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U.S. adds 143,000 COVID-19 cases; over 2 million in last two weeks

By Don Jacobson
U.S. adds 143,000 COVID-19 cases; over 2 million in last two weeks
Masked volunteers unpack turkeys at the Urban League of Greater St. Louis in St. Louis, Mo., on Saturday. The Urban League gave away nearly 3,000 turkeys in two hours to needy residents. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 23 (UPI) -- The United States has added almost 143,000 new COVID-19 cases and close to 1,000 more deaths, according to updated data Monday from Johns Hopkins University.

The data shows there were 142,700 new cases Sunday, bringing the national total to 12.25 million since the start of the pandemic. There have been more than 2 million new cases since Nov. 10. At the start of the crisis, it took six months to reach 2 million cases in the United States.

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Another 900 patients died on Sunday, according to the data. Almost 25,000 patients have died nationwide in November alone.

The average deaths per day (1,300) has risen by 50% over the last two weeks, according to the health website Stat, and there have now been a total of 256,800 coronavirus deaths in the United States.

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The Transportation Security Administration says the number of travelers who passed through U.S. airport checkpoints this weekend topped 1 million per day for the first time since the start of the pandemic.

About 1 million travelers passed through on both Friday and Sunday ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday -- one of the busiest travel periods of the year -- despite recommendations from federal health officials to stay home.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week strongly recommended against traveling for the holiday period, due to surging cases nationwide.

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In Nevada, Gov. Steve Sisolak announced increased restrictions on Sunday to slow the spread. The measures, which take effect Tuesday, include limiting restaurants, bars, gaming operations, gyms and other businesses to 25% of capacity -- down from 50%.

Retail stores, including grocery stores, will remain at 50% under "strict social distancing and additional monitoring requirements." Public gatherings will be limited to 50 people and private gatherings to 10 people.

The measures will last for at least three weeks.

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"We are on a rapid trajectory that threatens to overwhelm our health care system, our front-line health workers, and your access to care. So it's time to act." Sisolak said.

In Wisconsin, doctors say hospitals in the northwestern part of the state have responded to a rise in hospitalizations by moving beds into waiting rooms, surgical spaces inside and parking spaces outside.

Physicians at the Mayo Clinic Health System told Wisconsin Public Radio that facilities in Eau Claire and Barron have been forced into "diversion status," in which makeshift spaces are being converted.

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