It is best to keep the record straight when analyzing the reasons why Covid-19 has blasted such a hole in the United States Health Care system and its economy.
December 31, the China office of the World Health Organization heard the first reports of an unknown virus in the city of Wuhan that had caused a number of pneumonia cases.
January 7: Chinese officials announced it has identified a new virus.
January 11: China announce the first death from the virus
January 13: The first case outside of China.
January 17: Second death in Wuhan. Cases confirmed in U.S., France, Austria over the following days
January 22: The death toll in China jumped to 17 with more than 550 infections
January 22. CNBC Reporter Joe Kernen asked, “Are there worries about a pandemic at this point?”
Trump replied, “No. Not at all. And—we’re—we have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s—going to be just fine.”
[ON this date former director of the CDC wrote an op-ed for the health care publication Stat warning the virus would continue spreading: “We need to learn – and fast – about how it spreads.”]
January 23: The City of Wuhan placed under quarantine.
January 24: Trump: “It will all work out well.”
January 27: New cases confirmed in U.S.
January 28: Trump retweeted a One America News Headline: “Johnson & Johnson to create coronavirus vaccine.”
[On this date two former Trump administration officials wrote in the Wall Street Journal: “If public-health authorities don’t interrupt the spread soon, the virus could infect many thousands more around the globe, disrupt air travel, overwhelm health care systems, and worst of all, claim more lives. The good news: There’s still an opening to prevent a grim outcome . . But authorities can’t act quickly without a test that can diagnose the condition rapidly.”]
January 30: WHO declared coronavirus a global emergency as death toll in China jumped to 170 with 7,711 cases.
January 30: Trump states: “We have it very well under control. We have very little problem in this country at this moment – five. And those people are all recuperating successfully.”
January 31: Trump barred most foreigners who had recently visited China. It didn’t apply to Americans who had been traveling to China
February 2: First death outside of China in Philippines
February 2: Asked by Hannity if he was concerned Trump replied: “Well, we pretty much shut it down coming in from China. We have a tremendous relationship with China, which is a very positive thing. Getting along with China, getting along with Russia, getting along with these countries.”
February 5: American citizens from Wuhan flown to U.S.
February 10: China reports 97 new deaths, total deaths 908
February 10: Trump says: “Looks like by April, you know, in theory, when it gets a little warmer, it miraculously goes away.”
February 19: Trump says: “I think the numbers are going to get progressively better as we go along.”
February 21: Italy region of Lombardy reported the first local transmission of virus with three new cases. Total in Italy 6
February 22: South Korea sees spike of 228 new cases. Number of new cases in China falls significantly. Italy reports it first two deaths.
February 23: Italy confirms third death.
February 23: Trump said the situation was “very much under control. We had 12, at one point. And now they’ve gotten very much better. Many of them are fully recovered.”
[On February 23 the World Health Organization announced the virus was in 30 countries with 56,811 confirmed cases.]
February 25: Trump said: “I think that’s a problem that is going to go away. They have studied it. They know very much. In fact, we’re very close to a vaccine.”
February 26: Trump said: “We’re going down, not up. We’re going very substantially down, not up.” He also said: “The [15 cases in the U.S. within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero.”
February 27: Trump said: “It’s going to disappear. One day – it’s like a miracle – it will disappear.”
February 29: First U.S. death from coronavirus
February 29: Trump said a vaccine would be available “very quickly” and “very rapidly.” He also said his administration’s actions as “the most aggressive taken by any country.”
[At the end of February there were 85,403 confirmed cases in 55 countries.]
March 2: Trump said, “We’re talking about a much smaller range” of deaths than from the flu. He also said: “A lot of things are happening. A lot of very exciting things are happening and they’re happening very rapidly.”
March 4: Trump told Hannity: “It’s very mild.” He also said: “If 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.”
March 5: Trump said: “I never said people that are feeling sick should go to work.”
March 6: Trump while touring the C.D.C. said: “ I think we’re doing a really good job in this country at keeping it down . . . a tremendous job at keeping it down.” He also said “Anybody right now, and yesterday, anybody that needs a test gets a test. They’re there. And the tests are beautiful. . . . The tests are all perfect like the letter was perfect. The transcription was perfect.” [Same day: Alex Aar secretary of health and human services told ABC “there is no testing kit shortage, nor has there ever been,]
March 7: The coronavirus had killed nearly 3,500 people and infected another 102,000 people across 90 countries.
March 7: Trump said: “I’m not concerned at all.”
March 10: Both Iran and Italy recorded their highest death tolls in a singe day. 54 people in Iran; 168 fatalities in Italy.
March 10: Trump said: “It will go away. Just stay calm It will go away.”
March 11: [WHO officially declared that the Covid-19 outbreak a pandemic]
March 12: Global death toll surpasses 4,600 with infections exceeding 126, 000
March 17: Trump: “I’ve always known this is a real — this is a pandemic. I thought it was a pandemic long before it was called a pandemic. All you have to do is look at other countries.”
March 20: Deaths surge past 10,000
March 21: Italy reports 793 new fatalities bringing total deaths to 4.825 amid 53,538 cases