The U.S. has confirmed more than 1.7 million cases of COVID-19 — more than 102,000 of them fatal. The rate of daily new cases nationwide has declined throughout May, though there is concern that it could begin to spike again. Businesses have started reopening as states have begun to relax stay-at-home orders and social distancing measures they put in place to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
To determine each state’s social distancing measures and restrictions on movement, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed executive orders from state governors since the first COVID-19 case was confirmed in the United States at the end of January.
States in the northeast that have been particularly hard-hit by the coronavirus — like New York and New Jersey — have had some of the lengthiest and most severe measures enacted to restrict the spread of COVID-19, and still remain largely closed down.
Other states began pulling back on their orders as early as late April, and seven never enacted them at all. The rate of infections has slowed over the last month in many of the states with more restrictive measures. Meanwhile, COVID-19 daily infections have increased rapidly in a number of less restrictive states, including in Iowa and South Dakota, which never enforced a stay at home order.
Though the spread of coronavirus appears to be slowing, every state has had at least one new case from May 18 to May 25, and some have confirmed well over 1,000 new cases in their state during that time. These are the states where the virus is growing the fastest right now.
It is important to note that, while confirmed infections appear to be trending downwards, there are likely many thousands of people who become infected and are asymptomatic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were likely thousands of undiagnosed deaths that occurred during the pandemic. This is how COVID-19 is being underreported in most states.
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