Have we reached the eye of the COVID-19 storm?

By Physician Sense
Published April 13, 2020

Key Takeaways

Easter Sunday, and Christian churches the world over sat empty. Well, mostly empty. Pope Francis delivered a televised Easter Sunday mass behind closed Vatican doors. He called for a “contagion of hope.” Regardless of creed, or lack thereof, perhaps that’s what all healthcare providers could use right now. If the Easter Sunday news had a theme, it was perhaps best summed up by Dr. Anthony Fauci: “cautious optimism.”

What you missed from the weekend

Here are some of the stories you might have missed this weekend while you were hopefully resting and recovering:

Looking ahead

We don’t have a COVID crystal ball here at PhysicianSense, but reviewing last week’s news, here’s what we’re keeping an eye on this week.

The peak

There’s a bright spot in the data from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME). This is the data that the White House appears to be using. As of writing this, the data show that we are 1 day past peak hospital demand and 2 days past the projected peak of deaths per day. If the data are accurate, the situation in American hospitals and physician practices may improve this week. However, it looks like the total death curve will not flatten until June, the projections suggest.

The federal government also seems to see some silver lining. On Sunday morning, White House health adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci expressed “cautious optimism” on CNN’s State of the Union that the spread of the virus was slowing and we could see “gradual reopening” of businesses next month. Fauci added that the U.S. might see relaxation of social distancing in areas that weren’t hard hit as soon as next month, but it would have to be gradual and managed by local officials. 

The Takeaway: “Cautious optimism” that a slowed spread of the virus might mean less strain on HCPs and U.S. hospital resources this week.

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