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COVID-19 is now the leading cause of death in the United States

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COVID-19 is now the leading cause of death in the United States, killing more people per day than the previous top contenders, heart disease and cancer.

The new coronavirus was responsible for the deaths of 1,940 people on April 8 in the U.S., according to a graph published by Dr. Maria Danilychev, who specializes in geriatric medicine, internal medicine, and hospice and palliative medicine at Scripps Health in San Diego. 

In comparison, heart disease and cancer took the lives of 1,774 and 1,641 people on a daily basis, respectively, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data from 2018, the most recent year available, Danilychev wrote on the chart. Danilychev gathered the COVID-19 numbers from Worldometers.info. 

Related: Latest COVID-19 news and US case counts

COVID-19's grim new position is happening as several states, including New York, New Jersey and Michigan, are hitting what may be their peaks. Last week, COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death in the country, with 1,051 deaths on April 3, Danilychev noted.

Danilychev's animation, which shows the top 15 causes of death in the United States, can be seen here. Of note, the COVID-19 data shows actual U.S. deaths, while the other causes of death are extrapolated daily averages from 2018. 

This analysis makes sense, said Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious-diseases specialist at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, who wasn't involved with the project. 

COVID-19 may have also altered death rates in more indirect ways, Schaffner said.

"One of the things that's dropped off the list is trauma deaths, because people are not out banging into each other with their automobiles and things such as that," he said. It wouldn't be surprising if COVID-19 was a top killer in other developed countries, too, as these nations hit their peaks, including in Italy and Spain, "both countries that were very hard hit and are now leveling off," Schaffner told Live Science.

The only other modern outbreak in developed countries that affected death rates so dramatically is HIV, which causes AIDS, Schaffner said. "It became, for a period of time, one of the leading causes of deaths for young adults before it was controlled with treatment," he said. 

However, it appears that measures taken to control COVID-19, such as sheltering at home and social distancing, are working. 

"We're actually, in many parts of the country now, starting to turn this virus down," Schaffner said. "It's happening in the state of Washington and California. Even New York City thinks they may see a downturn."

As of today (April 10), the U.S. has diagnosed 495,750 COVID-19 cases and experienced 18,430 deaths, according to worldometers.info. But there is a bright spot; 26,783 people have recovered thus far, and experts expect that number to grow. 

Originally published on Live Science.

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  • stentor
    The CDC disagrees, according to a CNN article from the same day as this article.
    Reply
  • The Admiral
    Yep... complete horse s***.

    But then... that's the narrative... and the only solution is to curl up in a ball, capitulate to authority, and hide in your home... because the only treatment option available is being demonized because 1 out of 2000 people who use it might have a reaction... and also

    ...VACCINES TO SAVE THE DAY!!!

    Hey... we don't have one... and no one has yet managed to make one that works for the coronavirus family of pathogens... but VACCINES!!!!

    There's billionaires in a number of places rubbing their greedy hands together thinking about all the money and control they are garnering here.
    Reply
  • John M
    Of course, CV19 will surpass cancer. We are being told eventually everyone will test positive and dead people that test positive are being counted as a CV19 victim. No good crisis shall go unexploited!
    Reply
  • Sean
    Can we use BCG vaccine , as India and other countries are trying to implement to reduce corona
    Reply
  • dubej
    Okay. No, it didn't and will not overtake heart disease or cancer. Heart disease and cancer data is taken over the course of a year. We have lost 320,000 people to these diseases this year alone!! 840,000 died from heart disease alone in 2016. What was the peak daily death count of heart disease last year? This article doesn't say. Cancer? Doesn't say. This is literally the WORST kind of reporting out there. "COVID 19 is now the leading cause of death in the U.S., not by a longshot. Laura Geggel, you need to be terminated from any position related to reporting immediately, heck resign, recuse yourself indefinitely, you ARE part of the problem and should walk around with your head down in shame for falsely reporting such things.
    Reply
  • James DeMeo
    FALSE AND MISLEADING. CDC just announced a few days ago that anyone even "suspected" of being a Covid19 patient gets that put on their death certificate. No testing is required. So a person with flu, pneumonia, heart attack, cancer death, you name it, is open to be listed as a Covid19 death. And hence, the numbers of Covid19 deaths are artifically boosted up, even the AMA is recommending this procedure, and hosptials are happly also because medicare payments are increased by around $13,000 merely for an identification of Covid19. Three times as much is given if the person is put on a deadly ventillator, which is no small measure, very traumatic and probably kills a lot of people upon whom it is demanded. These procedures and data-rule changes were instituted without scientific justifications, apparently to jazz up the Covid19 numbers in agreement with the Big Push for mandatory vaccinations being rushed into production. Disreputable characters like Bill Gates and Dr. Anthony Fauci want to lord over the American public like Grand Inquisitors, with mandatory vaccines and rf-id chips that inform who got the vaccine and who not -- and from there, the public will be segregated, with vaccine-dissenters treated like leppers, refused entry to public events and spaces, like the Chinese communists. Fauci says, even returning back to "normal" will not happen, that forever more we must distance ourselves, wear face masks, not shake hands, etc. The guy is a neurotic germophobe and medical totalitarian. So many problems and deceptions going on, the CDC and medical establishment cannot be trusted anymore, and now also it appears, neither can Space.com. Sad.
    Reply
  • RobertPolaris
    Um sorry this is not correct at all. According to the CDC this is the top causes of death
    Number of deaths for leading causes of death:
    Heart disease: 647,457. Cancer: 599,108. Accidents (unintentional injuries): 169,936. Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 160,201.
    FastStats - Deaths and Mortality - Centers for Disease Controlwww.cdc.gov › nchs › fastats › deathsThere has only been 21,409 in the States and 113,902 world wide as of April 12, 2020, 16:01 GMT . https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/?#countriesYou are an idiot not doing research.
    Reply
  • xextremex
    RobertPolaris said:
    Um sorry this is not correct at all. According to the CDC this is the top causes of death
    Number of deaths for leading causes of death:
    Heart disease: 647,457. Cancer: 599,108. Accidents (unintentional injuries): 169,936. Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 160,201.

    Number of deaths for leading causes of deathSource: Deaths: Final Data for 2017, table B pdf icon"Deaths: Final Data for 2017"

    Talk about not doing research. You're using numbers from 2017. Thank you for the laugh.
    Reply
  • xextremex
    James DeMeo said:
    FALSE AND MISLEADING.
    That's just not true. There are very specific guidelines. And it appears to be up to the medical professionals to determine the cause of death. Obviously, having symptoms similar to the virus would raise a flag.
    Also, many cannot get tested so the doctor has to guess. These are labelled “probable” or “presumed.” https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvss/vsrg/vsrg03-508.pdf The rest of your rant isn't even worth responding to.

    The coronavirus will not be the leading cause of death in the United States. But people need to stop replying with BS.
    Reply
  • RobertPolaris
    xextremex said:
    Number of deaths for leading causes of deathSource: Deaths: Final Data for 2017, table B pdf icon"Deaths: Final Data for 2017"

    Talk about not doing research. You're using numbers from 2017. Thank you for the laugh.
    https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/10/health/coronavirus-not-leading-cause-of-death-us-trnd/index.html
    https://www.click2houston.com/news/national/2020/04/12/no-the-coronavirus-is-not-the-leading-cause-of-death-in-the-us-cdc-says/
    https://www.mdlinx.com/internal-medicine/article/6280
    I used this source: CDC and Johns Hopkins 3/22/2020 3:30 p.m. So sorry your still wrong.
    Reply