Peter Wells in New York
The number of coronavirus hospitalisations in the US topped 70,000 for the first time on Monday, reflecting one of the most troubling metrics of the latest phase of the pandemic around the country.
A total of 73,014 people were currently in US hospitals being treated for Covid-19, according to data from Covid Tracking Project, up from 69,993 on Sunday.
Hospitalisations were at a record for the seventh day running, having last week overtaken the long-standing peak from mid-April when northeastern states like New York and New Jersey were hit hard during the early stages of the pandemic.
Eight of the 12 states in the Midwest reported a peak level of hospitalisations on Monday, according to a Financial Times analysis of Covid Tracking Project data and there are a record 25,494 people currently in hospitals across the region.
That is 863 patients fewer than in hospitals in southern states, although the overall level of hospitalisations in this region remains about 27 per cent below its summer peak.
US states collectively reported a further 148,532 coronavirus cases, up from nearly 146,400 on Sunday, according to a Financial Times analysis of Covid Tracking Project data.
Tennessee (7,951), Virginia (2,677) and Vermont (119) each reported single-day records for new cases. Michigan (13,162), Kansas (7,234) and Connecticut (4,639) also set new peaks, but were all playing catch-up for at least one day of no reporting over the weekend.
Hawaii and North Dakota were the only two states where the seven-day average of cases was lower than a week ago.
States attributed a further 581 deaths to coronavirus on Monday, down from 680 on Sunday and compared with 580 on Monday last week.
Fatalities have averaged 1,129 a day over the past week, the highest level since early August.