The country is likely to spend about $ 7 trillion “because of one small virus,” Redfield said during a hearing of the House’s Energy and Trade Committee.
Redfield commented that half of U.S. states are noticing stings in new coronavirus cases – and it’s not just because of increased testing, health officials say.
Tuesday, 25 states recorded higher new case rates compared to last week: Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
And no state has effectively transitioned from a home-based order “to a public health model of testing, monitoring, isolation, and quarantine,” said Dr. Richard Besser, a former acting director of the U.S. CDC.
“We need to figure out how to make that transition a success or any state that reopens – even those that did a really good job of destroying this – will experience quite dramatic increases,” Besser told CNN Tuesday.
“And we’ll go back to where we were.”
If the U.S. doesn’t lose control of the coronavirus pandemic by the fall, “you’re essentially chasing after a forest fire,” Dr. Anthony Fauci told the House Committee on Tuesday.
The goal would be complete control of the virus, not just its mitigation, which is still happening, said Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Redfield said the virus has highlighted decades of undermining investment in “fundamental public health data capabilities.” Now is the time to fix the broken system, he added.
“This has to be a partnership. It’s not all the burden of the federal government to invest in public health at the local level,” Redfield said. In reality, “if your CDC funding disappears tomorrow, the public health infrastructure across this state would just collapse.”
“We’re the backbone of that right now.”
“The next few weeks will be critical in our ability to deal with those surgeries we notice in Florida, Texas, Arizona and other states – they’re not the only ones having difficulties,” Fauci said.
During Fauci’s testimony at Tuesday’s hearing, the best national infectious disease expert pleaded guilty to all Americans:
“Plan A: Don’t go to the crowd. Plan B: If you do, be sure to wear a mask.”
Why the timing of these increases makes sense
Health experts say the peaks in the new cases now coincide with conditions that began reopening a few weeks ago – with many people refusing or giving up safety measures such as wearing masks and social distance.
And while health officials are reporting jumps in cases among younger people, Redfield said more than half of nursing homes in the state – over 7,000 – have a Covid-19 patient on Tuesday.
“Two weeks ago, we had 17 states with an increased number of cases,” said Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Diseases Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.
Now that number has jumped to at least 25 states. “And we will probably move more states into that category of growing cases very soon,” Osterholm said on Tuesday. “So we see what, in a sense, is the virus’s reaction to opening and establishing much more mutual contact.”
After new exposure to this virus, symptoms can last up to two weeks. After that, people can’t be tested right away. It can then take even longer for severe cases to require hospitalization.
While health officials expected new cases as states reopened, many did not expect new cases and hospitals to increase so dramatically in some places.
Arizona set a new record this week in the number of people hospitalized on a given day with Covid-19 – about 2,000, data from the COVID Monitoring Project show. The state’s seven-day touching average of hospitalizations is also rising.
“People are admitted to hospital beds and admitted to the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) faster than discharged,” said Will Humble, executive director of the Arizona Public Health Organization.
Since about 84% of the state beds in the ICU are already filled, Humble said he worries that hospitals will enter “crisis standards of care,” which basically means less care for everyone, not just people with covid- 19 “.
In the last two weeks, California has recorded more than 35% of the total infection from the entire pandemic. The state recorded 5,019 confirmed cases of coronavirus on Monday, another daily increase, data from the California Department of Public Health showed. Hospitalizations are also at the highest level for Covid-19 patients.
It’s not just intensified testing
Some politicians attribute the spikes in new cases to increased testing. But in many places, the number of new Covid-19 cases is disproportionately higher than the number of new trials being conducted, the researchers say.
“In many states, testing is increasing, but the percentage of those who are positive is actually going much higher,” Osterholm said.
“This isn’t an artifact at all just more interrogation.”
Even with intensified testing, the country is still “far behind the virus,” says the former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.
“We’re still reacting. We’re not ahead of that,” Kathleen Sebelius said.
‘It’s moving very fast in the wrong direction’
What is happening in Arizona and other states could wipe out much of the progress made during the home stay order week.
“The number of new cases stabilized in early May, and in fact the positivity rate (during testing) was improving,” Humble said.
“We came out of our home stay warrant in mid-May, and what we saw was that around May 26, there was that increase in cases that matched the completion of the home stay warrant.”
After Houston reported the largest daily number of new Covid-19 cases, Turner urged residents to take security measures more seriously.
“This is a health crisis,” he said. “Honestly, your failure, for example, to wear masks … or to engage in social distancing, directly affects someone else.”
Where states record a steady or improving number
In 12 states, the number of new everyday cases is generally kept stable: Alaska, Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
And in 13 states, the number of new cases is generally declining: Alabama, Connecticut, Indiana, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, South Dakota and Vermont.
“New York has moved from one of the highest infection rates in the country to one of the lowest because we made decisions based on science, not politics,” government Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday.
“In other states, we notice what happens when you first open up, regardless of metrics or data – it’s bad for public health and the economy, and states that reopen in a hurry now see a boomerang.”
Cuomo is considering forcing visitors from states with a large transfer to quarantine upon arrival in New York State, he said.
CNN’s Gisela Crespo, Jenn Selva, Jen Christensen, Andrea Kane, Cheri Mossburg, Maggie Fox and Theresa Waldrop contributed to this report.
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