US overtakes China with most coronavirus cases

A nursing home worker and a medic are seen at the Life Care Center of Kirkland in Washington in this March 7, 202 file picture. — Courtesy photo

WASHINGTON — The United States now has more coronavirus cases than any other country in the world, overtaking.

According to the latest figures collated by Johns Hopkins University and released on Thursday, the US has more than 85,500 positive tests, overtaking China (81,782 cases) and Italy (80,589).

However, Italy tops the list with 8,215 coronavirus-related deaths. China has reported 3,291 fatalities and US deaths have neared 1,300.

As US took the grim title in terms of number of total coronavirus infections, President Donald Trump predicted the nation would get back to work "pretty quickly".

Vice President Mike Pence said coronavirus tests were now available in all 50 states and more than 552,000 tests had been conducted nationwide.

More than 500,000 people around the world have now contracted the virus and more than 20,000 have diedof it.

Meanwhile, the US Congress is expected to vote Friday on a $2 trillion emergency relief bill aimed at softening the blow from an economic crisis caused by the pandemic.

The spike of cases has hospitals around the country scrambling to keep up with the demand for care.

In New York, where more than half of the US cases have been reported, exhausted hospital workers are turning to increasingly desperate measures to combat the virus.

Outbreaks in New York, Washington and California have captured the nation's attention for weeks — but some health officials predict areas of Michigan and Illinois could be the next epicenters of the crisis. — Agencies