May 13, 2020
I am glad that I was part of the effort to flatten the curve. We went from exponential growth to linear growth. The effort could have gone further and even eliminated COVID-19, but too many people didn’t take it seriously. If you look at national numbers it appears we have turned the corner, but if you eliminate New York’s numbers – which are going down – the number of cases and deaths in the US is still increasing. It is at a slower rate, but it is still going up.
We should have increased testing, but as of today, the United States isn’t even in the top 40 of countries for tests per one million folks. Look it up yourself at worldometer.info. It appears that we are repeating the mistakes of the 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic, where areas that reopened too quickly saw a surge in infections. (See my review of the article on the difference between how Lost Angeles and San Francisco handled the Spanish Flu at http://michaelwhughes.com/2020/04/los-angeles-compared-to-san-francisco-1918-spanish-flu-response/ )
COVID-19 needs fuel to spread. People in close quarters are the fuel. As states reopen in unsafe ways and the virus gets more fuel, it is not hard to project what will happen. I understand the reasons for reopening the economy. However, if you don’t address the biology of the problem, the economy won’t recover. I don’t think the problem is reopening the economy. I think that can be done safely. The problem is that people aren’t wearing masks, aren’t practicing social distancing, that testing in American is inadequate and that there is not a strong contact tracing effort.
Dr. Fauci warned us yesterday that reopening country too fast could be ‘really serious’ for states