September 20: COVID-19 Cases Jump in India, Europe and U.S.

India street scene
A woman crosses the street in India.

The big coronavirus news is that the world surpassed 30 million cases a couple days ago and numbers continue to grow in Europe where France reported 13,498 cases yesterday.  But the worst-hit country right now is India, which has been peaking at more than 90,000 cases per day or about a million new cases in 11 days.  That’s about twice as many cases as the U.S. is reporting daily.  On Thursday, India reported more than 98,000 cases, the most ever reported by a single country, and no accounts for almost a third of all cases worldwide.

 While the U.S. is still ahead in total cases, with about 6.8 million, India is around 5.4 million and closing fast.  Depending on how the trends develop, India could overtake the U.S. sometime in October.  This is not totally unexpected as India has more than four times the U.S. population. 

U.S. Cases Rise

In the past 24 hours, the U.S. as reported 672 deaths and 41,844 new cases.  In this past week, cases have slowly started to tick upwards with the 7-day moving average above 40,000 again after reaching a low of 34,588 on Sept 12.  Deaths have also leveled out.

The New York Times reports that cases are increasing in 21 states and protectorates and decreasing in 33.  Deaths are reportedly increasing in 16 states, but we need to remember that deaths are a lagging indicator.

It is certainly possible that the U.S. will follow in the footsteps of Europe and cases start to climb back to prior levels. It is too soon to say for sure, but we may look back on late August and early September as a trough, a low point between peaks as COVID-19 cases slowly rise, thanks to colder fall weather, more people being indoors, and schools and colleges starting up.  

While the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg has knocked COVID-19 out of the news for now, we still except it to have some impact on the election during the next few weeks