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US sets new single-day COVID-19 high at more than 88,000 cases

The U.S. is likely to pass 9 million total coronavirus cases during the pandemic on Friday.

The United States recorded more than 88,000 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday, marking a new single-day record high for the country.

The U.S. had 88,521 confirmed new cases of the coronavirus, according to a tracker by Johns Hopkins University. It passed the previous high of 83,731 set on Oct. 23.

The U.S. is likely to pass 9 million total coronavirus cases on Friday. It will come 14 days after the nation reached 8 million -- the quickest per-million pace so far of the pandemic.

The U.S. continues to lead the world in deaths related to COVID-19 with nearly 229,000.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, often cited by the White House, now projects the U.S. will have an additional 100,000 deaths between now and Jan. 1 if mask usage remains at its current level. That number can be reduced by 1/3 if there is universal mask use.

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The new surge in cases faces a big test this weekend: Halloween. Health experts say some Halloween traditions like crowding on doorsteps for candy and inching your way through haunted houses heighten the risk of spreading COVID-19 and should be avoided.

Some cities have discouraged or even banned door-to-door trick-or-treating. In places where it’s allowed, there are ways to make it safer.

Some homeowners are getting creative, building candy chutes where they can deliver goodies from a socially safe distance to little ghouls and goblins. Various devices such as plastic grabbers can help you hand out candy without any physical contact, says Dr. Nipunie Rajapakse, a pediatric specialist at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Credit: AP
FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, file photo, Salt Lake County Health Department public health nurse Lee Cherie Booth performs a coronavirus test outside the Salt Lake County Health Department in Salt Lake City. About half of U.S. states have seen their highest daily infection numbers so far at some point in October, and the country came very close to back-to-back record daily infection rates last week. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

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