U.S. reports 2.2M COVID-19 cases in 2021; lawmakers may have been exposed during riot

COVID-19 virus illustration. Image: Pixabay/Geralt

Jan. 10 (UPI) — The United States has reported more than 2 million COVID-19 cases in the first 10 days of 2021 and the Office of the Attending Physician to Congress warned that lawmakers may have been exposed to the virus during a siege on the Capitol Wednesday.

Since the start of the year, 2.2 million new coronavirus cases and 27,163 deaths have been reported in the United States, including 273,854 infections and 3,735 on Saturday, according to data gathered by Johns Hopkins University. The United States leads the world with 22,177,373 reported cases and 372,884 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

The increase in cases and deaths to begin the year comes after the nation reported a record 6,365,297 new cases in December.

In addition, Brian Monahan, the attending physician to Congress, sent an email to House lawmakers on Sunday warning that they may have been exposed to the virus while the Capitol building was locked down on Wednesday, The Washington Post reported.

“On Wednesday, Jan. 6, many members of the House community were in protective isolation in a room located in a large committee hearing space,” Monahan said. “The time in this room was several hours for some and briefer for others. During this time, individuals may have been exposed to another occupant with coronavirus infection.”

Monahan didn’t specify exactly how many lawmakers were present in the room at the time.

Members of Congress have qualified for priority access to the COVID-19 vaccine and many — but not all — of them have received the first of two doses.

On Sunday, California, which leads the nation in COVID-19 cases reported 49,685 new infections for a total of 2,670,962 and added 468 new fatalities to bring its death toll to 29,701.

As of Saturday, Texas ranked second in cases with 1,703,634 infections and reported 29,691 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

No. 3 Florida reported 12,313 new cases for a total of 1,477,010 since the start of the pandemic and 108 new resident deaths for a death toll of 22,912.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the state has reported 15,355 new positive tests and 151 deaths on Sunday. Since the start of the pandemic New York has the nation’s highest death toll at 31,672 and ranks fourth in positive cases with 1,126,442.

Illinois reported 4,711 new cases Sunday for the nation’s fifth-highest total at 1,028,759 while adding 81 new deaths for a total of 17,574.


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