Just over a year since the first reported Covid-19 case in the US, the country nears 25 million infections
The devastating number is more than double the number of infections reported in India, which has the second-highest number of cases after the US, according to Johns Hopkins University data. And it's nearly triple the number of cases in Brazil -- with the third-highest number of cases in the world, according to Johns Hopkins.
And while some states have reported encouraging trends in the past weeks, experts warn the US is still not out of the woods -- and Covid-19 variants could pose further challenges.
Particularly one variant, which was first identified in the UK. It's now been detected in at least 22 states, according to data posted Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Washington state health officials announced Saturday they found the variant in "testing samples" in the state.
"We're now in that second half of fighting this pandemic," Washington Secretary of Health Umair A. Shah said during a news conference. "It's very important for us to really double down on our efforts to prevent this strain as well as any strain from taking over, because we want to make sure that transmission does not happen in our state and the best way to do that is prevention, prevention, prevention."
Earlier this month, the CDC warned the variant appeared to be more easily transmissible and its numbers in the US could see "rapid growth" in early 2021.