It's been eight months since the first confirmed infection from the novel coronavirus in Washington state. As deadly as COVID-19 is, Americans should reflect when 200,000 died in a single month from a far deadlier virus 102 years ago.
Shortly after a private White House report blasted Georgia's pandemic response, Gov. Brian Kemp issued an executive order allowing cities and counties to impose requirements on mask-wearing. The report was leaked to The Atlanta-Journal Constitution.
While President Trump is publicly stating the virus "will soon disappear," his task force is releasing detailed, county-level data on how all 50 states are dealing with the coronavirus and making recommendations – but the reports are not public.
A top public health expert in the Trump administration warned that the U.S. is in a "new phase" of the pandemic, different from March and April when the coronavirus largely affected a few big cities. Now urban and rural areas alike are vulnerable.
Younger people are making up more of the new cases of COVID-19 as the coronavirus explodes in the Sunbelt states, particularly Arizona, California, Florida, and Texas, bringing with it new attention on bars as settings for high viral transmission.
President Trump wants states to reopen businesses quickly but doesn't want to have the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provide directions to business owners and transit agencies on how to open without spreading the coronavirus.
As President Donald Trump eyes May 1 for "opening up states," he might want to look at states that never shut down businesses to understand his public health advisor's warning that "the virus makes the timeline."
Public health experts were pleased that Trump extended his coronavirus guidelines, but they remain advisory, left to state and local governments to implement. Nine states have yet to issue stay-at-home orders, leaving the nation vulnerable to COVID.
Four parishes and one town in Louisiana, which has the nation's highest COVID-19 per capita death rate, are implementing strict containment strategies that go well beyond the statewide stay at home order to reduce community spread.
Shortly after the two health experts on his task force estimated that the COVID-19 death toll could reach 200,000 and that no metro area would be spared, President Trump announced on Sunday that he would extend the 15-day guidelines through April.
After repeatedly stating on Saturday afternoon that he was considering a quarantine for New York, New Jersey, and parts of Connecticut to contain the spread of COVID-19, President Trump tweeted a plan to issue a travel advisory.
President Trump signaled that he was considering lifting the public health guidelines at the end of the 15-day period on March 30 due to the severe economic impacts caused by containment strategies despite mounting deaths caused by the pandemic.