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Watch Live: Biden delivers Thanksgiving address

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Washington — President-elect Joe Biden is delivering remarks ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday as public health officials continue to urge Americans to scale down their holiday gatherings amid the surge in COVID-19 cases nationwide.

In his address, to be delivered from Wilmington, Delaware, the president-elect is expected to discuss "the shared sacrifices Americans are making this holiday season and say that we can and will get through the current crisis together," according to his transition team.

How to watch President-elect Joe Biden's Thanksgiving address

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the United States has surpassed 12.5 million, and the death toll is approaching 260,000, according to Johns Hopkins University. More than 88,000 people are hospitalized with COVID-19, and cases are increasing in dozens of states.

Echoing warnings from public health experts, Mr. Biden has said Americans are facing a dark winter, even as three pharmaceutical companies, Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca, have reported positive late-stage trial results for their COVID-19 vaccines. Pfizer, which is developing its vaccine with German partner BioNTech, said Friday it is asking federal regulators to allow emergency use of its coronavirus vaccine.

As Thanksgiving weekend approaches, the federal government's top scientists and doctors are urging the American people to limit their celebrations in an effort to stem the spread of the virus.

"A sacrifice now could save lives and illness and make the future much brighter as we get through this," Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an interview with ABC's "Good Morning America" on Wednesday.

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