U.S. sets new COVID-19 record; Biden to announce virus response team

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Nov. 8 (UPI) — The United States reported another record high in daily COVID-19 cases on Sunday as president-elect Joe Biden said he plans to launch his own coronavirus taskforce upon taking office.

The nation added 126,742 cases on Saturday, topping 100,000 new infections for the fourth consecutive day, while the death toll rose by more than 1,000 for the fifth consecutive day as 1,040 new fatalities were reported, according to Johns Hopkins University’s COVID-19 tracker.

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Overall, the United States has reported 9,860,558 cases and 237,113 deaths since the start of the pandemic, according to Johns Hopkins.

During his victory speech on Saturday, Biden — after repeatedly condemning President Donald Trump‘s response to the virus on the campaign trail — said he planned to assemble a group of experts to lead his virus response.

“On Monday, I will name a group of leading scientists and experts as transition advisers to help take the Biden-Harris COVID plan and convert into an action blueprint that stars on Jan. 20, 2021,” said Biden.

Biden deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield told NBC News’ Meet the Press Sunday that the team will be led by former surgeon general Dr. Vivec Murthy and form Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. David Kessler, who have been advising his campaign since the onset of the pandemic.

California leads the nation with 956,957 cases and has the third-highest death toll at 17,939 deaths since the onset of the pandemic, while Texas is second in both cases and deaths with 956,234 infections and 18,743 fatalities as of Saturday.

Florida ranks third in the nation with 843,897 cases after adding 6,820 new cases Sunday in addition to reporting 22 new deaths for the nation’s fourth-highest death toll at 17,333.

New York ranks fourth in the nation in cases with 529,063, adding 3,428 cases and maintained the nation’s highest death toll at 25,946, adding 18 new deaths Sunday.

Illinois was fifth in cases with a total of 487,987 after adding 10,009 new cases and 42 new deaths for a total of 10,196.

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