Rising amount of COVID deaths putting pressure on hospitals

(CNN) With a little over half of the U.S. population fully vaccinated against COVID-19, health officials are continuing to sound the alarm on the devastating impact of the Delta variant in hotspots across the country.

As the White House tries to convince more Americans to get vaccinated against COVID-19, President Biden announced a new plan Wednesday to send 500 million additional doses to developing countries next year.

President Biden said, “We need to do our part: governments, the private sector, civil society, leaders, philanthropists.”

The total U.S. commitment is now at 1.1 billion doses being donated to other nations.

“This is an all-hands-on deck crisis,” Biden explained. “And the good news is, we know how to beat this pandemic. Vaccines, public health measures, and collective action.”

But many wonder how long it’ll take for hospitals here at home to start feeling some relief. Doctors and nurses across the country are being pushed to the brink as they struggle to handle the latest surge in COVID-19 cases. Overwhelmed hospitals are now rationing care due to limited ICU capacity.

Professor of Emergency Medicine at Brown University Dr. Megan Ranney said, “As this disease spreads, right, it spreads throughout the entire community. It’s more likely to catch those more vulnerable people when there’s high numbers of unvaccinated there.”

Nearly 90,000 people nationwide are hospitalized with the virus, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. More than 2,000 new deaths are being reported daily, the most since winter.

Dr. Ranney said, “We are not out of the woods, and I fully expect case counts to go up across the country over the weeks and months to come.”

The Delta variant is playing a key role in driving up the numbers.

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