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Coronavirus Live Updates: 200,000 Americans Could Die, Warn Top Health Officials

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Coronavirus Live Updates: 200,000 Americans Could Die, Warn Top Health Officials

Two of the top doctors who advised President Trump about the coronavirus pandemic warned on Sunday that some 200,000 Americans could die during the outbreak, even with much of the country already under orders to stay home and practice social detachment.

Anthony S. Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the country's leading infectious disease specialist, said during a White House briefing that the gloomy projection was based on scientific models, and the predictions convinced Trump to extend the guidelines of social distance until the end of April.

"I think it is entirely conceivable that if we do not mitigate as far as we are trying to do that, you can reach that number," said Fauci.

Dr. Deborah L. Birx, chief coordinator of the White House coronavirus task force, said that, even with precautions and restrictions, the government model estimated "between 80,000 and 160,000, perhaps even potentially 200,000 people succumbing" to Covid- 19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

She added that without any precautionary measures, the same models projected that 1.6 to 2.2 million Americans could die from complications of the virus.

"Some of them predicted that half of the United States would be infected," she said.

Birx said it was a huge sacrifice to ask Americans to stay home for another month.

"They need to know that we really built this on the basis of scientific evidence and the potential to save hundreds of thousands of American lives," she said.

President Trump said on Sunday that the federal government's guidelines for social detachment would last until April 30, departing from his earlier comments that he hoped the country could return to work at Easter.

He clashed with public health experts across the country when he suggested that the guidelines – which urge people to stay home and not meet in groups of more than ten – could be relaxed by April 12. His announcement on Sunday indicated that he had backed down from that suggestion.

The number of coronavirus cases in the United States exceeded 140,000 on Sunday and at least 2,469 people died. In New York, the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States, the death toll has surpassed 1,000. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio warned that the city had only a week of medical supplies left.

While supplies are welcome by hospitals and healthcare professionals – some of whom have resorted to rationing protective equipment or using home supplies – they represent only a small part of what American hospitals need. The Department of Health and Human Services has estimated that the United States will require 3.5 billion masks in the event of a year-long pandemic.

The pandemic started a race between foreign governments, American governors and mayors, good Samaritans and opportunists to purchase protective equipment, ventilators and other products from China, the source of more than a third of medical supplies in the United States in 2019. The coronavirus epidemic in China it has decreased since February, the newly built industrial lines in the country start to produce masks, dresses and gloves.

The flights are the product of a public-private partnership – led by Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser to the White House – in which the government is looking for healthcare distributors like McKesson Corporation, Cardinal, Owens & Menor, Medline and Henry Schein.

With requests from state and city leaders for more medical supplies and questions raised about his interactions with some of them, Trump acknowledged on Sunday that he would delegate calls to governors – usually Democrats – with whom he had personal disagreements, doubling his in his claim that governors they need to treat it "fairly".

"I don't need to call because I'm probably no better," said Trump. – I'll call Mike Pence to call. I call the head of FEMA. I call the admiral to call.

When the first of 22 shipments of medical equipment made in China arrived in the United States on Sunday, other countries are complaining that China has provided defective protective equipment and inaccurate coronavirus test kits.

Chinese companies have taken action to supply masks, respirators, test kits and other protective equipment to combat the rapidly evolving global pandemic. With his own outbreak apparently under control, he sought to sell or donate equipment to improve his image on the global stage.

But some defective products are appearing in the supply chain, leading the governments of the Netherlands, Turkey and the Philippines to complain.

A commercial plane carrying Shanghai gloves, masks, dresses and other medical supplies landed at Kennedy International Airport in New York on Sunday, the first of 22 scheduled flights that, according to White House officials, will channel the necessary goods to the United States at the beginning April.

The plane carried 130,000 N95 masks, nearly 1.8 million surgical masks and gowns, 10 million gloves and more than 70,000 thermometers, said Lizzie Litzow, a spokeswoman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The quality of the equipment received, however, is unknown.

Defective protective equipment can be life-threatening for health professionals and defective tests can prevent sick people from receiving essential treatment.

Holland on Saturday remembered hundreds of thousands of facial masks from China, after it was revealed that they did not meet the standards set by Dutch health authorities. Spanish authorities said last week that hundreds of thousands of test kits delivered by a Chinese company had only a 30% accuracy rate. The Chinese Embassy later said the company it was not on their official list of certified suppliers.

In the Czech Republic, for example, a Local newspaper they cited medical workers who complained that up to 80% of the rapid coronavirus tests that the government ordered from China did not work properly.

In the Philippines, a Health Department official said that an initial initial batch of tests sent from China was defective, but later returned his comments after the Chinese Embassy denied that the test kits were part of a donation to the Philippines and said his donations had been evaluated. by the Tropical Medicine Research Institute.

Turkish health authorities also spoke publicly about your concern about China's test kits without giving details.

While countries around the world promote blockades in an attempt to contain the pandemic, some leaders scoff at containment efforts.

In Belarus, authoritarian President Aleksandr G. Lukashenko called coronavirus "Nothing but a psychosis" and has joked that one or two shots of vodka a day will poison the virus, advice rejected by medical experts.

Lukashenko even suggested that working on a tractor, having breakfast at a specific time or sitting in a sauna can help prevent infection.

While all of Europe and many other parts of the world have suspended professional football and other sports leagues, the Belarusian major league has continued to play, reflecting the lax response to the country's coronavirus.

President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil also argued that concerns about the pandemic are exaggerated.

He visited shopkeepers outside Brasília, the capital, on Sunday and argued that people must continue their jobs to survive, even while older people must stay at home.

"I advocate that you work, that everyone works," he said on Sunday, while visiting, Newspaper.

He repeated his argument that the damage done to the economy by efforts to contain its spread could be worse than the pandemic itself.

"Sometimes, many medicines become poisonous," he added.

Bolsonaro called the virus a simple cold and questioned the death toll in São Paulo, the country's largest city. Brazil recorded 4,256 confirmed cases of Covid-19 and 136 deaths as of Sunday.

Lukashenko also questioned the damage to coronavirus response efforts, saying he endorsed President Trump's comments that a cure for the pandemic cannot be worse than the disease itself.

"I really like his recent statements," said Lukashenko said of Trump on Friday, according to state media. “He said that unemployment can claim more lives than the coronavirus itself, unless they reopen business and get Americans back to work. Now you understand why I did not authorize the closing of companies. "

Since then, Trump has withdrawn from his suggestion that the United States should ease restrictions until Easter and has extended social distance guidelines until the end of April.

The Seattle area, home to the first known case of coronavirus in the United States and where the virus claimed 37 of its first 50 victims, is now seeing evidence that tough containment strategies, imposed in the early days of the outbreak, are beginning to to occur. pay – at least for now.

Deaths are not increasing as fast as in other states. Significant declines in traffic show that people stay at home. So far, hospitals have not been overloaded. And preliminary statistical models provided to public officials in Washington state suggest that the spread of the virus has slowed in the Seattle area in recent days.

While each infected person was transmitting the virus to an average of 2.7 others in early March, that number appears to have dropped, with a projection suggesting it was now at 1.4.



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