UNDATED (AP) -- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending that gatherings of 50 people or more in US be canceled or postponed over the next eight weeks because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The dramatic recommendation Sunday night came Americans struggled to come to terms with how to change their daily habits.

The CDC added that proper precautions should be taken at any event, including making sure people are washing their hands and not getting too close.

But in a sign of the difficulty of striking the right balance, the statement from the CDC also said the recommendation does not apply to "the day to day operation of organizations such as schools, institutes of higher learning, or businesses."

The death toll from COVID-19 in the United States climbed to 64, while about 3,500 have been infected with the virus that causes it.

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