The death toll from COVID-19 in the U.S. is expected to climb to 230,822 by November, said the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington.
On July 22, the institute forecasted a total of 219,864 deaths from COVID-19 by November in the United States, reported CNN on Thursday.
The updated projection is based on the current scenario in the United States where the number of cases continue to rise, with some still refusing to wear masks or social distancing, or other measures, said the IHME in its projection model.
“We can now see the projected trajectory of the epidemic into the fall, and many states are expected to experience significant increases in cases and deaths in September and October,” Dr. Christopher Murray, director of IHME, as cited by Fox News.
If the country universally adopts wearing masks, the number of deaths by November would drop to nearly 198,831, the institution said.
The significance of wearing masks was also reiterated by Murray, saying mask mandates can “delay the need for re-imposing closures of businesses and have huge economic benefits.”
He added that those who refuse to wear masks “are putting their lives, their families, their friends, and their communities at risk.”
The U.S. now has over 4.6 million infections and the death toll exceeds 154,000, according to the latest tally released by Johns Hopkins University on Sunday.
(With input from Xinhua News Agency)