US breaks world record for cases in 24 hours just days before election

There has been a record surge in Covid-19 cases in the United States just days before the presidential election.

Health authorities on Friday confirmed 100,233 more people had tested positive for coronavirus over the past 24 hours.

The tally set a new single-day record in US cases for the fifth time in the past 10 days, surpassing the previous peak of 91,248 new infections posted a day earlier.

It also represented the world’s highest national daily toll during the pandemic, exceeding India’s 24-hour record of 97,894 set in September.

The US also documented a total of nine million cases on Friday, representing nearly 3% of the population, with almost 229,000 dead since the outbreak of the pandemic early this year, according to a Reuters tally of publicly reported data.

Covid-19 claimed at least 926 more deaths on the same day.

The accelerating pace of US infections continued as data trickled in, with at least a dozen states individually reporting a record number of new daily cases.

Serious cases of Covid-19 were on the rise as well, as hospitals in six states reported having the most patients suffering from the disease since the pandemic started. 

The number of hospitalised coronavirus patients has risen over 50% in October to 46,000, the highest since mid-August.

Among the hard-hit states are those most hotly contested in the campaign between Republican President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden, such as Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

Trump has repeatedly played down the virus, saying for weeks that the country is ’rounding the turn,’ even as new cases and hospitalisations soared.

He maintained his upbeat tone in a tweet on Friday, saying the country was doing much better than Europe had in confronting the pandemic.

Biden and fellow Democrats in Congress have criticised the president for his handling of the health crisis.

Americans go to the polls to decide the next president on Tuesday,

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