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Nov. 17, 2021, 6:48 a.m. EST

Coronavirus tally: Global cases of COVID-19 above 254.5 million and FDA may authorize boosters for all adults by Thursday

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By Ciara Linnane

The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness climbed above 254.5 million on Wednesday, while the death toll edged above 5.11 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University . The U.S. continues to lead the world with a total of 47.3 million cases and 765,913 deaths. The U.S. is still averaging more than 1,100 deaths a day, according to a New York Times tracker, although cases and hospitalizations are declining, outside of hot spots that include Illinois, Minnesota, Colorado and New Mexico. The Food and Drug Administration is aiming to authorize booster doses of the vaccine developed by Pfizer /zigman2/quotes/202877789/composite PFE -2.33% and German partner BioNTech /zigman2/quotes/214419716/composite BNTX -5.77% for all adults above the age of 18 as early as Thursday, the New York Times reported, citing people familiar with the agency's plans. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's advisory panel is due to meet Friday to discuss data on the safety and efficacy of boosters. If both public agencies agree, the program could be expanded as soon as this weekend. India is second by cases after the U.S. at 34.5 million and has suffered 464,153 deaths. Brazil has second highest death toll at 611,478 and 21.9 million cases. In Europe, Russia has the most fatalities at 254,292 deaths, followed by the U.K. at 143,598.

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