Coronavirus

“it’s been circulating unchecked”

Photo TIME Magazine
JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has increased the number of coronavirus infections identified in the U.S. to over 230 after the number of cases identified in New York tripled overnight, but it seems reasonable to infer that many more people than that have been infected.

Doctors in Seattle who treated the very first American infected by the virus say they took every precaution they could to isolate the patient, but cases of the virus popped up elsewhere leading them to believe the virus has been circulating without our knowledge.

The problem, they say, is that the Trump regime simply dropped the ball on detecting the virus to begin with.

“We will presume it’s COVID-19 until proven otherwise, so we’ll put a mask on them and put them in an isolation room,” [Dr. Amy Compton-Phillips] said. She added that when transporting that first patient to an appropriate isolation room, “we had him in this special gurney with plastic around it, so he wouldn’t contaminate anything.”

But that was over a month ago. Since then, the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. has risen to 233 across at least 17 states as of Friday morning, according to Johns Hopkins’ data. For weeks, most of the U.S. cases could be traced to travel in Wuhan, the Diamond Princess cruise ship, which was quarantined off the coast of Japan, or close contact with those people. [...]

Part of the problem, Compton-Phillips said, was the CDC’s delay in getting testing kits to local health agencies and its reluctance to test patients who hadn’t traveled to Wuhan, China.

“We had real challenges initially. ... I think it’s one of the reasons we’re seeing these hot spots pop up around the country is because we simply didn’t know this had already hit our shores,” she told CNBC, adding that cases will rise as testing is expanded and labs discover new cases that were previously hidden. “I do think that this virus has been circulating now for several weeks in the U.S. ... Until now, it’s been circulating unchecked.”

It may be fair to say that no world government was adequately prepared for something like this, but it's also true that there's no excuse for it.

The coronavirus infection began in China in December and, at least for their part, the Trump regime appears to have done nothing to prepare for it. Much of the world including Trump treated the virus like someone else's problem they didn't need to bother with.

Privately, I suspect Trump probably even gloated about the damage the virus did to China's economy in very short order.

  • muselet

    Past administrations have faced global outbreaks of devastating diseases. Those administrations put competent people in charge of the US’s official response, searched out expertise, reallocated money and made certain the information they were giving the public was accurate.

    The Trump administration has done none of those things.

    I’m not an alarmist about Covid-19. It’s a nasty virus and may have a large case fatality rate (it’s hard to say for sure because nobody knows the number of infected people), but it’s not uniquely dangerous.

    The Trump administration being more concerned about stock markets and optics than about public health puts all of us at greater risk of infection. The coronavirus task force, with both Mike Pence and Larry Kudlow as prominent members, is pretty much useless, and whatever good it might hypothetically do is being actively undercut by Donald Trump’s uniquely uninformed opinionating.

    We’re not all gonna die, but the situation is worse than it could and should be.

    –alopecia

    • Draxiar

      Mike Pence has spoken publicly about the development of a two part kit that he’s personally overseeing the release of. In the first box is the test kit called “Thoughts” and in the second box is the vaccine called “Prayers”.