US COVID deaths exceed WWII fatalities as Biden warns worst yet to come
The number of US COVID-19 deaths surpassed the country’s toll of military fatalities in World War II as new US president Joe Biden took office.
A total number of 406,147 people have died from the disease across the US as of Wednesday, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
The total number of US troops lost their lives in the world war reached 405,399.
Biden is expected to unveil his administration’s plans on Thursday as he warned the worst of the pandemic is still to come.
With less than five percent of the world population, the US has had the world's highest death toll from the COVID pandemic.
The virus has also infected over 96,906,712 across the world, while some 24,438,720 cases have been reported in the US.
The surge in coronavirus cases over the past months has prompted the new US president to make the fight against the pandemic his administration's top priority.
Among his administration's targets is to vaccinate 100 million people in the first 100 days in office.
The US President’s point-man for the mission, Jeff Zients, said the US would also rejoin the World Health Organization, reversing former President Donald Trump’s controversial COVID decisions.
He said that US director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci would lead a delegation to the WHO executive board meeting on Thursday.
Fauci said last month that the nation will get enough collective immunity through vaccinations to regain “some semblance of normality” by fall 2021.
The health expert, however, said the COVID-19 vaccine rollout is off to a much slower start than expected.
Executive vice president for health policy at KFF (Kaiser Family Foundation), however, said while a pace of one million doses a day is “somewhat of an increase over what we’re already doing,” a much higher rate of vaccinations will be necessary to stem the pandemic.
Experts also said that not enough funding for large-scale vaccination efforts, and confusing federal guidance on distribution of the vaccines, are problems that could plague the Biden administration the fight against the raging pandemic.