US extends social distancing guidelines till April 30

United States President Donald Trump on Sunday announced that he would be extending the coronavirus-prompted social distancing guidelines. 

The guidelines were originally announced for 15 days and were supposed to end today. 

However, the US president announced that the measures, which include restrictions on large gatherings, would continue till April 30. 

"The better you do, the faster this whole nightmare will end," said Trump. 

The White House's social distancing guidance advises all Americans to avoid groups of more than 10 and urges older people to stay at home.

Trump also said that the government would announce its plans and strategy going forward on Tuesday. 

"We're going to have a meeting, speech, press conference or something on Tuesday," said Trump. "We will be finalizing these plans and providing a summary of our findings, supporting data and strategy to the American people."

Trump also predicted that the US would hit its peak death rate in two weeks.

"Easter should be the peak number," Trump said. 

Easter, which falls on April 12, had earlier been touted by Trump as the date by which restrictions would be lifted. In a clear back down from this, Trump on Sunday said he expects the country "will be well on our way to recovery" by June 1.

Trump also addressed statements by top medical advisor, Anthony Fauci, who estimated on Sunday that the virus could result in 100,000 to 200,000 deaths in the United States. Trump said this was “a horrible number” but would have been much worse without the lockdown measures the US has put in place. 

As of March 29, the US had reported over 139,000 cases of COVID-19 with a death toll of over 2400.