We Must Grow Our Way Out of the COVID-19 Threat [OPINION]
According to medical experts, we are a long way from a vaccine solution to COVID-19. The only answer is to grow our health care resources to meet the threat.
The people of Massachusetts and most other states are living a life of government-ordered isolation. I have no major quarrel with the way the executive branch has ordered the isolation given the information available at each time the decisions were made.
I believe the elected government has been acting in the best interest of the citizens that voted them in to make these decisions. I also recognize that sometimes, some information turns out to be wrong, and therefore the decision based on that information has the potential of being wrong.
If you ever did a project with your father, you are familiar with the instructive saying, "Measure twice, cut once." That works well when time is on your side. In a crisis, you are sometimes lucky to get a measurement at all, never mind multiple sources of information on which to base your cut.
The reason the elected officials, acting on the advice of medical experts, ordered the shutdown of most of our economy and social life was to slow the spread of COVID-19. The theory was that a rapid spread would overwhelm the healthcare system and lead to unnecessary deaths because of a shortage of resources. Limiting social contact would slow the spread and allow for the healthcare system to catch up to the anticipated demand. That is a logical plan in a battlefield setting that can't wait for two measurements.
The only answer is to grow our healthcare resources and return to the life we all enjoyed for decades just a few months ago. More hospital beds, medicines, technology, and trained health care workers are the answers to this pandemic. Sheltering in place is a short-term answer, not a lifestyle.
Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.