Newly reported Covid-19 infections in the U.S. were up slightly from a day earlier, and deaths were down, as the overall downward trend in cases continued.
The nation reported 29,293 new coronavirus cases for Wednesday, according to the latest data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. That was up from 27,819 the previous day but down from 35,878 a week earlier.
It was the fifth consecutive daily tally below 30,000, numbers not seen in the country since last June, as increased vaccinations have helped change the pandemic’s trajectory.
Not all states report data on a daily basis. The seven-day moving average, which helps smooth out states’ irregular reporting schedules, was 30,263 as of Wednesday, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of Johns Hopkins data. The 14-day average was 33,497. Both averages have now been falling for over a month.
In all, more than 33 million Covid-19 cases have been reported in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins data. There were 655 deaths recorded in the country for Wednesday, bringing the nation’s death toll to nearly 588,000. Wednesday’s figure was down from 760 a day earlier and 849 a week earlier.
The declining case count comes as more Americans are vaccinated against Covid-19. Nearly 38% of the population has now been fully vaccinated, and nearly 48% have received at least one dose, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show.
Vaccination levels vary by state. In Maine, more than 50% of people have been fully vaccinated, while in Mississippi, 26.2% have been. Nationally, the pace of inoculations has been slowing. The average daily number of doses administered over the past week is 1.8 million, according to a Journal analysis of CDC data. That is down from 2.2 million the prior week and 3.4 million in mid-April.
New York, where 43.4% of residents have been fully vaccinated, officially reopened on Wednesday. Fully vaccinated people can now go maskless in most outdoor settings and many indoor ones as well, though Gov. Andrew Cuomo said businesses could still screen customers for vaccination or continue to require masks for all.
The European Union, meanwhile, took a step toward opening its borders to fully vaccinated travelers, setting off a flurry of questions among those hoping to head to the continent. The decision, taken Wednesday by ambassadors from the 27 member countries, must still be formally approved by national leaders, which could come as soon as Thursday.
World-wide, nearly 165 million Covid-19 cases have been reported overall and more than 3.4 million people have died, according to Johns Hopkins data.