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US coronavirus death toll is projected to reach 410,000 in the next 4 months if mask use wanes

US coronavirus death toll is projected to reach 410,000 in the next 4 months if mask use wanes
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US coronavirus death toll is projected to reach 410,000 in the next 4 months if mask use wanes
More than 410,000 people in the U.S. could die from the coronavirus by January 1, more than doubling the current death toll, a new model often cited by top health officials predicted FridayThe widely cited model predicts worsening outbreaks in the Northern Hemisphere will lead to 1.9 million more coronavirus deaths in 2020 unless governments act.Mask mandates and social distancing could save hundreds of thousands of lives, but there is “a tremendous amount of COVID fatigue” among the world’s government leaders because of economic downturns, said Dr. Christopher Murray of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington. Near-universal mask use could cut the number of projected additional fatalities by more than half, according to the model.Most of the world’s population lives in the Northern Hemisphere. Respiratory illnesses tend to peak in winter months, a seasonal effect expected to hold true for COVID-19, Murray said Friday. Disease models are based on assumptions about human behavior, so there is a large amount of uncertainty.Even if a vaccine proves safe and effective, there won’t be time to distribute enough vaccine to change the bleak forecast, Murray said.The IHME model projects the wave will peak globally in mid-December at 30,000 deaths per day and in the United States in early December at about 2,900 deaths per day. India, the United States, Brazil, Mexico and Japan will lead the world in total deaths by Jan. 1, according to the forecast.CNN contributed to this report.

More than 410,000 people in the U.S. could die from the coronavirus by January 1, more than doubling the current death toll, a new model often cited by top health officials predicted Friday

The widely cited model predicts worsening outbreaks in the Northern Hemisphere will lead to 1.9 million more coronavirus deaths in 2020 unless governments act.

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Mask mandates and social distancing could save hundreds of thousands of lives, but there is “a tremendous amount of COVID fatigue” among the world’s government leaders because of economic downturns, said Dr. Christopher Murray of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington. Near-universal mask use could cut the number of projected additional fatalities by more than half, according to the model.

Most of the world’s population lives in the Northern Hemisphere. Respiratory illnesses tend to peak in winter months, a seasonal effect expected to hold true for COVID-19, Murray said Friday. Disease models are based on assumptions about human behavior, so there is a large amount of uncertainty.

Even if a vaccine proves safe and effective, there won’t be time to distribute enough vaccine to change the bleak forecast, Murray said.

The IHME model projects the wave will peak globally in mid-December at 30,000 deaths per day and in the United States in early December at about 2,900 deaths per day. India, the United States, Brazil, Mexico and Japan will lead the world in total deaths by Jan. 1, according to the forecast.

CNN contributed to this report.