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  • The U.S. has so far reported more than 2,350,000 confirmed cases, with at least 122,247 deaths.

    The U.S. has so far reported more than 2,350,000 confirmed cases, with at least 122,247 deaths. | Photo: EFE

Published 21 June 2020
Opinion

"It really does feel like the U.S. has given up," specialist at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, Siouxsie Wiles, told the Post.

Global public health experts are aghast at United States President Donald Trump’s comments that he will not call for more economic shutdowns even as COVID-19 case numbers continue to rise due to a reopening of the economy.

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Trump Not to Close the US Economy Even If COVID-19 Cases Rise

Ten states in the U.S. have reported this week their highest seven-day average since the pandemic started. Yet, Trump and other leaders are pushing citizens to return to work and their normal routines. 

"We won't be closing the country again. We won't have to do that,” Trump said Wednesday. 

Newspapers across Europe have recently published articles and editorials alarmed at the Trump administration's approach to the pandemic, The Washington Post reported Friday. 

Infectious disease specialists around the world are struggling to understand the logic of reopening the country as case numbers grow, the Post reported. 

"It really does feel like the U.S. has given up," specialist at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, Siouxsie Wiles, told the Post.

After spending four percent of its GDP on coronavirus relief, New Zealand announced in late April that it had eliminated the coronavirus. As of Sunday, the country has had only three confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the past three weeks.  

Other countries where case numbers have dropped significantly in recent weeks, including Canada, Denmark, and Germany, also introduced far-reaching economic relief packages early on in the crisis to enable people to stay at home and avoid overwhelming healthcare systems.    

Those spending plans contrast sharply with relief measures in the U.S., which included a one-time direct payment of US$1,200 to some citizens and US$600 per week on top of regular unemployment benefits.  

Unemployment benefits will in addition end in the coming days in several states for workers who didn't return to their jobs after their industries began reopening. Ohio's government urged companies to report employees who didn't return.

Wiles expressed horror at the pressure many U.S. citizens have felt for weeks to keep reporting to work

"I can't imagine what it must be like having to go to work knowing it"s unsafe," Wiles said. "It's hard to see how this ends. There are just going to be more and more people infected, and more and more deaths. It's heartbreaking."

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