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The coronavirus has infected nearly 2 million Americans and claimed 112,311 lives, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University.
The 112,311 Americans killed by COVID-19 as of Wednesday is higher than the 104,404 troops killed in every war since the start of the Korean War. And soon coronavirus deaths in the U.S. will surpass the 116,516 American lives lost in World War I.
And COVID-19 has already killed more Americans than the 1968 pandemic, which claimed 100,000 lives. But it’s still far below the 675,000 killed by the 1918 Spanish flu.
The deaths resulting from this pandemic and soldiers killed in wars are two very different types of loss. But it does help to understand the sheer magnitude of the virus and its devastating effect on U.S. lives.
The virus is still well below the leading causes of death in the country. Every year, heart disease and cancer are the U.S.’s two leading causes of death. Those are likely to be the top two killers again this year. But COVID-19 deaths are still increasing at a fast clip and will probably be higher than causes like diabetes and Alzheimer’s.
States across the nation are easing their stay-at-home orders, including New York starting phase 1 this past Monday. But the easing of lockdowns comes as some states see their coronavirus cases and hospitalizations rise, including in Arizona, Texas, and North Carolina. This has increased fears that the U.S. could see another wave of outbreaks.