For 1st time, U.S. adds more than 3,000 COVID-19 deaths in single day

A floral arranger wears a mask as he waters hundreds of poinsettia plants on Wednesday at Walter Knoll Florists in St. Louis, Mo. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI
A floral arranger wears a mask as he waters hundreds of poinsettia plants on Wednesday at Walter Knoll Florists in St. Louis, Mo. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 10 (UPI) -- The United States for the first time has seen more than 3,000 coronavirus-related deaths in a single day.

Data from Johns Hopkins University shows there were about 3,120 deaths on Wednesday, topping the previous record of 2,879 last week. The data show there were 221,000 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, the second most to date.


Over the past week, there has been an average of almost 2,300 deaths per day.

Since the start of the pandemic, the United States has recorded 15.61 million coronavirus cases and about 292,140 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins.

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Hospitalizations also set a record Wednesday, 106,000 nationwide. About a fifth of all those patients are in intensive care.

The new figures Thursday came ahead of a key meeting of the Food and Drug Administration's regulatory vaccines committee, which is expected to grant emergency use authorization for the vaccine developed jointly by Pfizer and BioNTech.

The Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee will decide whether the Pfizer vaccine is safe and effective enough to warrant emergency approval. The FDA will rule immediately after it receives the recommendation. It's the final step necessary before millions of doses can be shipped nationwide.


Here are some of the other COVID-19 developments Thursday:

  • The New England Journal of Medicine published data from Pfizer's late-stage clinical trials. The paper said 22,000 volunteers took the vaccine and 22,000 a placebo. There were 162 COVID-19 infections among the placebo group, but just eight among those who received the vaccine.
  • Senators are holding a hearing on Capitol Hill to examine federal plans for transporting millions of doses of vaccines nationwide. A subcommittee of the Senate commerce committee questioned witnesses about "supply chain issues within the transportation network and ongoing coordination in preparation to distribute the vaccine." The witness list includes Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine, FedEx Executive Vice President Richard Smith and United Parcel Service President of Global Healthcare Wesley Wheeler.
  • BioNTech, Pfizer's vaccine development partner, said hackers "unlawfully accessed" regulatory documents the companies had submitted to the European Union for vaccine approval. BioNTech said the hacked documents were stored on a European server, but stressed that no BioNTech or Pfizer systems were breached and no personal data relating to the vaccine study were compromised.

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