Is the United States Prepared for the Pandemic?

Ways in which more and more people are affected by the coronavirus

This illustration depicts the huge pandemic that has spread around the world. Coronavirus has effected people in many different ways.

Photo: Snowden Farnsworth

This illustration depicts the huge pandemic that has spread around the world. Coronavirus has effected people in many different ways.

The coronavirus, COVID-19, is hitting the United States hard, and on Friday March 27, the U.S. grew in the number of coronavirus cases. It became the number one country in the world with the most reported cases. As of April 1, there is reporting of 208,029 cases in the United States alone, which has gone up significantly from Friday when there were about 82,000 reported cases. The big question is how prepared is the United States for the increasing number of people trying to fight against the disease?

We are slowly losing supplies for hospitals, like the essentials: masks and even beds. According to ProPublica, as of 2018, Memphis hospitals had a total of 5,050 hospital beds for use and about 60 percent were occupied, which means that they were about 2,050 beds that were unused by patients. While this may seem like a lot of vacant rooms, hospitals around the world are proving that this is not enough for the increasing amount of cases. Today, there are hospitals around the world that are overflowing with patients, and most have reached maximum capacity. Many hospitals do not have masks and gloves for staff, and without these essentials to protect the doctors and nurses, they may get the virus themselves. Without doctors, who will be able to help cure the virus?

Kylie Jenner donated one million dollars to help first responders be more prepared to fight against the pandemic. She bought masks and other protective gear with the hope that doctors could be better prepared for more patients. This is not all that hospitals are in need of because patients are needing ventilators as well. A symptom of the virus is having trouble breathing, and many patients are in need of ventilators, but hospitals only have so many.

I am not sure how the United States will respond to the situations going forward. Many people are not only worried about getting the virus, but they are also cautious about losing their jobs. Last week, the Senate passed a two trillion dollar response bill, which is supposed to help the United States economy. Hopefully, it will help businesses and individuals with any financial problems. According to the Washington Post, 3.3 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits as many stores are closing because of the coronavirus. Without these jobs, people are having difficulty paying bills and providing food for their families.

In short, I do not think the United States is prepared for what it may be facing, but I am hopeful that the United States will continue to find ways to protect the doctors putting in all their hard work for the betterment of thousands of citizens. When more problems come up, I hope the government will see to making sure every person living in the United States feels safe and protected.