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Doctors and nurses working in hospitals across the country are sharing the realities of COVID-19. USA TODAY

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The United States reported more than 4.4 million new coronavirus cases in November, far more than double any other month of the pandemic, a USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data shows.

The numbers are startling. The total case count is nearly what the nation reported in August, September and October combined. An average rate of 99 cases were reported every minute through the month. In November alone, one of every 22 North Dakota residents tested positive. In South Dakota, it was one of 26; Wyoming, one of 29; Iowa, one of 31.

The U.S. also reported 36,918 deaths in November, a toll higher than all months but April and May. The fatalities totaled more people than the U.S. lost in the entirety of the Korean War. On average, 50 Americans died every hour.

In South Dakota, North Dakota and Illinois, more than 1 of every 1,000 residents has now died of COVID-19.

Mike Stucka

Here's what to know Tuesday:

  • Florida public schools according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: 63.4 million cases and 1.47 million deaths.

    📰 What we're reading: These four states have been hit hard by COVID-19 yet balked at restrictions and mask mandates. The Daily Briefing newsletter.

    Maryland hospitals could reach record-high COVID-19 cases within days

    Maryland hospitals could see record-high numbers of COVID-19 patients in the coming days, Gov. Larry Hogan said Tuesday.

    The state this week also lost its youngest victim yet to the virus. Hogan choked up during a news conference in Annapolis as he announced the death of a 1-year-old boy, the first Marylander younger than 9 years old to die of COVID-19.

    Hogan also emphasized the need for more health care workers as the state faces its worst surge of the pandemic.

    COVID-19 hospitalizations have jumped by more than 50% in the last two weeks.

    As of Tuesday, the state reported 1,583 hospital beds in use by COVID-19 patients – not far below the highest-ever total of 1,711 beds, reached at the end of April.

    -- Madeleine O'Neill, USA TODAY NETWORK

    Michigan couple who did 'almost everything together' dies of COVID-19 at the same time

    Leslie and Patricia McWaters – Jackson, Michigan, natives who were married almost 50 years – did "almost everything together," relatives said. They danced together. They watched their kids, grandkids and great-grandkids grow up together. And in the end, they contracted the coronavirus and died together.

    Leslie, better known to friends and family as LD, and Pat, who relatives said was "definitely the boss," died at the same time, 4:23 p.m. last Tuesday, at Henry Ford Allegiance Health in Jackson. They were 75 and 78, respectively.

    "It should be no surprise that they went to be with the Lord together within the very same minute," their funeral 真人百家家乐官网网站home obituary said. "The hospital staff that cared for them, as they lost their battle to COVID, said it was too close to call. They recorded their deaths at the exact same time."

    But, the obituary added: "Those of us that know them, know that mom went first and said, 'LD, it’s time to go!' "

    Their story is both romantic and tragic as more than 9,000 Michiganders have died from the pandemic since March, and more than 350,000 people have had the virus.

    – Frank Witsil, Detroit Free Press

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    R-0 may be the most important scientific term you’ve never heard of when it comes to stopping the coronavirus pandemic. USA TODAY

    new government study suggests.

    Study s came to the conclusion after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found evidence of coronavirus antibodies in blood collected in December 2019, according to the report published Monday in the Clinical Infections Journal.

    Researchers analyzed blood donations collected by the American Red Cross from residents in nine states between Dec. 13 and Jan. 17 and found evidence of antibodies in 106 out of 7,389 samples.

    Antibodies also were found in 67 blood donations in January from states that didn’t report a widespread outbreak at the time, such as Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Rhode Island and Wisconsin.

    – Adrianna Rodriguez, USA TODAY

    Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted that "my team has worked to reopen testing at Union Station on Tuesday."

    According to a Miramax spokesperson, the shutdown was not a request from Miramax and once it learned of the disruption, production asked that the testing company resume its services at that location.

    In Atlanta, where classrooms are shut down in favor of virtual learning, a production team and cast of "Spider-Man" received special permission from Atlanta Public Schools to film at two high schools starting as soon as next month, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. The approval came after the movie’s location manager "dangled a $50,000 incentive," the Constitution wrote. 

    Christie Johnston, a teacher and mother, tweeted: "In person school is not only safe, it’s necessary for learning. Too bad kids don’t generate the millions a movie does, or they’d be back in front of their teacher in a classroom rather than a computer screen."

    Chicago officials shut down 300-person party amid COVID spike

    Chicago officials shut down a 300-person basement party early Sunday where attendees were not wearing masks or social distancing. A city task force issued multiple violations and closed the location. 

    "Actions like this are a slap in the face to the thousands of businesses and millions of Chicagoans that are making sacrifices every day to keep our city safe, and we will continue cracking down on this inexcusable activity,” Rosa Escareno, commissioner of the Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection, said in a statement.

    Chicago is in the midst of a COVID-19 surge far greater than its spring spike, and indoor dining has been closed since the end of October. In the following month, the city investigated nearly 900 businesses for violations and closed a sports complex for hosting a party with over 600 people and a ballroom for hosting a party with over 200 people. Last weekend alone, officials investigated nearly 100 incidents.

    The city has confirmed nearly 160,000 cases of COVID-19 and nearly 3,500 deaths since March. Upside: New daily case counts that peaked in mid-November have been steadily falling. The positivity rate Tuesday was down from the week before.

    Grace Hauck

    EuroWeekly News reports. Mayor Ana Maria Garcia, among those who tested positive in the town of about 1,600, said residents will be called by phone or SMS and if they fail to show up they could be charged with a crime against public health. Local ities have set up a volunteer service to distribute food to residents.

    holiday shopping in crowded stores is a “higher risk” activity and that people should limit any in-person shopping. Instead, the agency recommends shopping online, visiting outdoor markets or using curbside pickup, where workers bring orders to your car. Try to spend as little time inside stores as possible, says Dr. Isaac Weisfuse, a public health expert at Cornell University.

    “You just want to go in and out,” he says. “Get your shopping done and move on.”

    It's Giving Tuesday and donations are up 20% already this year

    Giving Tuesday, an annual day recognized for charitable giving, kickstarts December this year – a month big for donating. 

    Woodrow Rosenbaum, chief data officer for Giving Tuesday, said giving is up 20% year over year in all categories to both nonprofits and small businesses – despite the decline in the first quarter.  "The pandemic is motivating a lot of generosity," he said. "People are finding generosity as an antidote to fear, uncertainty, division." 

    If you are unable to give financially or otherwise this year, Rosenbaum suggested virtual volunteering, letter-writing campaigns and even sidewalk chalk messages as safe options amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

    Generosity, an 'antidote' to fear, division': How to help those in need on Giving Tuesday

  • Tips for coping: Every Saturday and Tuesday we'll be in your inbox, offering you a virtual hug and a little bit of solace in these difficult times. Sign up for Staying Apart, Together.
  • On Facebook: A lot is still unknown about the coronavirus. But what we do know, we're sharing with you. Join our Facebook group, Coronavirus Watch, to receive daily updates in your feed and chat with others in the community about COVID-19.

Contributing: The Associated Press

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