Flushing, NY – As the Coronavirus continues to encroach throughout the country, healthcare services will be stretched to the max to accommodate new cases of the illness.
The White House Coronavirus Task Force has announced the federal government has ordered thousands of ventilators be distributed to hospitals to handle incoming cases of COVID-19. There are currently 10,000 ventilators stockpiled in healthcare facilities around the country, with more being added. The task force is working with industry leaders to ensure an increase in ventilators, masks, gloves, eye protective wear and necessary garments going forward to successfully fight the war on COVID-19.
Dr. Deborah Birx, who serves as the coronavirus response coordinator for the White House Coronavirus Task Force, said areas have been prioritized for test kits by doing a county by county analyses of areas with more than 50 cases of COVID-19. Dr. Birx said 400,000 test kits were distributed with a 7% plus positivity rate. Birx said that platform will be expanded based on accessibility of kits.
The federal government urges people to stay home as much as possible, only venturing out for essentials. Many supermarkets are closing at 8:00pm and most corporate employees are working remotely from home.
Dr. Deborah Birx says the number of people diagnosed with COVID-19 will increase over the next couple of days due to more testing. Officials are warning not to expose yourself to an excess number of people who could be asymptomatic but still able to spread the virus.
Dr. Birx said, “Avoid touching hard surfaces outside the home that could have had the virus on them. The virus isn’t showing in fabric or cardboard in which products are shipped to stores, but hard surfaces can be sources of transmission. Don’t expose yourself to excess number of persons who could be asymptomatic and infected,” Birx stated.
Dr. Mary Claire Haver, an Ob/Gyn based in Houston, Texas, strongly advises, “This is not the time to get pregnant. If you were planning on starting a family, I would definitely put those plans on hold until we get past this crisis. I cannot guarantee what healthcare is going to be in 9 months when you would deliver.” Haver said not to be worried if you are already pregnant because, “There are many plans in place for safeguards, but the reality is the medical system over the next weeks and months is going to be stretched to the limit.”
President Trump has closed the U.S. – Canada border for non-essential crossings and says the closure will not affect trade. FEMA has been activated in every region. The president stated, “Airline travel is number one to win the war against the virus. Non-essential travel to Canada has been halted. The cruise and hotel industries have also been affected.” The task force hopes that in 30 days things will improve, even though “The level of contagion has never been quite like this.”
President Trump stated, “We inherited a very obsolete system. This was a system that was out of date or it was a system that was never meant to take care of the kind of quantity, the number of people that we’re talking about. Millions and millions of people.”