May 9, 2022 - Health

1 million COVID deaths: Visualizing the scale of loss suffered in America

A collage of vignettes depicting scenes of life during the pandemic, including a person wearing a mask, washing their hands, and a gravestone.
Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

As COVID-19 began to spread in the U.S. in March 2020, Trump administration officials estimated 100,000 to 200,000 Americans might die. A worst-case scenario, they said, meant between 1.6 million and 2.2 million might perish. The figures felt staggeringly high.

  • Two years later, the U.S. has reached 1 million deaths even as COVID has faded from the headlines.

At this grim milestone, we sought to refocus on the scale of loss suffered. Read our special report here.

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