In the aftermath of the CDC announcement that coronavirus will affect Americans, the government made some important decisions regarding a potential outbreak.
President Trump announced that he will be appointing Mike Pence to manage the American response to the coronavirus and the possibility of more cases spreading into the U.S. This move comes after the administration was criticized in the previous days for giving the public unclear answers about how the epidemic would be handled domestically.
Trump stated during a news conference on Wednesday that Pence would be teamed with a number of healthcare professionals and a large team of hard workers. Trump and his team met in the White House briefing room, and discussed various actions related to the virus. This was done despite the fact that a large scale outbreak of coronavirus is still only considered a remote possibility. The team emphasized that the risk to most Americans was very low, but adequate preparation is still important.
While Trump downplayed the possibility of coronavirus causing major problems within the country, he still mentioned that every aspect of the society including schools and hospitals should prepare. He also said he is confident that all of the short term problems created by the spread of the virus should be over soon. The president and others have also mentioned that the flu is actually a more deadly disease, yet it has not received as much media attention in recent weeks. During flu season, thousands of Americans die each year, and influenza is especially devastating to those who are elderly, very young, or already dealing with other major health issues that cause weakened immunity.
During the conference, the president and others also mentioned the possibility of people panicking and making the situation worse. However, there is still a chance that the effects of coronavirus on America may be very minimal. Experts agree that there is no exact way to predict the tangible domestic effects of the virus yet.
There have already been travel restrictions in place for people entering and leaving China for several weeks, which is an effective way to manage the disease. Trump stated that no additional restrictions on travel are planned at the moment, but he is willing to put more similar measures in place if necessary. He emphasized that the health and safety of all Americans is the main priority.
Within China, the places most affected by coronavirus like the city of Wuhan remain under watch with various restrictions on people living there. Large sections of the country have been entirely quarantined to prevent further issues. The United States has made plans for similar quarantines if necessary, but it is doubtful that such restrictions would need to be imposed. Trump was quoted referring to such plans and saying “we don’t think we’re going to need it.”
Pence commented that he would be adding additional personnel to his team as needed to coordinate an appropriate response based on the threat level. He also said that governments at the state and local level would be given assistance from his team and access to other federal resources as needed.
The coronavirus pandemic
While most cases of the virus are in a few Asian countries, the number of overall cases has continued to increase in recent weeks, and it remains a global health problem.