As the number of novel coronavirus COVID-19 cases rose to 159,686 in the United States, President Donald Trump extended the nationwide lockdown to April. This comes after US health bodies warned that the worst of the coronavirus pandemic was yet to come. Trump had earlier undermined the coronavirus threat as he called the pandemic a hoax and expressed hopes about the US economy resuming pace by the Easter holidays.
Speaking at the White House, the US President said that even if his administration manages to keep the death toll under 100,000 it will "have done a great job.” In the same address, Trump also undermined his plea for unity by making incendiary allegations that health care workers were stealing masks.
On March 30, he admitted that the economy reopening by Easter has only been an "aspiration" as his experts advised him against it. He announced that the initial 15 days social distancing time period has been extended till April 30 and said that he was expecting everything to come back to normal by 1 June.
Trump’s social distancing rules recommend people to refrain from gathering, shopping, going to restaurants and non-essential travel. In addition, the US administration also advises the old and people already suffering from a disease to stay at home.
This comes as the count of the infected patients in the United States has now increased fourfold. As per reports, the US now stands at the top of the global count with over 142,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 infected patients. The total death toll in the country has currently skyrocketed to a count of beyond 2,480.
As of March 23, the fatality rate was reportedly only 414, while many other states in the country had still not reported their fatality rate. While the cases of coronavirus-infected patients have increased over four times in the past week, the death rate has been increasing even more rapidly.
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