• The United States recorded close to 11,000 new coronavirus cases Monday
  • It reported more than 100 deaths in a day for the first time
  • A man from Arizona was poisoned to death after taking chloroquine, a drug Trump touted as a cure for COVID-19

The United States led the world in total new COVID-19 cases on Monday -- a horrific first -- indicating the U.S. is likely tracing the paths taken by both Italy and the United Kingdom.

The U.S. reported 131 deaths in a single day from COVID-19 -- the first time in this pandemic the death toll has reached and exceeded 100 in a day. The number of deaths was the fourth highest in the world on Monday alone. The U.S. also reported almost 11,000 new confirmed cases on Monday -- the largest number in the world and more than twice that of Italy's.

The U.S. continues to break one terrible record after another as the COVID-19 virus spreads like wildfire across the mainland. On March 21, the U.S. became the world's third most COVID-19-infected country. With 545 total deaths as of Monday, the U.S. now has the sixth highest death toll in the world, according to both CNN and Worldometer. New York State has the most deaths in a single state with 157.

As of March 22, 6:13 p.m. ET, the U.S. reported 32,717 cases and 414 deaths, according to data from the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University. As of 6:16 p.m. ET March 23, CSSE reported 43,214 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the U.S.

Worldometer data as of Sunday, 21:41 GMT, reveals 32,356 cases and 414 deaths in the U.S. As of Monday, 22:58 GMT, Worldometer reported 43,449 U.S. cased and 545 deaths, which was 132 more than Sunday's.

In Arizona, a man had died while his wife is in stable condition, after both took the anti-malaria drug, chloroquine, which president Donald Trump recently touted as a treatment for COVID-19 despite the absence of clinical studies proving its safety and the lack of approval from the World Health Organization.

The Banner Health hospital system in Phoenix said the couple (both in their 60s) ingested chloroquine phosphate, "an additive commonly used at aquariums to clean fish tanks." Alexis Kramer-Ainza, spokesperson for Banner Health, confirmed to BuzzFeed News the couple took the additive because they most likely read about chloroquine online and in recent news reports.

"We understand people are panicked and looking for answers," she said. "This is not the way to handle it. Self-medicating will only cause more damage."

Trump has said chloroquine could be instrumental in the fight against the coronavirus. Last week, he said chloroquine, which the FDA has not yet approved for treating COVID-19, "could be a game changer."

The largest US airlines are pushing President Donald Trump, pictured March 21, 2020, to help them stave off mass layoffs
The largest US airlines are pushing President Donald Trump, pictured March 21, 2020, to help them stave off mass layoffs AFP / JIM WATSON

Other COVID-19 news in the U.S., Monday:

  • Vice president Mike Pence, head of the federal coronavirus task force, said during a press briefing 313,000 coronavirus tests having been completed with more than 41,000 tests coming back positive. This huge number apparently includes state laboratories and hospital laboratories.
  • Trump issued an executive order prohibiting the hoarding of medical equipment and supplies used for treating and preventing COVID-19. He said the order will “prohibit the hoarding of vital medical equipment and supplies, such as hand sanitizers, face masks, and personal protective equipment."
  • Trump mentioned a desire for the U.S. to soon "open for business." He said he was "referring to the timing of the opening, essentially, the opening of our country. Because we have it pretty well shut-down in order to get rid of this invisible enemy."

    "We cannot let the cure be worse than the problem itself. We're not going to let the cure be worse than the problem. At the end of the 15-day period, we'll make a decision as to which way we want to go," he said during the daily coronavirus briefing at the White House.
  • Florida became the first state to order a mandatory 14-day self-isolation for travelers coming from airports in New York and New Jersey. Gov. Ron DeSantis said travelers will be met by local or state law enforcement, and personnel from the Florida Department of Health. Passengers will also be subject to temperature checks. Those planning to stay with family in Florida won't be exempt from the order.

    “Today there’s over 190 direct flights from the New York City area to the state of Florida, and I would reckon, given the outbreak there, that every single flight has somebody on it who’s positive for Covid-19,” said DeSantis.

    There are at least 1,171 cases of COVID-19 and 13 deaths in Florida, according to CNN Health’s tally of US cases.
  • As of Sunday, New York State had 15,600 confirmed cases of the coronavirus out of the U.S. total of 32,717 cases. New York accounted for an incredible 48% of all COVID-19 cases in the country. That toll was even worse on Monday.

    As of March 23, there were 20,875 confirmed cases in New York state and 157 deaths. New York still has the highest number of confirmed cases of any state in the United States. Its total is more than 10 times that of Washington, the state with the second highest number of confirmed cases. New York confirmed its first case of COVID-19 only on March 1.