The global death toll from the coronavirus pandemic could triple by year’s end, with an additional 1.9 million deaths, while a fall wave of infections could drive fatalities in the United States to 410,000, according to a new forecast from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington.
This new estimate reinforces warnings by many experts that cooler, less humid weather and increased time spent indoors, could lead to a surge in viral transmission this fall and winter — something typically seen with other respiratory viruses.
The institute’s forecasts were influential earlier in the pandemic in guiding policies developed by the White House coronavirus task force, but they have been criticized by some experts for making projections further into the future than can be done reliably.
The U.S. death toll from covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, now stands at 183,000, according to health data analyzed by The Washington Post. The IHME model projects that under the most likely scenario, 410,451 people in the U.S. will have died by Jan. 1. The best case scenario is 288,381 deaths, and worst-case is 620,029.