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Biden Orders Federal Flags to Fly at Half-Employees as U.S. Covid Toll Nears One Million

President Biden, anticipating the grim milestone of 1 million American lives misplaced to Covid-19, stated in a proper assertion on Thursday that the USA should keep dedicated to preventing a virus that has “eternally modified” the nation.

“We should stay vigilant in opposition to this pandemic and do all the pieces we are able to to save lots of as many lives as doable, as we now have with extra testing, vaccines and coverings than ever earlier than,” he stated. “It’s essential that Congress maintain these assets within the coming months.”

The assertion got here hours earlier than Mr. Biden is to convene his second Covid-19 summit, geared toward injecting new urgency into the worldwide coronavirus response. Mr. Biden will even situation a proclamation on Thursday ordering flags on the White Home and all federal buildings to be flown at half-staff till subsequent Monday to mark the a million deaths.

As of Wednesday, the federal Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention had reported greater than 995,000 coronavirus deaths in the USA; a New York Instances database put the determine at greater than 997,000. However with heads of state, leaders of philanthropies and drug makers attending the digital gathering, Mr. Biden was able to mark the approaching second.

Properly into the pandemic’s third yr, Covid-19 has change into the third main reason for loss of life amongst Individuals, behind solely coronary heart illness and most cancers. Its toll has prolonged deep into the lives of households throughout the USA. An estimated 250,000 kids have misplaced mother and father or caregivers to Covid-19; of these, practically 200,000 have misplaced one or each mother and father.

The pandemic has additionally outlined the Biden presidency. Mr. Biden got here into workplace vowing to overcome Covid-19, however hopes of attaining “herd immunity” by the mix of vaccination and publicity gave option to the tough realization that vaccines’ protecting energy in opposition to an infection may wane and that new variants made reinfection extra frequent. Political divisions have thwarted masks and vaccine mandates.

Thursday’s assembly is an effort by the president to place Covid-19 again on the radar display, each in the USA and across the globe. The White Home has requested Congress for $22.5 billion in new emergency coronavirus help, however the request is stalled on Capitol Hill, as is a compromise proposal for $10 billion in help.

Senior Biden administration officers stated Mr. Biden would use the summit to make a brand new plea for Congress to authorize the cash.

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