Roundup: U.S. key COVID-19 metrics show decline this week

WASHINGTON, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- The rates of new COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths across the United States are on the decline this week, though some areas are still reporting wrenching death rates, according to a latest report of The COVID Tracking Project.

Weekly new cases were down 20 percent, the lowest number of new cases for a non-holiday week since mid-November, according to the tracking project.

After 16 straight weeks of increases, average weekly hospitalizations dropped 4 percent this week, a modest improvement, but a good sign, said the report.

The number of people currently hospitalized with COVID-19 declined by more than 10 percent from a week ago in 24 states. Hospitalizations are declining or flat in every state but New York, according to the tracking project.

States reported 21,301 COVID-19 deaths this week, the second-highest number of deaths of the pandemic to date.

However, the situation in U.S. long-term care facilities remain alarming. For the second week in a row, long-term care facilities across the nation reported the highest death toll since May last year, more than 7,000 residents and staff, according to the tracking project.

Week-to-week comparisons show new deaths and new cases are on the decline nationwide, according to a ABC News report, citing an internal memo of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Thirty-one states and territories are in a downward trajectory of new cases, according to the memo. Twenty states and territories are in an upward trajectory of new cases while five jurisdictions are at a plateau.

A total of 191,799 new cases and 3,895 deaths were reported across the country on Friday, according to the data updated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Saturday.

California, the most populous state in the United States, once again reported its highest daily rise in COVID-19 deaths at 764 on Friday.

The state, home to around 40 million residents, became the first in the United States to register more than 3 million COVID-19 cases earlier this week.

The United States has recorded more than 24.95 million COVID-19 cases with over 416,700 related deaths as of Saturday afternoon, according to the real-time count kept by Johns Hopkins University.

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