The United States prepared to roll out a coronavirus vaccine within days as the country’s daily death toll surpassed 3,000 for the first time, exceeding the number of lives lost from the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
COVID-19 deaths reached 3,253 on Wednesday, pushing up the U.S. total since the start of the pandemic to 289,740, with a record 106,219 people hospitalized with the highly infectious respiratory disease.
Healthcare professionals and support staff, exhausted by the demands of the pandemic, have been watching patients die alone as millions of Americans refuse to follow medical advice to wear masks and avoid crowds in order to curb the virus’ spread.
Potentially helping to rein in the outbreak, a vaccine could start reaching healthcare workers, first responders, and nursing home residents as soon as Sunday, though more likely early next week, according to Trump administration officials.
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