Raimondo’s Political Vanity Is Costing RI - 85% Increase in Coronavirus Cases in 2 Weeks - Landekic

Monday, November 23, 2020

 

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Governor Gina Raimondo PHOTO: GoLocal

The Governor’s latest pandemic press briefing showed the same consistency as the last few have. Once again offering a "too little, too late" strategy, to do anything meaningful about the crisis.

On Friday, 1,050 new infections were reported. Now, 48,001 Rhode Islanders have been infected and 1,294 have died. Thus, 2.1% of all infected in Rhode Island have passed although that death rate has decreased from over 3%.

New records for infections are being set almost every day. We are now averaging 925 new cases a day, an 85% increase compared with two weeks ago. Many days over 1,000 people become infected. Hospitals are becoming overwhelmed. Doctors and nurses are pleading for help. States with much lower infection rates than ours are frantically scrambling to implement close downs in desperate attempts to reduce illness and save lives. Rhode Island has the worst infection rates of any state on the east coast. In what universe does it make sense, in the face of a wildly exploding uncontrolled pandemic, to wait nearly two weeks before implementing even the paltry measures announced? Yet Governor Raimondo chooses to let the pandemic continue to rage for another 11 days before doing anything about it. Rhode Island is the center of pestilence and embarrassment in New England.

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The growth of infections is now exponential. The rate at which people are becoming infected is getting faster every day. 1,000 infected people will infect more than 500 people will, and 1,500 infected people will infect more than 1,000 people will, so each week the numbers grow faster than the week before. It will only get even worse in the coming months. The line of new infections is going straight up, with no end in sight. We are headed for a horrendous nightmare most people can’t imagine, unless drastic action is taken right now.

In the 11 days of delay before starting the Governor’s meager actions, another 10,000 Rhode Islanders will become infected. Of these, thousands may end up with long term if not permanent debilitations, such as heart damage, brain damage, or chronic fatigue. Several hundred may ultimately die. How many bodies will it take before our government finally does what is needed?

As much as we would like to pretend it isn’t, COVID is a disease you get from other people. To break the cycle of infection, people have to stop gathering in enclosed places. This is why close downs work: it keeps people apart. It’s worked in many states and countries. It’s the only thing that works, and the only action that can contain the uncontrolled catastrophe in Rhode Island.

 

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Source: Covid ActNow




The graphic by covidactnow.org, experts from Georgetown University, Stamford University, and the Harvard Global Health Institute, now forecasts 1.7 million infections in Rhode Island over the next year. In a state with a population of just over a million. Let that sink in for a minute. Unless some radical changes are made, it’s predicted that everyone in Rhode Island will become infected with the coronavirus. 

The vaccines will not come in time to save us. The reality is that vaccines will not be available to most people until sometime next spring or later. For the first few months supplies will be limited, and only a few people will be eligible for them. It will then take time to inoculate everyone – one million Rhode Islanders can’t all be vaccinated on the same day. At the rate contagion is spreading, it looks like we will all become infected before there is a chance to get vaccinated.

Delaying the start of even tiny measures, and then applying them for only two weeks, are acts of denial and lack understanding for the seriousness of the disaster. Allowing restaurant indoor dining at 33% of capacity instead of 66%? You can’t tweak your way out of this catastrophe. The pandemic is not a venture capital spreadsheet exercise to twiddle with. With people dying every day and thousands becoming ill, it takes strong leadership and an all-out no-holds-barred effort to stop it.

If we want to live, the only way to stop infection from spreading is with a proper close down. Now. That means everything, and probably for a couple of months and not a delusional two weeks. One without silliness like pretending restaurants or places of worship can stay open at some magical percent of capacity, or making exceptions for other places people gather. If you want to survive, this is the only way out of this mess. The coronavirus doesn’t give a pass to anyone or for anything. Making excuses will only get you infected, or worse.

Along with a complete close down we have to help those who will be out of work. The $150 million over-budgeted but not used for testing would be a good start.

The Governor has ignored advice from public health experts like Dr. Michael Fine, former Rhode Island Medical Director, and Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health. These are people whose only interest is to protect our health and lives. She has had many chances to do what is necessary to save our lives and has not done so. Our lives depend on having a leader willing and able to make hard, unpopular decisions to save us. If we want to get through this, we need different leadership.

Governor Raimondo showed exactly this kind of leadership when she restructured Rhode Island’s state pension plan. This was a difficult, painful, disliked, but absolutely necessary reform. Without it, Rhode Island was headed for economic ruin. As much as many people didn’t like it, Governor Raimondo saw what needed to be done and had the courage to do it. We need the same kind of leadership now with the pandemic, but for whatever reasons, Governor Raimondo hasn’t been able to rise to this challenge. We are paying for this with our lives, and the lives of our loved ones.

Call or email your Rhode Island state representative and demand that they abide by their oath of office and do whatever it takes to save our lives and follow the guidance of public health experts. If necessary, this includes passing legislation to implement a proper close down without the Governor, or asking for the Governor’s resignation, or impeachment proceedings to remove her from office. Our representatives were not elected to play games. They are supposed to work for us. It’s long past time they grow spines and actually do their jobs.

We cannot continue to sacrifice our health and lives to vanity, arrogance, and politics. There is no more time to wait or waste. Too many people have needlessly become sick or died. This has to stop, and it’s within our power to do it. The next statistic in the grim daily counts of the infected and dead could be someone you love. It could be you. 

Nick Landekic a retired scientist and biotechnology executive with over 35 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry.  

The Governor’s latest pandemic press briefing showed the same consistency as the last few have. Once again offering a "too little, too late" strategy, to do anything meaningful about the crisis.

On Friday, 1,050 new infections were reported. Now, 48,001 Rhode Islanders have been infected and 1,294 have died. Thus, 2.1% of all infected in Rhode Island have passed although that death rate has decreased from over 3%.

New records for infections are being set almost every day. We are now averaging 925 new cases a day, an 85% increase compared with two weeks ago.

 
 

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