The United States should take immediate action to ensure that every person who requests access to COVID-19 testing can receive it, Amnesty International USA said on Wednesday in a letter addressed to United States President, Donald J. Trump. The human rights organization called on the President to ensure that adequate and quality personal protective equipment (PPE), information, training, and psychosocial support are available to support nurses, doctors, and other response staff on the front lines of the coronavirus in these critical days and weeks.
“Until there is widespread testing available in every state, we will not fully know the full scale of this pandemic in the United States and not be able to take the necessary steps needed to limit and stop its spread” said Margaret Huang, the executive director of Amnesty International USA. “Every single person in this country should have access to care and safety. To stop the spread of COVID-19, our leaders must take immediate action now to ensure we have the supplies we need to keep us all safe”.
Amnesty International USA called on Mr. trump to use every option available, including further invoking the Defense Production Act (DPA) and using the Strategic National Stockpile, to increase the production of personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other vital healthcare equipment; ensure that any goods and services necessary for prevention of exposure are widely available and affordable for all; and drastically increase testing for COVID-19 in every state.
More than 900 people died from the novel coronavirus in the United States on Tuesday alone, according to the latest tally. Of that number, about 500 people died in New York State alone. In New York City, about a thousand people have already died from the deadly bug overall.
One virus tracker which collates information from government agencies said 912 people died from the coronavirus on Tuesday. That number represents the highest death toll in a single day in the United States from COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
Johns Hopkins University tally showed that at least 865 people died from the coronavirus on Tuesday alone.
Overall, more than 4000 people have now died in the United States from the coronavirus overall, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
That number has eclipsed the total deaths from the 9/11 terror attacks in New York where the World Trade Center towers collapsed more than 18 years ago.
“More than 900 people have died from COVID-19 in Manhattan alone, and the city was opening temporary hospitals in a convention center, a Navy ship and Central Park. Refrigeration trucks were serving as temporary morgues,” USA Today reported on Wednesday.
At a press briefing at the White House on Tuesday, President Donald Trump said the next two weeks in the U.S. will be “very painful”. The President said he wants “every American to be prepared for the days that lie ahead”.
Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force coordinator, said at the briefing estimates showed between 1 million to 2 million in the U.S. could die from the virus if the current mitigation efforts, including social distancing are not maintained.
But with social distancing, between 100,000 and 240,000 deaths could be recorded, Birx said.
“As sobering a number as that is, we should be prepared for it,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “Is it going to be that much? I hope not, and I think the more we push on the mitigation, the less likelihood it will be that number.”