The US Coronavirus Response Needs a Reset

US President Donald Trump speaks about his administration's pandemic response. Washington, DC, July 23, 2020.  Image: John Moore/Getty
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US President Donald Trump speaks about his administration's pandemic response. Washington, DC, July 23, 2020. Image: John Moore/Getty

The US continues to speed past one overused “grim milestone” for COVID-19 after another: Exceeding 150,000 COVID-19 deaths, registering one coronavirus death per minute, and having one-quarter of all COVID-19 deaths in the world, NPR and Reuters report.

In a trenchant New York Times article, Donald G. McNeil, Jr. explains that the US must adapt its response not to one outbreak, but many: “Each state, each city has its own crisis driven by its own risk factors: vacation crowds in one, bars reopened too soon in another, a revolt against masks in a third.”

The national failures (testing, shortages of personal protective equipment, universal masking, etc.) are well-known. Solutions, too, have been long recognized (including lockdowns in hotspots, limiting super-spreading events like crowded bars, expanded testing, contact tracing where possible, etc.) 

The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security posted a report yesterday  
with 10 specific recommendations that the US needs to embrace in order to reset its response. 

And the Trump administration is stepping up its game by rolling out a new “Embers Strategy,” Axios reports.

For the US, the stakes couldn’t be higher: Some expert predict 200,000 or up to 300,000 deaths by the end of the year.
 

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