(Reuters) - The novel coronavirus has killed more than 100,000 people in the United States, according to a Reuters tally on Wednesday, even as the slowdown in deaths encouraged businesses to reopen and Americans to emerge from more than two months of lockdowns.
About 1,400 Americans have died on average each day in May, down from a peak of 2,000 in April, according to the tally of state and county data on COVID-19 deaths. In about three months, more Americans have died from COVID-19 than during the Korean War, Vietnam War and the US conflict in Iraq from 2003-2011 combined.
The new respiratory disease has also killed more people than the AIDS epidemic did from 1981 through 1989, and it is far deadlier than the seasonal flu has been in decades. The last time the flu killed as many people in the United States was in the 1957-1958 season, when 116,000 died.
Total US coronavirus cases are over 1.7 million with some southern states seeing new cases rising in the past week, according to a Reuters analysis of data from The COVID Tracking Project, a volunteer-run effort to track the outbreak.
Globally, coronavirus cases have topped 5.6 million with over 350,000 deaths since the outbreak began in China late last year and then arrived in Europe and the United States. South America is now bearing the brunt of the outbreak, with Brazil having the second-highest number of cases in the world.
Of the top 20 most severely affected countries, the United States ranks eighth based on deaths per capita, according to a Reuters tally. The United States has three fatalities per 10,000 people. Belgium is first with eight deaths per 10,000, followed by Spain, the United Kingdom and Italy, according to the Reuters analysis.