The number of deaths in the U.S. has reached 1,041, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University.
New York City has the highest number of fatalities at 280. The total number of cases in the U.S. was at 68,960, according to the data. America's first death was reported on Feb. 29 and the rate has spiked over the past two weeks as extreme public health measures go into effect to combat the virus. States and cities have instituted shelter-in-place and stay-at-home orders in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.
The worldwide death count surpassed 21,000 on Wednesday. Five other countries have death tolls higher than the U.S. — Italy, Spain, Iran, China and France. Italy's number more than doubles that of Spain.
The Senate came to a deal Wednesday on a $2 trillion aid package that includes $150 billion for hospitals and medical centers to handle the surging case loads.
Governors and local governments are playing an outsized role during the crisis as states enjoy broad autonomy under the Constitution and the Trump administration has left most of the decision-making to them.