Coronavirus tally: Global cases of COVID-19 55.7 million, U.S. death toll edges closer to 250,000

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The global tally for confirmed cases of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 climbed to 55.7 million on Wednesday, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, while the death toll rose above 1.3 million. The U.S. has the highest case tally in the world at 11.4 million and highest death toll at 248,707, or more than a fifth of the global total. The U.S. counted 159,431 new cases on Tuesday, and at least 1,583 people died, according to a New York Times tracker. In the last week, the U.S. has averaged 158,254 cases a day, up 79% from the average two weeks ago and cases are rising in 50 states and territories. There are currently a record of 76,823 COVID-19 patients in U.S. hospitals, according to the COVID Tracking Project, topping the previous record of 73,014 set a day ago. Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said the company and its partner BioNTech SE have passed the minimum two-month follow-up that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires as a safety milestone to obtain emergency use authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate.
Brazil has the second highest death toll at 166,699 and is third by cases at 5.9 million. India is second in cases with 8.9 million, and third in deaths at 130,993. Mexico has the fourth highest death toll at 99,026 and 10th highest case tally at 1 million. The U.K has 52,839 deaths, the highest in Europe and fifth highest in the world, and 1.4 million cases, or seventh highest in the world.
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