The President has written to governors in every local region to put forward guidelines to help each county access the risk of Coronavirus for them. The President is keen to enable low risk regions of the country to operate with less strict restrictions, as soon as possible.
“This is what we envision: Our expanded testing capabilities will quickly enable us to publish criteria, developed in close coordination with the Nation’s public health officials and scientists to help classify counties with respect to continued risks posed by the virus,” Trump wrote.
Each county would be given a federal category: “high risk”, “medium risk” or “low risk”. The categories would be given after all the data for these regions was accessed.
“I want to thank each of you, along with your frontline responders and essential workers, for stepping up to help America confront this unprecedented global pandemic,” Trump wrote.
President Trump has said that he’d like to see the economy restarted by Easter. Saying, “would love to have the country opened up and just raring to go by Easter.”
The President has also said that the “cure cannot be worse” than the disease. Indicating that steps to halt the Coronavirus have to be weighed against the harm it will do to the American economy.
However, top officials have tempered the President’s positive outlook warning that this crisis could continue for many weeks to come. The task force has said that decisions around lifting restrictions will be taken at a later date by looking at all the fresh data available.
In 30 days the global economy has been brought to the brink of depression. In February the DOW was soaring at record highs and the U.S. economy was in the midst of its greatest economic expansion in history.
A global recession for 2020 was all but unthinkable.
Now the U.S. government is set to inject $1trillion into the U.S. economy to stop mass lay offs, and the U.K. government has agreed to pay 80% of the nation’s wages. As economies are grinding to a halt across the globe the affects of Covid-19 could be hear for a long time.
As the pandemic continues experts are now thinking how it will shape the world once the health emergency has ended. Many think the world will see major shifts in global supply chains and how global trade is conducted.
Many have been warning the West about the threat of a global pandemic. In 2013 the World Bank said, “A severe pandemic would resemble a global war in its sudden, profound, and widespread impact”
70 million people across America’s mostly densely populated states are preparing for lock down. New York and Illinois are expected to follow California, in restricting residents to their homes.
Hospitals are already facing the strain of Covid-19, and health officials are desperately trying to avoid a repeat of what has happened in Italy and Spain.
Northern Italy is still in the grips of an out of control spread of Coronavirus. With the health care system unable to cope with the shear numbers of sick and dying.
President Trump addressed the nation saying:
“Every American has a role to play in defending our nation from this invisible, horrible enemy.
“It really is an invisible enemy – and we will be successful, hopefully very much sooner than people would think.
“So we say stay at home and save lives. It is a time of shared national sacrifice but it’s also a time to treasure our loved ones and to take stock of what is most important; our faith, our families, our neighbours and our great country.
“I want to thank all of the incredible people, the citizens of our country.”
The U.S. government are reportedly considering ordering tech companies to hand over data to monitor if people are complying with social distancing guidelines during the Coronavirus pandemic.
According the NBC
Federal health officials say they could use anonymous, aggregated user data collected by the tech companies to map the spread of the virus — a practice known as “syndromic surveillance” — and prevent further infections. They could also use the data to see whether people were practicing “social distancing.”
Some sources stressed that the effort would be anonymized and that government would not have access to specific individuals’ locations. They noted that users would be required to opt-in to the effort.
The federal effort, first reported by The Washington Post, will force the tech giants to weigh their commitments to user privacy against their desire to help combat a disease that has cost thousands of human lives and upended the global economy.
Google confirmed that it is looking at how anonymous aggregated user data could be used in the fight against Covid-19. Saying they are, “exploring ways that aggregated anonymized location information could help in the fight against COVID-19. One example could be helping health authorities determine the impact of social distancing, similar to the way we show popular restaurant times and traffic patterns in Google Maps.”
The most prodigious of the film festivals- Cannes- is to be postponed this year. Organisers have said that until the Coronavirus is under control in France will the make a decision.
“Several hypotheses are being studied to preserve the festival, the main one of which would be a simple postponement,” the festival said in a statement. “As soon as the development of the French and international health situation will allow us to assess the real possibility, we will make our decision known.”
Already South by Southwest and the Tribeca Film Festivals have been cancelled. But the industry hopes that Cannes will survive as it is closer to summer.
The President has announced a thirty day travel ban between the US and Europe. The ban will affect the Schengen area. This covers the countries in Europe which allow free movement of people within the EU, and includes Italy, France and Germany. Italy has particularly struggled to contain the virus, and has today ordered all shops apart from pharmacies and supermarkets to remain closed. The UK and Ireland will not be included in the travel ban.
EU leaders reacted angrily to the ban. However, the President said that the ban could be shortened or lengthened depending on how the outbreaks continues.
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) has tested positive for Coronavirus. Politico reported, “Cantwell will close her office in D.C. this week and her staff will work remotely. The Washington State Democrat is asking that additional staffers be tested.”
Monday saw global markets plummet and oil prices fall heavily, as fears around Coronavirus fuel the prospect of a global recession.
Analysts are now warning that if the economy is severely affected by the global outbreak of Corvid-19 it could harm Trump’s re-election bid.
“President Trump’s re-election likely hinges on the economy — a medical and/or economic shock from COVID-19 are arguably the biggest threats to his re-election,” Raymond James analysts said in a note on Sunday, referring to the virus’s official name.
“To preserve the economy and prevent a further market sell-off, it is in the best interest of President Trump to aggressively push for a large-scale fiscal response,” they wrote.
“If we go into recession, history speaks for itself. No sitting president has ever been re-elected in a recession,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist for Spartan Capital Securities.
The President is expected to announce new measures to help ease the economic affects of Coronavirus. These include payroll tax cuts for those directly affected by the virus.
“The president has tasked this economic team and is working already with leaders in the Congress to make sure that [no one] feels that they are at risk of losing their job or their paycheck if they contract the coronavirus,” Pence said. Pence has been placed at the head of the committee to tackle coronavirus.
Coronavirus has hit Iran hard. With members of the Iranian government contracting the illness. It has now been confirmed that Mohammad Mirmohammadi, 71, who was an Expediency Council member and adviser to Khamenei has died. COVID-19 has already infected Iran’s Vice President and Deputy Health Minister.
Iran has rejected help from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. The US are concerned that Iran is covering up details about the spread of the virus.
Iran’s mortality rate of the virus has been 5.5%, compared with 2% in China. The virus has killed at least 66 people in Iran, the highest death toll outside of China. The majority of 1,150 cases throughout the Middle East are linked back to the country.
Iran has closed schools, but has allowed religious sites to remain open. Footage from Iran last week showed Iranians licking shrines in defiance to the virus.
The first American death from Coronavirus was announced this week. The lady in her fifties was reported to be a medically high risk individual.
The President addressed a news conference. Where he updated the media on the situation saying: there are still four people very ill, but 15 are on the way to recovery or have recovered. However the President warned more cases are expected.
The President announced greater travel restrictions to south east Asia, Iran and Italy. He also did not rule out tighter border controls along the Mexican border.
Coronavirus continues to spread globally with Italy and Iran being particularly hard hit outside of China. Little is still known about the virus. But it appears that for 3 out of every 4 cases the patient will have mild to moderate flu like symptoms. However there are those people for whom the virus requires hospital treatment. Those at greatest risk of death are the elderly, the very young, and those with pre-existing medical conditions.