An ongoing widespread pandemic of coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) was first confirmed to have spread to the U.S. in January 2020. The cases have been confirmed in all 50 U.S. states encompassing all inhabited U.S. territories – except American Samoa – and the District of Columbia. The United States has the most confirmed active cases in the world as of April 05, 2020 and ranks second in number of death from the virus.
On January 20, 2020, the first known case – a 35-year old man who had just returned from the region of China ‘Wuhan’ five day earlier – of Coronavirus in the U.S. was confirmed. On January 29, the White House Coronavirus Task Force was devised. Two days later, the flights between the U.S. and China were suspended by most major airlines. In addition, a public health emergency was declared by the Trump administration and publicized limitations on the travelers arriving from China. On 26 of February, in northern California, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the first case in the United States in a person with ‘no known exposure to the virus through close contact or travel with a known infected one’.
The U.S. got off to a slow start in Coronavirus testing. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) processes, until the end of February, prohibited laboratories other than the CDC from releasing test results to patients, even though they followed globally acknowledged test protocols. The CDC, to cope with the critical situation, devised and distributed test kits of its own, but a number of them were found to have a manufacturing error which turned the kit illegal to use until the protocol was altered. Until the end of February, the use of any test kits other than the CDC’s were not permitted by the FDA. On 29 of February, public health hospitals, agencies and private companies were granted the permission to develop tests and perform testing; the private companies were shipping thousands of tests by mid-March. Initially, there were very restrictive guidelines pronounced by FDA on who was permitted to be tested, but on 5th March, it allowed anybody holding a doctor’s order could be tested. As of March 25, eventually, at least 418,000 test had been conducted, and this number had reached 945,000 by March 30.
The CDC warned that worldwide spread of the ongoing disease might force a considerable number of people to seek hospitalization and other services of healthcare nature which may cause an overload on healthcare systems. Since 19 of March, the Department of State has prescribed its inhabitants to evade international travel. On March 16, any gatherings comprising more than 10 people were strictly restricted by the White House. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in mid-March 2020, voiced the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to devise a plan to construct new facilities encompassing leased hotels and other buildings, and further asked them to convert them for use as intensive care units and hospitals. State and local responses to the outburst have entailed prohibitions and cancellations of trade shows, conventions, music festivals, large-scale gatherings and suspension of leagues and sporting events, and closure of schools and educational institutions.
The Reaction of White House
By April 05, 2020, more than any other country, the United States has more confirmed cases of coronavirus with more than 323,516 positive cases whereas 9,171 individuals have been expired. Telling reporters: “you don’t know what the numbers are in China.” Mr. Trump also cast doubt on the figures coming out of Beijing. But later on, he uncovered in his tweet that he had had a ‘very good conversation’ with the president of China – Xi Jinping.
“China has been through much & has developed a strong understanding of the Virus. We are working closely together. Much respect!” Mr. Trump said. He, at Thursday’s briefing, said: “They (the American people) have to go back to work, our country has to go back, our country is based on that and I think it’s going to happen pretty quickly”. “A lot of people misinterpret when I say go back – they’re going to be practising as much as you can social distancing, and washing your hands and not shaking hands and all of the things we talked about.” President Trump added later on.
Donald Trump has said that by the time the coronavirus outbreak peaks, the U.S. will be in “a very good shape” in terms of the number of ventilators accessible. According to him, 10 U.S. companies were now constructing the medical devices and some might be exported. On March 30, speaking at Monday’s Coronavirus Task Force briefing at the White House, President Donald Trump said, “We have now 10 companies at least making the ventilators, and we say go ahead because, honestly, other countries – they’ll never be able to do it.”
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