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Deaths from COVID-19 in the US hit another high in a day with more than 4,300

Coronavirus deaths in the United States hit another one-day high of more than 4,300, and the country’s attention was largely focused on the aftermath of the rape of the Capitol building on January 6.

The country’s total death toll from COVID-19 has dwarfed 380,000, according to Johns Hopkins University, and is fast approaching the number of Americans killed in World War II, or about 407,000. Confirmed infections have exceeded 22.8 million.

With the country facing a political crisis, the United States recorded 4,327 deaths on January 12, according to the Johns Hopkins tally. Arizona and California are among the worst affected states.

The daily figure is subject to review, but deaths have risen dramatically in the past two and a half months, and the country is now in the deadliest phase of the outbreak so far, even as the vaccine is being launched. New cases are running at nearly a quarter of a million a day on average.

Several COVID-19 vaccine tents were set up in the State Farm Stadium parking lot in Glendale, Arizona, on January 12, 2021. (Ross D. Franklin / AP Photo)
Residents wait to be cleared after receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at The Palace assisted living facility in Coral Gables, Florida on January 12, 2021 (Lynne Sladky / AP Photo)

More than 9.3 million Americans have received their first injection of the vaccine, or less than 3 percent of the population, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s far short of the hundreds of millions that experts say will need to be vaccinated to beat the outbreak.

The effort is increasing across the country. Large-scale vaccination sites have been opened in stadiums and other venues, allowing people to get vaccinated through their car windows.

Additionally, an increasing number of states have begun offering vaccines to the next group in line, seniors, with a minimum age that varies from place to place at 65, 70 or 75. So far, workers in Health and nursing home residents have been given priority in most places.

And the Trump administration announced plans Tuesday to accelerate the vaccination campaign by releasing the entire supply of doses, rather than keeping large quantities in reserve to make sure people get their second injection on time.