USA

U.S. Has More Than 200,000 Confirmed Coronavirus Cases

As of Wednesday, more than 4,300 people had died and more than 8,400 people had recovered from the virus in the U.S.

The U.S. has more than 200,000 confirmed coronavirus cases — the most in the world. As of Wednesday, more than 4,300 people had died and more than 8,400 had recovered from the virus in the U.S.

New York and New Jersey have reported the most cases. 

New York, the hardest-hit state, welcomed the USNS Comfort hospital ship on Monday. The ship was brought in to help hospitals with the influx of coronavirus cases; it will treat non-coronavirus patients. New York City has also set up a 68-bed makeshift hospital in Central Park for coronavirus patients.

During a briefing Tuesday, the White House Coronavirus Task Force predicted up to 240,000 Americans could die from COVID-19, factoring in current intervention measures. But it said mortality rates could be lower than predicted.

"This is going to be a rough two-week period," President Trump said. "As a nation, we face a difficult few weeks as we approach that really important day when we're going to see things get better, all of a sudden. And it's going to be like a burst of light."

Some studies suggest people who aren't showing symptoms are driving the spread of the virus. The director of the CDC told NPR as many as 25% of coronavirus carriers could have no symptoms. He said the CDC is even considering having everyone wear protective masks to stop the spread of the virus, although it's not clear how effective that would be at keeping people healthy.

Earlier this week, the president extended social distancing guidelines through the end of April, which Anthony Fauci, a physician on the task force, said appears to be helping slow the spread of the disease. 

According to a new CDC study, people infected with the coronavirus can transmit it days before symptoms appear. 

More than two dozen states have issued stay-at-home orders to slow the virus' spread. 

Contains footage from CNN.

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