Summer was supposed to mark America’s independence from Covid but it’s ending with the US firmly under the command of coronavirus, with deaths per day back up to levels in March.

The US recorded 26,800 deaths and more than 4.2 million infections in August. The number of monthly positive cases was the fourth-highest total since the start of the pandemic.

The US is averaging more than 150,000 new cases per day; levels not seen since January.

Deaths are close to 1,500 per day, up more than a third since late August. Overall, the outbreak is still well below the all-time peaks reached over the winter when deaths topped 3,400 a day and new cases at 250,000 per day.

The US death toll stands at more than 650,000, with one major forecast model projecting it will top 750,000 by December 1.

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