By Servet Gunerigok
WASHINGTON (AA) - The death toll in the U.S. from the novel coronavirus surpassed the 30,000 mark late Wednesday, according to Johns Hopkins University.
The university's running tally counted 30,844 deaths and 638,111 cases.
The U.S. continues to lead worldwide deaths from the virus after Italy reported 21,645, followed by Spain with 18,812.
More than 52,600 people have recovered in the U.S., according to the data.
New York is the state worst-hit by the pandemic, with 14,064 deaths and more than 214,698 cases, followed by New Jersey with 3,156 deaths and 71,030 cases.
The bulk of the new deaths came hours after President Donald Trump said the country has passed its peak on new coronavirus cases.
"The battle continues, but the latest data suggests nationwide that the U.S. has passed the peak on new cases. Hopefully, that would continue and we will continue to make great progress," Trump said during a White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing.
Trump also said new guidelines would be announced Thursday afternoon to reopen the country.
Since the virus emerged last December in the Chinese city of Wuhan, it has spread to at least 185 countries and regions.
There are more than 2 million confirmed infections globally and nearly 137,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins. More than 512,000 have recovered.