US coronavirus cases top 20 milllion

The total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the United States has surpassed 20 million.

Data compiled by Johns Hopkins University showed the figure had reached over 20,007,000 as of 18:00 UTC on Friday.

Infections are spreading at a record pace with more than 10,000 deaths over the past three days.

Medical systems across the country are under increasing strain. Reports from Los Angeles say hospital beds are running short and morgues are filling up in the city.

A top health official warned that healthcare is on the verge of collapse.

Coronavirus vaccinations in the US began last month and about 2.8 million people have received a shot so far. Experts say it will take some time until enough people are vaccinated to contain the spread of the virus.

Cases are feared to rise further as many people have traveled during the Christmas and New Year holidays.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts another 80,000 deaths could be reported through January 23 for a total of 424,000.