Expand chart
Data: The COVID Tracking Project, state health departments; Map: Andrew Witherspoon, Danielle Alberti, Sara Wise/Axios

The coronavirus continues to spread nearly unchecked across almost the entire country: 37 states saw their caseloads increase over the past week, and only two states experienced a meaningful improvement.

Why it matters: These rapidly escalating outbreaks will translate into thousands of deaths and make it all the harder to safely reopen schools or otherwise reclaim some sense of normalcy.

By the numbers: New infections rose by at least 10% last week in 37 states, spanning every region of the country. Six states and Washington, D.C. experienced spikes greater than 50%.

  • Nationwide, new infections rose by 21% since last week — and last week they were up 24% from the week before.

Between the lines: Even some of the states that may not immediately register as bad news are still, in fact, in a bad spot.

  • California, for example, is holding steady after weeks of substantial increases — meaning the scale of its outbreak has still exploded over the course of July and is not beginning to shrink.
  • And while Arizona did experience an 11% decline in new cases over the past week, that barely puts a dent in the stark increases the state has racked up over the course of the summer. There are now roughly 3,200 active cases there.

How it works: Each week, Axios tracks the new confirmed cases in each state. We use a seven-day average to minimize the distortions that can come from single-day reporting.

  • Our map has shown persistent, widespread deterioration for several weeks.

What's next: Experts hope this outbreak won't be as deadly as the virus' initial attack on the New York area, in part because more young people are getting sick now.

  • But deaths are a trailing indicator, and these new waves of infection will undoubtedly kill thousands of people. And if the U.S. doesn't get the virus' spread contained soon, that toll will just keep rising.

Go deeper: We're losing the war on the coronavirus

Go deeper

Aug 13, 2020 - Health

U.S. records deadliest coronavirus day of the summer

Healthcare workers handling coronavirus tests in Los Angeles on August 11. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

The U.S. reported 1,485 deaths due to the coronavirus on Wednesday, COVID Tracking Project data shows.

Why it matters: It's the highest single-day COVID-19 death toll since May 15, when the country reported 1,507 deaths. The U.S. has seen a total of 157,758 deaths from the virus.

Updated 6 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand confirmed Thursday there are 13 local cases linked to the four who tested positive for COVID-19, ending 102 days of no community spread. Auckland locked down Wednesday for 72 hours and the rest of NZ is under lesser restrictions.

By the numbers: Over 751,000 people have died of the novel coronavirus globally and another 20.7 million have tested positive, per Johns Hopkins. More than 12.8 million have recovered from the virus.

20 hours ago - Health

We're doing a lot less coronavirus testing

Data: The COVID Tracking Project; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The U.S. is cutting back on coronavirus testing. Nationally, the number of tests performed each day is about 17% lower than it was at the end of July, and testing is also declining in hard-hit states.

Why it matters: This big reduction in testing has helped clear away delays that undermined the response to the pandemic. But doing fewer tests can also undermine the response to the pandemic.