The U.S. coronavirus death toll topped 150,000 on Wednesday — the highest of any nation by far — with California and Florida reporting single-day records for fatalities. With the virus continuing to spread out of control, researchers at Johns Hopkins University are calling for a “reset” in the U.S. coronavirus response with universal mask mandates, federal support for expanded testing and a new round of stay-at-home orders in hot spots. And in an open letter published Wednesday, the Association of American Medical Colleges writes, “If the nation does not change its course — and soon — deaths in the United States could be well into the multiple hundreds of thousands.”
In Texas, President Trump was photographed wearing no mask Wednesday as he toured an oil rig and attended a campaign fundraiser — a violation of Gov. Greg Abbott’s statewide mask mandate.
In Houston, Dr. Joseph Varon, chief medical officer at United Memorial Medical Center, said COVID-19 will continue to surge unless people adhere to basic public health measures like mask-wearing.
Dr. Joseph Varon: “I’m pretty much fighting two wars: a war against COVID and a war against stupidity. And the problem is that the first one I have some hope about winning, but the second one is becoming more and more difficult to treat.”