The virus has reached every corner of America, destroying dense cities and counties alike, with waves flowing through one region and then another.
In New York City, more than 28,000 people have died from the virus – or about one in 295 people. In Los Angeles County, the toll is roughly one in every 500 people. In Lamb County, Texas, where 13,000 people live in an area of 1,000 square miles, the loss is one in 163 people.
The virus has ravaged nursing homes and other long-term care facilities and spread easily among vulnerable residents: it causes more than 163,000 deaths, about a third of the country’s total.
Virus deaths have also disproportionately affected Americans across racial boundaries. Overall, the death rate for black Americans with Covid-19 was nearly twice that of white Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The death rate for Hispanics was 2.3 times higher than for white Americans. And for Indians it was 2.4 times higher.
As of Monday, an average of 1,900 Covid deaths had been reported on most days – after more than 3,300 peak points in January. The slowdown was a relief, but scientists said variants made it difficult to project the future of the pandemic, and historians cautioned against turning away from the scale of the country’s losses.
“There will be a real urge to say, ‘See how well we’re doing,” said Nancy Bristow, chair of the history department at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash. And author of American Pandemic: The Lost Worlds of the 1918 Influenza Epidemic. ”But she now warned of tendencies to“ rewrite this story into another story of American triumph ”.