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US surpasses 500,000 COVID-19 deaths

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The United States on Monday surpassed more than 500,000 deaths from COVID-19, data shows.

The stunning figure accounts for around 20 percent of the world’s coronavirus death toll, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, called half-a-million deaths due to the virus “terrible” and “historic.”

“We haven’t seen anything even close to this for well over a hundred years since the 1918 pandemic of influenza,” Fauci told the NBC anchor Chuck Todd on “Meet the Press” on Sunday.

“It’s something that is stunning when you look at the numbers, almost unbelievable, but it’s true. This is a devastating pandemic, and it’s historic. People will be talking about this decades and decades and decades from now.”

The figure comes more than a year after the first case of coronavirus was announced stateside on Jan. 21.

Since then, there have been more than 28 million infections recorded in the nation, data shows.

The US has the eighth-highest number of total coronavirus deaths per capita — or a rate of about 1,495 fatalities per 1 million people, according to Statista.

Meanwhile, more than 43.6 million people in the US have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine since the first shot was approved in December, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

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