From: PDX (and now) London, UK
I did a quick catch-up and I see a lot of pessimism here. For instance, 100,000-200,000 deaths in the U.S.? How is that possible? Let me see what I can do to buttress Canoerebel's optimism.
I think you're just getting a wider range of information. It's not pessimism as much as reading the data out there and finding it discouraging. We'd all like to be optimists here, but it's hard right now if data doesn't support that. There are some encouraging signs, but some disheartening ones too.
What seems to work? Well, about 95% of the people here wear masks in public. Our government has seen fit to allocate two masks per person per week, so that's 100 million a week at $1.25 each (KF94 for adults and KF80 for kids, if anyone cares). That's a lot of masks, but what's keeping 600,000,000 masks a week from being available in the U.S.? Not top-quality 3M N95 ones, but regular ones the general public can wear?
After watching a NY doctor talk about how to protect myself and family (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxyH1rkuLaw) I've come to the conclusion that the most important things I can do are clean my hands like a fanatic, wipe surfaces touched by anyone who delivers, comes back inside, and every package arriving, and not touch my face.
He made the valid point that for most people a mask is very useful as a way of stopping you from touching your face. That's it. Unless you're in a situation with a person who is infected for a long duration, a mask isn't really needed. But it does help keep you from touching your face and if you're positive without knowing it, it protects others. So I also wear one all of the time now.
Comparing the US approach with that of South Korea is comparing apples and oranges.
As an outsider, there's been a strong vein of American exceptionalism in this thread. Things akin to "the US health service amazing and will easily cope", and other claims that aren't really supported by the international health rankings.
Granted, it's nearly twenty years old, but it does challenge these assumptions
Also, if anyone knows any more recent comprehensive comparison work on healthcare performance, please let me know.
I posted an article a number of pages back on the relative strengths of different health care types and systems across the world. It picked five of the top ones and ranked them in different categories. The US was one of them and it's research/innovation came out very high if I recall correctly. I think it was France on top though.
It's not always which works best in normal circumstances here, though. It's which can upscale, adapt, learn and grow based on other countries' experiences. South Korea has done that. Germany seems to be doing that well. Possibly some others.
I'm very encouraged, actually, by recent moves happening in the US to scale care, create more facilities and equipment. And testing.
< Message edited by obvert -- 3/31/2020 1:16:39 PM >
"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm." - Winston Churchill