|See Gov data — SPIKE!|
Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-diseases expert, warned lawmakers Tuesday that there may be as many as 100,000 new cases per day, 2.5 times the present record rate of infections, if the United States continues on its current trajectory. When asked by the Senate's health committee what the overall American death toll might be, Fauci said: “I can't make an accurate prediction, but it is going to be very disturbing.”
As infections climb precipitously across the South and West, hospitalizations are rising in seven states — Texas, Arizona, Nevada, South Carolina, Montana, Georgia and California. Average hospitalizations in these states are up at least 25 percent from last week, according to data tracked by The Washington Post.
Because of the surge, states are closing back down and workers are getting laid off for a second time, and Congress appears less inclined to provide additional aid. California, Florida, Arizona and Texas have implemented new policies that partly restrict restaurant or bar service. Nine other states have postponed or slowed their reopening plans. You can see where states are lifting restrictions (or shutting down again) on our reopening tracker.
The European Union confirmed Americans will not be allowed to travel there when it reopens Wednesday. The United States is leading the world in both officially confirmed infections and fatalities.
Despite what President Trump and some Republican leaders are saying, more coronavirus tests are coming back positive, and there’s been an increase in the number of states seeing positive test rates above 10 percent. The World Health Organizations suggests at least 14 straight days with those rates below 5 percent before relaxing containment measures.
Economists say a nationwide mask mandate could save 5 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product. The Goldman Sachs analysts are not health experts, and their research focused on the effects of federal policy on the GDP, but the findings are in line with published studies on the efficacy of masks.
As such evidence mounts that masks alone would have a significant impact on the spread of the virus, Trump's Republican allies are practically begging him to encourage wearing them. There's been a massive uptick in recent days of well-known Republicans pleading the case for masks, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Fox News host Sean Hannity and “Fox and Friends” host Steve Doocy. New data from the Pew Research Center suggests Trump’s handling of the pandemic is pushing his support lower.
Irvine Community News and Views:
Posted by Phyllis Agran, M.D. | June 26, 2020
…Let’s take a closer look at what’s going on locally. Our own County Supervisor and former Irvine Mayor, Don Wagner, has shown himself to be a menace to public health by first urging in May that the County be “opened up” without meeting State public health metrics. Soon after that, Wagner began questioning the usefulness of masks, bullying the County’s chief Public Health Officer Nichole Quick, MD over the masking matter. What was Dr. Quick’s transgression? Quite simply, she was doing her job. To protect workers and customers alike, Dr. Quick issued an order that required the use of facemasks in public as our small businesses reopened. Wagner challenged the science behind masking, forced the rescission of Dr. Quick’s order and, ultimately, he forced her resignation. Fortunately, Governor Gavin Newsom ended this dangerous nonsense in Orange County by imposing a State mandate of facemask use in public, effective June 18, 2020….