Expert warns US could see up to 400,000 COVID-19 deaths by spring 2021
(NEW YORK) -- The U.S. death toll from COVID-19 stands at 107,685 as of Thursday afternoon, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. But that number could be four times higher by this time next year, says Dr. Ashish Jha, director of the Harvard Global Health Institute.
"All of the best models suggest that another 100,000 will die over the next three to four months if we continue to have 1,000 deaths a day," Dr. Jha said during an online forum Wednesday, sponsored by the government’s Pandemic Response Accountability Committee.
"It is entirely possible that by next spring, by the time we might get a vaccine, 300,000 [to] 400,000 Americans will have died from this disease," Jha said, citing the national lifting of lockdowns, increasing civil unrest, and a lack of testing as primary drivers of increasing infections, which he also called “wholly preventable” with proper attention.
The United States continues to have more deaths from COVID-19 than any other nation. The U.K. is a distant second, with 39,987.
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