Note: This thread is related to #Coronavirus #COVID19

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Andy Slavitt @ 🏡+ Your Authors @ASlavitt Ex-Obama health care head. Helper. Host podcast #IntheBubble. Listen: smarturl.it/inthebubble. Founded @usofcare & @townhallvntrs. Insta: @andyslavitt. May. 24, 2020 5 min read + Your Authors

COVID Update May 23: 2 months ago, with things heading off the rails & we launched #StayHome, experts told me that if we were successful at reducing the death toll, many wouldn’t believe COVID was much of a problem after all.

Fascinating look at where else I was right & wrong.1/

One popular activity is to go back to earlier days in the pandemic when we knew less & hunt for places where people were wrong and light them up for it.

I think it’s often a bad practice but I’ve decided to participate— by going back & looking at my own statements. 2/

I don’t make predictions. If anything my skill is getting people to return my call & sharing what I hear from experts. In the third week in March I laid out what it might look like ahead based on what I heard.

I made 12 calls @medium captured. 3/

 https://coronavirus.medium.com/beating-coronavirus-also-makes-prevention-behaviors-harder-to-sustain-776dfdd26e71 

First call: That the #StayHome effort would have mixed success.

So far: Much more consistent success than I would have thought.

R0 reduced below 1 for a time and people were united in taking spread seriously. For any disunity there is now, it’s better than I assumed then. 4/

Second call: That the death toll & scenes from hospitals would horrify Americans.

So far: Sadly not. Or if so, it didn’t last.

Maybe we got numb to the scrolling death toll. Maybe not enough reporters ventured into hospitals/nursing homes, but our sense of horror is uneven. 5/

Third call: That social distancing would work.

So far: Absolutely.

For the two weeks after bars & restaurants were shut down, we kept waiting for the curve to slow. It took 3-4 weeks but then we saw the evidence. If only we had started earlier. 6/

Fourth call: The fact that it worked would cause people to doubt why they were socially isolating.

So far: Sadly, this turns out to be true in portions of the population & as a political argument.

While this was something I was ready for, I worry about the impact of denial. 7/

Fifth call: There would be a summer lull relative to the Spring.

So far: Relative to Spring yes, but lull, hardly.

Dropping even to 1000 deaths/day would be progress from here. Nearly half the states are seeing growth. 8/

Sixth call: Political pressure will have a harmful effect.

So far: We’ll, maybe this wasn’t hard to call, but it feels like bad policy & bad politics.

Churches, bars, Vegas casinos. I worry that Trump is finding new hot spots instead of tough measured approaches.9/

Seventh call: There would become ways to be #OpenSafely.

So far: I didn’t anticipate the widespread stay at home orders, but believed with time, we could get businesses & communities ready to live w the virus.

There’s a whole array of resources in  http://www.open-safely.us .
10/

Eighth call: I anticipated that whatever lull we experience in the summer, we will see a worrisome second wave in the Fall. But I also predicted we would handle it better with fewer losses.

So far: We will see but it still feels right. We can of course impact this still! 11/

Ninth call: Why we’re doing #StayHome is not just for our health care system, but to give scientists time.

So far: We have seen some advances in therapies & vaccines.

Some say that since we avoided some hospital jams, we are in the clear. We still need more from science.12/

Tenth call: “The cure is worse than the disease” will become a donomimant argument.

So far: I fear this is the case & it’s become more & more so. Not with data. 13/

Eleventh call: By Spring 2021 we know whether we have a vaccine that works, testing, & understanding immunity.

So far: Jury is out. 14/

Twelfth call: The battle with the disease (and other pandemics) will continue in future stages.

So far: Jury still out.15/

Bonus idea: Apparently that day Trump started flirting with the potential of hydroxychloroquine which we know now has become one of his most popular & irresponsible refrains.

Even back then, it bothered me. And probably many others.16/

What else I got wrong:

Hospitalization rate: governors/modelers were showing me 20%. I assumed 10%. Looks more like 4%. This is a major assumption to be wrong on but good news.
After NY, more areas did a better job preventing outbreaks w lockdowns than I would have thought.17/

I have made other mistakes. I tweeted something once that I heard from a doctor that a hospital had run out of ventilators & were implementing guidelines on who would get an ICU bed. The hospital clarified that wasn’t the case. I had jumped the gun & regret it. I apologized. 18/

I have occasionally taken the bait in an argument which I usually regret. I upset a guest when we were on @MSNBC together having a discussion. I tracked him down and we talked & was so glad I did.19/

I’m most grateful for how many times I’ve answered a question with “I don’t know” or “I don’t know, but...” or pointed to better expert. But I’m sure there are other times where I smugly sounded more certain than I should have. And that’s embarrassing. 20/

There’s a great conversation here w @BetoORourke about the value of being able to say you don’t know something. 21/

 https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/in-the-bubble-with-andy-slavitt/id1504128553?i=1000474434498 

I’ve tried & sometimes failed to see things from others’ perspectives. We’ve lost a number of friends to CV & have had others deeply ill. But we haven’t been greatly financially impacted. Others are coming from a different place. They know no one impacted except financially.22/

I have focused on solutions: through @USofCare, @projectn95,  http://whileathome.org ,  http://www.covidexitstrategy.org , #StayHome campaign, the #opensafely effort, food, essential worker support & others in flight. But there were requests I didn’t get to respond to that trouble me.23/

Maybe I wasn’t objective or too easy on myself even here. That’s what Twitter comments are for. 24/

We have a ways to go. What we know is a fraction of what there is to know. What we believe is likely partly wrong. People have been through a lot & tolerance for each other is painfully thin. 25/

What is clearer today is that there is a path through this. And we should have more & more confidence we can do it without minimal loss of life. We will have to focus on all the displacement— social, financial, health— and help people build their lives back.

end/

*with minimal loss of life.

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