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NEW YORK (WABC) — The United States shattered its previous record single-day death toll yesterday with a devastating 4,327 deaths reported from coronavirus, according to new data overnight from Johns Hopkins University, marking the deadliest day on record since the start of the pandemic.

The nation also surpassed 380,000 deaths, with the death toll at 380,796 as of Wednesday morning. Confirmed infections have topped 22.8 million.

More than 9.3 million Americans have received their first shot of the vaccine, or less than 3% of the population, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That is well short of the hundreds of millions who experts say will need to be inoculated to vanquish the outbreak.

The effort is ramping up around the country. Large-scale, drive-thru vaccination sites have opened at stadiums and other places, enabling people to get their shots through their car windows.

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Here are more of today’s headlines:

NJ to begin vaccinating those 65 and older Thursday: Murphy
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said Wednesday that the state will begin offering COVID-19 vaccinations to those 65 and older on Thursday, as well as anyone between the ages of 16 and 64 who have medical conditions. Meanwhile, Murphy also announced that the state had crossed the threshold of 20,000 deaths related to COVID-19.

2 variant cases of 12 in NYC
Two of the 12 cases identified in New York State that had the more contagious COVID variant are in New York City. Mayor Bill de Blasio said he just received that information during his news conference on Wednesday. One of the infected persons had traveled from the UK. Mayor de Blasio renewed his call for a travel ban from the UK to NYC.

“Two cases, obviously they are being followed up and supported, Test and Trace, and we will follow up with updates,” he said.

Javits mega vaccine center opens in NYC
After a rollout that some officials admit was slow, the push is on to get more people vaccinated in New York – and vaccinated quickly. People have started snapping up appointments at the vaccination sites that have opened over the past couple of days. Wednesday, the Javits Center opens its 24-7 vaccine center and another opens in Westchester County. Appointments are required.

100-year-old woman beats COVID
A 100-year-old COVID patient defied the odds and was discharged from the hospital. Tina Pignataro won her fight against the virus and left the emergency field hospital at Staten Island University Hospital.

Yankee Stadium could become vaccination site
A spokesperson with the New York Yankees said the organization is currently working with city representatives to finalize details to use the stadium as a vaccination site.

Elected leaders dropped ball on vaccine rollout in Tri-State
The rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations has been rocky and confusing across the New York area and large swaths of the country, and now, one former federal health official says we’re at least a month behind where we should be.

“Unacceptable,” former FDA Associate Commissioner Peter Pitts said. “The baton was dropped, and we need to pick it up and get going.”

CDC expands negative COVID-19 test requirement to all air passengers entering the United States
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expanding the requirement for a negative COVID-19 test to all air passengers entering the United States. The new rules go into effect Jan. 26. Before departure to the United States, a required test, combined with the CDC recommendations to get tested again 3-5 days after arrival and stay home for 7 days post-travel, will help slow the spread of COVID-19 within US communities from travel-related infections. Pre-departure testing with results known and acted upon before travel begins will help identify infected travelers before they board airplanes.

Nearly 2.3M children have tested positive for COVID
The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association is reporting they have found about 171,000 new child COVID-19 cases over the week ending with Jan. 7 (2,128,587 to 2,299,666).

Third lawmaker in Capitol siege lockdown tests positive for COVID-19
A third Democratic member of the House who was forced to go into lockdown during last week’s violent siege at the U.S. Capitol has tested positive for COVID-19. Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Ill., said on Twitter that he tested positive Tuesday morning. He said he is not feeling symptoms but expressed dismay at the spate of positive test results and blamed Republican members of Congress who declined to wear a mask when it was offered to them during the lockdown.
“Today, I am now in strict isolation, worried that I have risked my wife’s health and angry at the selfishness and arrogance of the anti-maskers who put their own contempt and disregard for decency ahead of the health and safety of their colleagues and our staff,” Schneider said.

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