Though national statistics have improved drastically since January, they have plateaued in the last week or so, and the US is still reporting more than 65,000 new cases a day on average — comparable to the peak of last summer’s surge. The country is averaging more than 2,000 deaths per day, though deaths are a lagging indicator because it can take weeks after being infected with the coronavirus to die from it.
New, more contagious variants of the virus are circulating in the country, with the potential to push case counts upward again. Testing has fallen 30 percent in recent weeks, leaving experts worried about how quickly new outbreaks will be known. And millions of Americans are still waiting to be vaccinated — including workers in restaurants, which are now open in vast numbers across the country.