By David Hall
The number of people hospitalized in the U.S. due to Covid-19 fell to the lowest level since mid-December, while newly reported cases continued to decline.
More than 110,000 people in the U.S. were hospitalized as of Sunday due to the disease, the lowest total since Dec. 15, according to the Covid Tracking Project. The number of patients requiring treatment in intensive care units, however, remained elevated at more than 21,000.
The U.S. reported more than 130,000 new cases for Sunday, the eighth consecutive day the daily total was below 200,000, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. The data may update later. Overall, the U.S. has reported more than 25.1 million coronavirus cases since the pandemic began.
The nation’s death toll rose by more than 1,700 on Sunday, pushing the total to more than 419,000, according to Johns Hopkins.
While the situation in the U.S. has improved somewhat compared with earlier in the year, there is growing concern over the spread of new variants of the virus.
Anthony Fauci, who is serving as President Biden’s chief medical adviser for the Covid-19 pandemic, on Sunday reiterated warnings that the new coronavirus variant first identified in Britain could be more deadly.
“We need to assume now that what has been circulating dominantly in the U.K. does have a certain degree of increase in what we call virulence, namely the power of the virus to cause more damage, including death,” he said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
On Monday, Mr. Biden plans to ban most non-U.S. citizens from traveling into the country if they have recently been in South Africa, where a new variant of the coronavirus is driving a second wave of infections. He will also restore a ban on most travel into the U.S. from Europe, the U.K. and Brazil, reversing an effort by former President Donald Trump to lift those restrictions in his closing days in office.