Threading the Needle Between Public and Economic Health

The nasty Chinese coronavirus is taking a massive toll, not only in America, but also around the world. While not as deadly as past flu epidemics, the final numbers are not yet known. Most of those who catch the virus have mild symptoms, but a small percentage are not so lucky. Those with severe disease may find themselves in an intensive-care unit, connected to a ventilator for several weeks, with no guarantee of returning home. Mitigation methods are in effect, expanding our vocabularies with now familiar terms of social distancing, quarantines, and stay-at-home orders. While mitigation reduces the spread, preventing hospitals from being overwhelmed with sick patients, the virus may persist longer in the community as a result, lengthening the duration of restrictions. But this comes at an economic cost, the elephant in the room that few want to talk about. Do we rip the band-aid off quickly, causing more short-term pain, or remove it slowly, causing only discomfort, but for a...(Read Full Article)
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