away on the last day of the month.

On Thursday afternoon, the day before Miss Foley’s little grave in Connecticut, there were still more details for Miss Harper and the rest of the family to consider.

Is Zoom Link suitable for friends and relatives who cannot attend, including beloved grandson Foley in Australia? For the few in person, how can Ms. Harper ensure it is both informal and safe, especially given the rise in viral cases in Connecticut? Should she bring along a large photo of her grandmother or encourage everyone to gather too close?

“This pandemic has robbed the way we say goodbye to us,” said Ms. Harper, 37, director of university marketing in Boston. “My grandmother had this beautiful and fulfilling life and it really ended in this catastrophic pandemic.”

When night fell, the country once again passed the 100,000-case mark.

Julie Bosman reported from Racine, Sarah Mervosh from Cleveland, and Audra DS Burch from Hollywood, Fla. Mitch Smith reporting contributions from Chicago, Lucy Tompkins from Bismarck, ND and Kate Taylor from Boston. Steven Moity Contribution research.


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