The United States on Thursday surpassed China and Italy as the country with the most coronavirus cases, according to a Reuters tally, as New York, New Orleans and other hot spots faced a surge in hospitalizations and looming shortages in supplies, staff and sick beds.
Medical facilities were running low on ventilators and protective masks and were hampered by limited diagnostic testing capacity.
The number of U.S. cases of coronavirus reached 81,378, the Reuters tally showed. China was second with 81,285 cases, and Italy third with 80,539 cases.
Tallies from The New York Times and Johns Hopkins University also showed that the U.S. surpassed China and Italy on Thursday.
1:05Coronavirus outbreak: NY governor says the greatest challenge is to provide ventilators for COVID-19 patients
Coronavirus outbreak: NY governor says the greatest challenge is to provide ventilators for COVID-19 patients
At least 1,178 people in the United States have died from COVID-19, which has proven especially dangerous to the elderly and people with underlying chronic health conditions, according to a running tally based on reports from state and local public health authorities.
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An expected shortfall of ventilators — machines that support respiration for people who have lost the ability to breathe on their own — was substantial, as a surge of cases overwhelms New York hospitals,