New York state overtakes Italy, has coronavirus cases second only to Spain: Reuters tally

Paramedics take a patient into emergency center at Maimonides Medical Center during outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Brooklyn New York

(Reuters) - New York state overtook Italy on Tuesday, reporting overall coronavirus cases second in the world only to Spain, according to a Reuters tally.

The U.S. state has 138,836 reported cases compared with Italy at 135,586. Spain has the most cases at 140,510. In total the United States has recorded 380,000 cases and 11,800 deaths.

The United States was prepared this week for what one official called the "peak death week" of the coronavirus.

New York state reported its deadliest day, with 731 new coronavirus deaths for a total of 5,489 fatalities, even as Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Tuesday that hospitalizations appeared to be reaching a plateau.

European countries, including hardest-hit Italy and Spain, have started looking ahead to easing lockdowns after falls in their coronavirus-related fatality rates.

In Spain, the pace of coronavirus deaths ticked up for the first time in five days on Tuesday, but there was still hope the national lockdown might be eased soon.

Italy imposed a nationwide lockdown on March 9 to slow the spread of the virus and Spain followed on March 14. New York state required all residents to stay home except for essential business on March 20 and now more than 94% of Americans are under similar orders.

(Writing by Lisa Shumaker; Editing by Howard Goller)