الصحة العامة / CBS News, USA

U.S. breaks record for COVID-19 cases in one day

The U.S. has broken a record for daily coronavirus cases after more than 102,000 new infections were recorded on Wednesday. Hospitalizations across the nation are also soaring.

Americans aren't just getting infected at record levels. At least 16 states have just broken hospitalization records. In Minneapolis, health officials said only nine ICU beds are available.

In Iowa, the seven-day positivity rate has soared to 39.5%. Suresh Gunasekaran, chief executive officer of the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, wrote an urgent message to the state's residents on the latest developments.

"We are again in danger of losing control of this pandemic in Iowa," the message read. "Our COVID positivity rates skyrocketed twice before, but this is the first time we have seen rates this high while also dealing with record patient hospitalizations."

In June, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, made a dire prediction. "I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day if this does not turn around, so I am very concerned," Fauci said.

Members of the Wisconsin National Guard operate a mobile COVID-19 test center on the grounds of Miller Park in Milwaukee on October 29, 2020. Scott Olson / Getty

In a private memo obtained by CBS News, the White House Coronavirus Task Force sent an ominous warning in hard-hit Wisconsin.

"Wisconsin is seeing an unrelenting rise in cases and test positivity over the last two months with an ongoing health emergency that will continue to lead to increasing hospitalizations and deaths," the memo begins. "A more comprehensive mitigation strategy is needed."

Sources close to the White House Coronavirus Task Force told CBS News there is very little work being done to address the recent spike in cases but the group is expected to meet on Friday.

There are also new developments on the coronavirus vaccine front. Drugmaker AstraZeneca, which has been working with the University of Oxford to develop a treatment, announced a vaccine could be available in two months. Other companies, including Moderna and Pfizer, are also conducting vaccine trials.

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