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U.S. Coronavirus Death Toll Passes 100,000

A medic prepares to transfer a patient on a stretcher to an ambulance at the Life Care Center of Kirkland, the long-term care facility linked to the two of three confirmed coronavirus cases in the state, in Kirkland, Wash. March 1, 2020. (David Ryder/Reuters)

More than 100,000 people have died of the coronavirus in the U.S. as of Wednesday, with almost 1,700,000 infections confirmed throughout the country.

As of May 22, 43 percent of coronavirus victims were residents of nursing homes or assisted-living facilities, according to an analysis conducted for the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity. In the state of New Jersey alone, one-tenth of all long-term care residents in nursing homes have died during the pandemic.

The state of New York, which has seen over 5,000 coronavirus deaths in nursing homes, along with New Jersey and Michigan, have compelled nursing homes to readmit coronavirus patients discharged from the hospital. That policy stood in contrast to Florida, where state health officials worked to keep coronavirus patients out of nursing homes. At least 650 Florida nursing home residents have died of coronavirus.

In addition to nursing homes, prisons account for a large share of coronavirus outbreaks. Eight out of ten of the country’s biggest coronavirus hotspots are in jails, with the New York Times reporting over 47,000 infections and 485 deaths among inmates and staff in both federal and local prisons.

U.S. states are in the process of reopening certain regions following mass closures of businesses meant to mitigate the spread of coronavirus. President Trump has repeatedly urged states to lift restrictions on local economic activity. However, social-distancing recommendations remain in place across much of the country, effectively limiting the amount of customers businesses can admit on their premises.

“Social distancing will be with us through the summer to really ensure that we protect one another,” Dr. Deborah Birx said in an interview last month on NBC’s Meet the Press.

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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