Former Trump adviser: US could have more coronavirus cases than other countries in a week

Tom Bossert, a former homeland security adviser to President TrumpDonald John TrumpFederal plan to contain Washington protests employs 7,600 personnel: report GOP Rep calls on primary opponent to condemn campaign surrogate's racist video Tennessee court rules all registered voters can obtain mail-in ballots due to COVID-19 MORE, warned Monday that the United States could soon have the highest number of coronavirus cases of any country in the world.

"Sadly, the numbers now suggest the U.S. is poised to take the lead in #coronavirus cases," Bossert wrote on Twitter.

"It’s reasonable to plan for the US to top the list of countries with the most cases in approximately 1 week," he added. "This does NOT make social intervention futile. It makes it imperative!"

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Bossert and other experts have been calling for actions meant to stop gatherings of people to slow the spread of the virus. Several of the hardest-hit states have now closed businesses like restaurants and bars and called on people to stay home in an effort to slow the spread of the virus.

The United States currently has more than 35,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus, according to a tracker from Johns Hopkins University, the third-highest of any country, behind China, with 81,496, and Italy, with 59,138.

Part of the reason for the climbing U.S. numbers is that testing is ramping up somewhat after an extremely slow start, so more existing cases are being identified. 

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Another factor is that recent actions to close businesses and slow the spread of the virus take time to show up as having an effect in the numbers, as it takes time for people to notice symptoms and get tested.

Still, Surgeon General Jerome Adams warned Monday morning that the numbers are getting worse.

"The numbers are going to get worse this week," Adams said on "CBS This Morning."

"Things are going to get worse before they get better. And we really need everyone to understand this is serious, to lean into what they can do to flatten the curve,” he said.

"Unfortunately, we're seeing New York is approaching Italy," Adams added. "Why? Because the numbers that you see of cases reflect what happened two weeks ago. Too many people are waiting too long to really take these 15 days to stop the spread initiative seriously."