A record high of more than 800 fatalities were reported in just one day on Tuesday in New York City, according to city health officials.
The national daily total of 1,909 new deaths was also a record high, according to Johns Hopkins University. It is unclear whether the New York City figure was used in compiling the US total.
Still, the distressing numbers came as some officials expressed hope that some areas of the country were reaching the peak of the curves of cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
Earlier, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo had said the numbers of hospitalizations in his state was reaching a plateau but residents still needed to be disciplined.
"We have to be smart. We have to be safe. ... We do that by staying at home," he told reporters.
US coronavirus cases are nearing 400,000 and the death toll has reached at least 12,895. However, health officials say parts of the country that leaned in heavily to social distancing measures may be seeing a slowdown in the growth of cases.
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