Daniel Wood

When Colin Powell died this week from complications related to COVID-19, it was a shock to many Americans.

Though scientists and federal health officials are adamant that the vaccines work well to protect against hospitalization and death, it's unnerving to hear of fully vaccinated people like Powell, or perhaps your own friends and neighbors, falling severely ill with COVID-19.

So how well do the vaccines work? How serious is the risk of a serious breakthrough infection, one that could land you in the hospital?

There's a forgotten history that should serve as a warning — wildfire isn't unique to the West.

Now the warming climate is increasing the risk of major wildfires across America. And more people are moving to fire-prone areas without realizing the danger.

Explore the project.

Coastal cities need billions of dollars to build defenses against sea level rise. Tensions are rising over where that funding will come from: taxpayers or private companies with waterfront property?

Explore the project: https://apps.npr.org/sea-level-rise-silicon-valley/

President Trump's surrogates spent Saturday at a landscaping firm in northeast Philadelphia, making unsubstantiated claims of rampant voter fraud in the city.

But it was Philadelphia's suburbs and their continued shift to Democrats that helped seal Pennsylvania — and the election — for President-elect Joe Biden.

Updated at 5:06 p.m. ET

With both President Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden still short of the 270 electoral votes needed to claim victory, anxious Americans are left with little to do but be patient and wait as election officials in key swing states furiously work to complete their vote tabulations.

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Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

Data gathered early in the pandemic showed that communities of color are disproportionately affected by COVID-19 across the United States. But incomplete data left a muddy picture of these disparities.

Today, as the U.S. has surpassed 200,000 COVID-19 deaths, and reached nearly 7 million confirmed cases, racial data is more complete, and the trend is crystal clear: People of color get sick and die of COVID-19 at rates higher than whites and higher than their share of the population.

A new national effort asks K-12 schools to voluntarily — and anonymously — report their confirmed and suspected coronavirus cases, along with the safety strategies they're using.

Note: This page is not being updated. Find a more up-to-date version of this data here.

In April, New Orleans health officials realized their drive-through testing strategy for the coronavirus wasn't working. The reason? Census tract data revealed hot spots for the virus were located in predominantly low-income African-American neighborhoods where many residents lacked cars.

Updated November 22, 2021 at 9:28 AM ET

This page is updated on Mondays and Thursdays.

In late January 2020 only a few dozen COVID-19 infections had been identified outside of China. A year later, the world tallied its first 100 million cases. It took the globe just 7 months to pass the 200 million mark, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University. Now the virus has spread to every corner of the globe and has been blamed for more than 5 million deaths.

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Updated November 22, 2021 at 9:31 AM ET

This page is updated on Mondays and Thursdays.

Updated on March 19 at 4:14 p.m. ET

On March 19, the State Department issued a travel notice advising U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the coronavirus pandemic, citing travel restrictions, mandatory quarantines and potential severe travel disruptions due to airlines cancelling many international flights.