The United States government orders 100,000 bags of corpses
The country has beaten the global mark of registered deaths in a single day
In the United States, each day is worse than the last. On Thursday he beat the global record of deaths recorded in a single day from the coronavirus, with 1,169 deaths according to John Hopkins University, several weeks after reaching the peak of the pandemic. For two months the US did not prepare for it. "Trump bet that the virus would disappear when time warmed up and it went wrong," a White House source told CNN. What it is preparing for is dealing with the dead, collateral victims of that miscalculation.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has commissioned the Pentagon to prepare 100,000 body bags and 85 refrigeration trucks. The chilling figure is conservative. Dr. Deborah Birx, White House coordinator for the coronavirus, estimates that at best the epidemic will claim 100,000 to 240,000 lives, "if all mitigation measures are carried out." In other words, in an ideal world in which all Americans maintain social distance six feet (two meters), stay home, avoid touching your face "and be careful to wash your hands," he said. Without them, "the estimate is that between 1.5 and 2 million people in the US would succumb to this virus," he reported.
Single New York already records nearly 500 deaths daily and the figure doubles every three days. Governor Andrew Cuomo has reported that the state where there are already 60,000 confirmed cases only has respirators left for six more days. Doctors have discretion to decide which patients to use them with, and Cuomo gave a hint yesterday: "The more days you wear the respirator, the less chance you have of getting out alive."
Despite the exodus that now allows crossing Fifth Avenue without looking, too many millions of human beings remain trapped in small apartments for those who pay fortunes and those who escape at the slightest opportunity. With more than 50,000 confirmed cases and 5,500 daily infections, the mayor of Bill de Blasio has urged the population not to go out without a mask, something that can no longer be purchased. "It doesn't have to be sophisticated, you can do it yourself at home," he suggested. «And it is not just for you, it is to protect others. There are a lot of people out there who have no symptoms but have the virus. "
A study carried out in Singapore estimates that 10% of infections occur through people who still do not have any symptoms. In Atlanta, Robert Redfield, director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) upped the ante by estimating that 25% of those infected may be asymptomatic. No one will know exactly until they are done. antibody tests in the blood to count the population that has been exposed to the virus without knowing it, the next step in controlling the epidemic. Meanwhile, "you have to protect yourself from anyone who seems healthy," he warned.
The federal government plans to extend those guidelines to the entire country through the CDC, but it is encountering one obstacle: Donald Trump. The president disavowed Thursday the mayor of New York, the governor of California and many who already recommended the use of the mask by siding with those who do not want to follow those tips. "If people want to put it on, put it on, but I don't think it's mandatory," he decided. And for those who want but cannot find them, Trump offers a solution: "Put on a scarf, I think it is better, because they are thicker and cover you more, depending on the material."
His collaborators did not blink. The debate among government professionals is that face masks can offer a false sense of security that relax other, more vital measures. The concern of Trump's nationalist advisers is that they import those face masks from other countries. For the White House Economic Adviser Peter Navarro, the crisis in medical supplies confirms the policies of the president who popularized America First. "Buy American producers, strengthen our borders and have a strong manufacturing base," he recalled at a press conference. "What we have learned from this crisis is that we are too dependent on other countries for medical products, so we will deregulate the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Federal Medicines Agency (FDA) to speed up the domestic production. We will never again have to compete with other countries for things we need and depend on the rest of the world, "he vowed.
Faced with accusations that his government is trying to hijack those requests with aggressive tactics, Trump defends the opposite. "To be honest, we've let commissions go out for other important stuff sites like respirators because they had made the order a long time ago, like in Italy. I could have prevented it but I said, "no, you can't do that, they have serious problems, you have to let it out," he said. "We had another to Spain and I said, 'Let him out.'
There is no data to support that statement, the White House no longer bothers to justify the president's statements. Only Congress studies creating a commission to investigate why so much time was lost in facing an epidemic that was coming and that will cost so many lives.