When will we go back to normal?


A: “There is no going back (to normal). The only way out is through.” This Atlantic article summarizes key steps as the United States enters the next phases of this pandemic.

1) Reopening – We are currently in lockdown (in most places) which was the last line of defense in slowing the spread of the virus. Lessening the lockdown depends on sustainable infrastructure for testing and health services, both of which have not been achieved to date. We are still far shy of what is needed to reopen.

2) Recalibration – Reopening will be very complicated. We should expect resurgence of infections and the need to maintain many aspects of social distancing well into the future. The remainder of 2020 and likely 2021 will require us to rethink how our society functions. Recalibration requires tools to track new clusters of infection, massive national investment in public health tracing, and new workflows.

3) Reinforcements – Countermeasures such as medications that decrease severity of illness, vaccinations, and serologic tests to measure immune response to Covid-19 will help, but they will take months-years to develop. These measures reinforce our response to Covid-19, but none will cure the virus or its effects on society.

4) Resilience – “We must have discipline to face the brutal facts with the unwavering faith we can prevail.” Our trek through the next months will require solidarity and individual sacrifice for the sake of all.

If you have the time, we highly encourage a full read.

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