The United States (US) is facing a Covid-19 crisis on a scale that has already exceeded other epicentres like China, Italy, and Spain — it now has 215,081 cases as of 9.55am Singapore time on 2 Apr.
This is a remarkable 22.98% of the world’s total confirmed cases, at 935,581.
On 25 Feb, there were 51 cases in the US.
By 25 Mar, 65,778 cases were confirmed.
2 days later, they took over the #1 spot in Covid-19 cases.
To understand why this is the case, this graph by Aatish Bhatia should give a clue: The growth in cases has been exponential, and show no sign of slowing or “flattening” yet.
Meanwhile, here’s a graph of a country that’s flattened the curve: South Korea
The curve doesn’t seem like it’ll be “flattened” in the US anytime soon. Currently there are 5,109 deaths.
To make matters worse, it seems the government of the US has resigned themselves to there being even more deaths.
Associated Press reports that the White House is projecting about 100,000 to 240,000 deaths from Covid-19 alone.
This death toll will become a reality unless Americans practice social distancing properly, said the coronavirus task force at the White House.
Meanwhile, social distancing guidelines will be extended to 30 Apr as the US seeks to flatten the curve. But this will take time and President Donald Trump has asked Americans to “brace” for more deaths.
If hospitals become overloaded, the eventual result will be more deaths. Unfortunately many will die regardless — it’s become a matter of reducing, rather than stopping deaths from Covid-19.
Singapore can very easily reach many more cases if we don’t do our part to practice social distancing as well.
We have just hit 1,000 cases last night (1 Apr).
Singaporeans must therefore be responsible and practice social distancing, or the situation will only get worse.
The US is an example of what not to do as a country: Downplaying the virus and allowing social gatherings until the situation became too dire to contain.
Singapore doesn’t have to be one of them if we all take social distancing seriously now.
Featured image adapted from The New York Times.
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