The White House has issued a stark warning to Americans as officials projected the coronavirus pandemic could claim 100,000 to 240,000 lives, even if people adhere to the social distancing guidelines of six feet of separation. Officials also warned the worst case scenario predicted between 1.5million and 2.2million deaths. President Donald Trump said the latest prediction was “sobering” as he urged Americans to brace for a “very, very painful two weeks”.
The President’s coronavirus task force presented the findings at a two-hour press briefing on Tuesday afternoon.
Mr Trump said: “I want every American to be prepared for the hard days that lie ahead.
“We’re going to go through a very tough two weeks.”
Dr Anthony Fauci, the head of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases who serves on the task force, said people should be prepared for such high fatalities.
When discussing the new projections, Dr Fauci said: “The answer is yes – as sobering a number as that is, we should be prepared for it.
“Is it going to be that much? I hope not and I think the more we push on the mitigation the less likely to be that number but, being realistic, we need to prepare ourselves that is a possibility that that’s what we’ll see.”
The figures are calculated from models using data on how the virus has spread overseas and in hotspots such as New York.
The US has the most coronavirus cases in the world, with the latest figures exceeding 188,000.
The vast majority of cases, over 75,000 originate in the state of New York.
America’s death toll of 4,055 remains far behind Italy and Spain, who are on 12,428 and 8,464 respectively.
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8.08am update: England accounts for 91% of UK deaths
Yesterday marked the UK’s biggest rise in coronavirus related deaths, up 393 to 1,808.
According to date by Sky News, England accounts for 91 percent of all UK deaths, with a total of 1,651.
A third of England’s deaths are located in the capital, with 568.
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