What happens next is unclear. But here’s how we got here:
By June 9, the US had flattened the curve and was averaging about 20,340 new cases daily, Johns Hopkins data showed. States were opening back up after weekslong lockdowns that were put in place to help curb the spread of the virus.
By July 22, the nation reached its highest peak of the pandemic, to date, averaging more than 67,000 cases daily. The US was seeing huge spikes in cases in the West and South.
By September 12, the summer peak had slipped down to a little more than 34,300 average new cases daily, according to data from Johns Hopkins. That baseline was higher than what it was in the spring and experts warned Americans should work to lower it as the nation was heading into the colder fall and winter months.
Now, we’re seeing another rise in cases. The US just surpassed eight million infections and more than 218,000 Americans have died.
The nation is averaging more than 53,000 new cases per day and at least 26 states reported more than 1,000 new infections in a day this week.
Unlike previous times, states that are reporting alarming trends are scattered across all regions of the US. The crush of new cases in the Midwest hasn’t let up and now places like the Northeast, which has remained relatively stable since the spring, is seeing a rise in cases.