• Thomas Parker

Coronavirus cases accelerate in U.S. following reopening

The number of coronavirus cases increased in all but a few states this past week, only decreasing in two states plus the District of Columbia--a significant contrast to when new virus cases were decreasing or steady in most states just over a month ago.

While new cases are an expected result of reopening, a rapid acceleration of new cases in some locations is giving governors pause about the reopening.

Nashville Mayor John Cooper said on Thursday that the city is reverting back to a modified "Phase 2" of their reopening, closing all bars in Davidson County.

Crowded indoor spaces filled with people yelling, leaning close to hear one another and touching the same sticky surfaces are “the opposite of social distancing,” said Dr. David Hamer of the Boston University School of Medicine.

“Can you do social distancing at a bar? Can you wear a mask while drinking?” Hamer said. “Bars are the perfect place to break all those rules.”

In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom took similar action, ordering bars and indoor restaurant dining to close again for the next three weeks in most of the state. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio delayed the city’s resumption of indoor dining.

Texas, Arizona, Los Angeles and some Pennsylvania counties are closing bars to slow the spread of the virus. Florida and Colorado have told bars they cannot serve alcohol on site.

Hospitalizations are rising nationally, but the death rate continues to decline, in part due to the fact that younger Americans are being infected at higher rates, and younger people are not as likely to suffer severe or deadly symptoms from the virus.

The United States has 2.7 million confirmed cases of the virus and suffered more than 128,000 deaths.

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