Columbia University has released a new report on Coronavirus in which researchers estimate that hundreds of thousands of people in the US died due to COVID-19 because the White House's response to the pandemic was an "abject failure," more specifically due to the actions of President Donald Trump.
The research report is titled as "130,000–210,000 Avoidable COVID-19 Deaths—and Counting—in the US." The report looks into the staggering and disproportionate nature of COVID-19 fatalities in the US—which as of now recorded over 8,337,000 cases and more than 222,000 deaths.
The report clearly states that if there was an adequate response, the US could have avoided tens of thousands of deaths and an uncountable amount of suffering. Dr. Irwin Redlener, who led the Columbia University study and the founding director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP) said that "We believe that this was a monumental, lethal screwup by an administration that didn't want to deal with reality."
The Worst Response
The researchers compared the COVID-19 response in the US with other countries, such as South Korea, Japan, Australia, Canada, Germany, and France. They found that the Trump administration's response to the Coronavirus pandemic rated unfavorably against them all.
The US has suffered a Coronavirus fatality rate more than 50 times that of Japan and double than of the neighboring country Canada. "By failing to implement the type of response strategies employed in the six comparison countries, our analysis shows that the United States may have incurred at least 130,000 avoidable deaths," said the report, which is co-authored by Sean Hansen, Jeffrey D. Sachs, and Nathaniel Hupert.
It also noted that if the US government had followed Canadian policies and protocols to fight the Coronavirus pandemic, there might have only been 85,192 deaths– making over 132,500 American deaths "avoidable." Similarly, if it followed Germany's response, the US may have had 38,457 COVID-19 deaths –leaving 179,260 avoidable deaths.
'He Has Blood on His Hands'
Redlener told The Daily Beast that the US has resources, economy, and the scientific expertise to do handle the pandemic in the "right way". The country is facing a lethal COVID-19 pandemic, and "we had very misguided leadership that chose to berate the purveyors of masks and social distancing. The president himself became a superspreader. He has blood on his hands."
When the country needed a leader, not a politician, Trump repeatedly opposed science, ignored the importance of wearing a mask, put all the blame on China, tried to convince people that the virus will "disappear," and after he tested positive, he said Coronavirus is a "blessing from God".
As per the public health experts millions of people in the US, excluding the currently affected individuals, have contracted the SARS-CoV-2 but haven't yet received an official diagnosis due to lack of required testing. They are also warning that the coming flu season could be a more crucial period as the COVID-19 cases continue to rise. They have been asking people to take their flu shot this year without any fail.
Recently, an infectious disease expert Michael Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, said that while the US lacks a leading voice to guide the public, "the next six to 12 weeks are going to be the darkest of the entire Coronavirus pandemic."