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For now, wary US treads water with transformed Covid

Washington: The fast-changing coronavirus has kicked off summer in the U.S. with lots of infections but relatively few deaths compared to its prior incarnations.

COVID-19 is still killing hundreds of Americans each day, but is not nearly as dangerous as it was last fall and winter.

It's going to be a good summer and we deserve this break, said Ali Mokdad, a professor of health metrics sciences at the University of Washington in Seattle. With more Americans shielded from severe illness through vaccination and infection, COVID-19 has transformed for now at least into an unpleasant, inconvenient nuisance for many. It feels cautiously good right now, said Dr. Dan Kaul, an infectious diseases specialist at the University of Michigan Medical Centre in Ann Arbor. For the first time that I can remember, pretty much since it started, we don't have any (COVID-19) patients in the ICU. As the nation marks July Fourth, the average number of daily deaths from COVID-19 in the United States is hovering around 360. Last year, during a similar summer lull, it was around 228 in early July.

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