Summary of Stop Covid or Save the Economy? We Can Do Both

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Stop Covid or Save the Economy? We Can Do Both summary
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COVID-19 has stopped the world in its tracks. Its contagion impelled governments to adopt Draconian measures that slowed the pandemic but shut down whole sectors of economies. Some have cast this dilemma as a choice that government must make between safeguarding lives and rescuing the economy. Journalist David Rotman, however, argues powerfully in this incisive essay that this a false choice: A workable strategy for widespread testing would help open the US economy while keeping a lid on the spread of COVID-19.

About the Author

David Rotman is a business and science journalist and an editor at large of MIT Technology Review.

 

Summary

Interventions to conquer COVID-19 are saving lives but taking a toll on the economy.

At the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in early 2020, scientific models projected some 2.2 million US deaths from COVID-19 if it were left unchecked. Closing businesses was a necessary response to control the advance of the disease and prevent enormous loss of life. 

But in just the first two weeks of the shutdown, almost 10 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits. Estimates suggest a decline in US GDP of between 30% to 50% by the middle of 2020, and one economist predicted a cost of $10,000 per...


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