Love him or hate him, but don’t listen to Donald Trump on coronavirus
Trump suggested recently that it would be okay if people infected with coronavirus ignored official advice to isolate and went to work. He also declared that he did not believe the WHO’s assessment of the global death rate from coronavirus of 3.4%.
US President Donald Trump has once again showcased his stunning lack of knowledge about basic things. This time the issue is the spiralling coronavirus crisis that has so far claimed 12 lives and infected 129 others in his country.
Trump's ignorance about the fast growing virus outbreak is complicating the work of public health officials who are struggling to contain the spread of the epidemic. Recently, he alarmed the scientific community by forcefully contradicting the World Health Organization, which earlier in the week estimated the global mortality rate for coronavirus at 3.4 percent.
Here’s what the US President said:
“Well, I think the 3.4 percent is really a false number. Now, and this is just my hunch, and — but based on a lot of conversations with a lot of people that do this,” Trump said on Fox News, going on to give the real figure as “way under 1 percent”.
Though, public health experts noted that the WHO’s estimate may change as more is learned about the spread of the virus; thousands of non-fatal cases likely have gone undetected. But while the death rate may dip below 3.4 percent, everything that’s known so far suggests it won’t fall to a level that’s not worrisome.
But Trump’s explanation on the disease could prove dangerous, as it contradicts health officials’ attempts to keep infected people away from others.
“Because a lot people will have this and it's very mild,” Trump went on, elaborating on why he thought the WHO had it wrong. “They'll get better very rapidly. They don't even see a doctor. They don't even call a doctor.”
“You never hear about those people. So you can't put them down in the category of the overall population in terms of this corona flu and — or virus. So you just can't do that," he said. "So if, you know, we have thousands or hundreds of thousands of people that get better, just by, you know, sitting around and even going to work — some of them go to work but they get better.”
Health officials say that even people with mild symptoms should stay home and “self-isolate” because they can spread the virus to others — some of whom will get deathly ill, or pass it on to yet more people, spreading the disease.
Following Trump’s suggestion that that it would be okay if people infected with coronavirus ignored official advice to isolate and went to work instead, he was brutally roasted by Twitterati. Take a look:
Here is the President of the United States telling the country it's okay to go to work with Coronavirus.— Matt Rogers ???? (@Politidope) March 5, 2020
I'm not kidding. pic.twitter.com/Tz4kKbyear
Not a doctor or a virologist or anything but DEFINITELY DO NOT GO TO WORK IF YOU HAVE CORONAVIRUS PLEASE AND THANK YOU. https://t.co/CpSxbvCHGs— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) March 5, 2020
It’s difficult to wrap your head around the fact that the president called into a TV show & made a series of statements during a pandemic directly contradicting public health advice. The mind boggles at how reckless & dangerous that is. People who follow his bad advice could die.— Brian Klaas (@brianklaas) March 5, 2020
Love him or hate him it doesn't matter please do not listen to him about this. If you get the #caronavirus please follow the CDC guidelines to minimize the spread. Just because you have few symptoms doesn't mean the person you pass it to will be the same, it could kill them. https://t.co/Y4sSP6Cx1o— Eric Garcia (@EricG1247) March 5, 2020
Am a doctor. Don’t go to work with Coronavirus. Don’t listen to Stupid. https://t.co/5tmnuyhYrE— Dr. Kathie Allen #DemCast (@kathieallenmd) March 5, 2020
Trump keeps going to work and infecting millions of people with stupid. https://t.co/gotGmmwTnz— Rick G. Rosner (@dumbassgenius) March 5, 2020
After facing immense criticism for his coronavirus remarks, Trump pushed back against media coverage of his Fox News interview, insisting that "I NEVER said people that are feeling sick should go to work."
I NEVER said people that are feeling sick should go to work. This is just more Fake News and disinformation put out by the Democrats, in particular MSDNC. Comcast covers the CoronaVirus situation horribly, only looking to do harm to the incredible & successful effort being made!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 5, 2020
Earlier this week, the House of Representatives approved an $8.3 billion emergency spending package to tackle the growing disaster. So far, 12 people have died in the US due to the virus. Of the 12 US deaths, 11 are in Washington state and one in California.
Asked if the coronavirus outbreak hurt the economy, Trump said on Thursday: “It certainly might have an impact. At the same time, I have to say people are now staying in the United States spending their money in the US, and I like that. It’s going to all work out. Everybody has to be calm.
“We have plans for every single possibility and I think that’s what we have to do. We hope it doesn’t last too long.”
The US President repeated his assertion that the travel restrictions he imposed on China early in the crisis had helped limit the outbreak in his country.