Half million COVID-19 deaths possible by February -study

The United States’ COVID-19 death toll could soar to a half million people by February… unless nearly all Americans wear face masks.

That’s according to a study published by the University of Washington on Friday - a day after the number of new infections nationwide neared a record high.

The study’s projection is in line with fears that colder weather will drive people indoors where the virus is more likely to spread.

(BIDEN) "This is a dark winter ahead."

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden on Friday criticized the president for his lax approach to controlling the spread:

"...holding rallies with no masks, no social distancing where people contracted the virus, inviting virus into the White House, hosting what Dr. Fauci called super-spreader event… We don't have to be held prisoner by this administration's failures."

Biden highlighted the effectiveness of mask usage, Friday.

"Masks save lives. Period."

A sentiment in line with the study, which found that half a million figure could drop by 130,000 if 95% of Americans used face coverings.

(TRUMP) "You catch it. And you know what, I caught it. I learned a lot."

During Thursday night’s presidential debate, Trump said the country was rounding the turn on coronavirus, which has already killed over 221,000 people in the United States.

"There was a spike in Florida. It's now gone. There was a very big spike in Texas. It's now gone. There was a very big spike in Arizona. It's now gone. And there are some spikes and surges and other places - they will soon be gone….”

And yet - Eight states on Thursday set new records for single-day increases in cases, and seven states reported record numbers of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

Video Transcript

- The United States' COVID-19 death toll could soar to half a million people by February, unless nearly all Americans wear face masks.

That's according to a study published by the University of Washington on Friday, a day after the number of new infections nationwide neared a record high. The study's projection is in line with fears that colder weather will drive people indoors where the virus is more likely to spread.

JOE BIDEN: This is a dark winter ahead.

- Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden on Friday criticized the president for his lax approach to controlling the spread.

JOE BIDEN: Holding rallies with no masks, no social distancing, where people contracted the, virus inviting the virus into the White House, hosting what Dr. Fauci called superspreader event. We don't have to be held prisoner by this administration's failures.

- Biden highlighted the effectiveness of mask usage, Friday.

JOE BIDEN: Because masks save lives. Period.

- A sentiment in line with a study which found that half a million figure could drop by 130,000 if 95% of Americans used face coverings.

DONALD TRUMP: You catch it. And you know, I caught it. I learned a lot.

- During Thursday night's presidential debate, Trump said the country was rounding the turn on coronavirus, which has already killed over 221,000 people in the United States.

DONALD TRUMP: There was a spike in Florida and it's now gone. There was a very big spike in Texas. It's now gone. There was a very big spike in Arizona. It's now gone. And there are some spikes and surges in other places, they will soon be gone.

- And yet, eight states on Thursday set new records for single-day increases in cases, and seven states reported record numbers of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.