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Expand chart
Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. topped 300,000 coronavirus deaths on Monday, per Johns Hopkins data.

The big picture: The U.S. is averaging 2,427 deaths a day — 300 more fatalities per day than during the pandemic's initial peak in the spring, per the COVID Tracking Project. It took less than three months for the U.S. to record another 100,000 deaths.

  • U.S. deaths have reached "the equivalent of losing the entire population of cities such as Orlando, Pittsburgh or St. Louis," the Washington Post notes.

Where it stands: The U.S. began its largest vaccination campaign in U.S. history on Monday, with the first Americans receiving Pfizer-BioNtech's COVID-19 vaccine.

  • UPS and FedEx plan to deliver 2.9 million doses to about 150 locations in all 50 states by Monday, with shipments to another 450 sites between Tuesday and Wednesday, according to Operation Warp Speed's Gen. Gustave Perna.

Between the lines: Black and Hispanic Americans are 2.8 times as likely to die from the coronavirus as white people, per CDC data. Native Americans are 2.6 times as likely to die from the virus.

The bottom line: If the U.S. death rate had matched that of other wealthy countries, between about 55,000 and 215,000 Americans would still be alive, an October analysis by Columbia University's National Center for Disaster Preparedness found.

Go deeper ... In photos: First vaccines administered in U.S.

Go deeper

22 hours ago - Health

CDC director: "I can't tell you how much vaccine we have"

CDC director Rochelle Walensky, newly appointed by President Biden, told Fox News on Sunday that the administration does not know the current number of COVID vaccines available for distribution — due to a lack of data gathered by the agency under Trump — making it more difficult for states to accurately plan.

Why it matters: Hospitals in states including Texas, South Carolina, New York, and California have canceled thousands of appointments due to running low on vaccines or nearly depleting their share, the New York Times reports.

Coronavirus has inflamed global inequality

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

History will likely remember the pandemic as the "first time since records began that inequality rose in virtually every country on earth at the same time." That's the verdict from Oxfam's inequality report covering the year 2020 — a terrible year that hit the poorest, hardest across the planet.

Why it matters: The world's poorest were already in a race against time, facing down an existential risk in the form of global climate change. The coronavirus pandemic could set global poverty reduction back as much as a full decade, according to the World Bank.

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