Story at a glance
- More than 4,400 people died due to COVID-19 infections on Wednesday, Jan. 12.
- Government officials have begun to expand demographics eligible for first rounds of the vaccine.
Once again, the U.S. hit a bleak milestone, recording another record of single-day fatalities due to COVID-19 infections. Data from The New York Times reveal that 4,406 deaths due to COVID-19 were reported on Jan.12, the largest increase seen since the onset of the pandemic in the U.S.
This brings the total number of American fatalities resulting from the pandemic to about 382,624.
Johns Hopkins data reveals that Los Angeles continues to reign as the newest COVID-19 hotspot for new cases and fatalities, with Cook County in Chicago coming in second.
The Associated Press also notes that the total number of deaths produced by the COVID-19 pandemic is close to surpassing the number of Americans killed in World War II.
These disturbing trends come as Ohio researchers announced the possible discovery of a new COVID-19 variant formed in the U.S., one that shows structural similarities to other mutations found in the U.K. and South Africa that are reportedly more contagious.
In response to the continued threat of the virus, the U.S. government is working on accelerating vaccine distribution processes, with officials at Operation Warp Speed recommending the inclusion of persons aged 65 and older be given available doses of the vaccine.