Aside from the number of infected people and the thousands of death recorded so far due to the coronavirus pandemic, the biggest problem we have had to endure is the fact that our country has been in total lockdown for a number of weeks now, in what has been an unprecedented situation.
A total lockdown of the country means economic activities are grounded, millions of jobs are lost within a short period of time, firms are being closed, and the national income has been greatly hit by all of these developments. Going by all of these developments, it is not a surprise to see that President Trump has been trying as much as he could for the past few weeks to reopen the country and get the economy running again. In fact, the initial plans were to get the country running again before the Easter holiday, but we want to believe the President has been warned about doing it too early.
The New Guidelines for Reopening the Country
It comes as little surprise when the President announced on Thursday that a new guideline has been set to facilitate the reopening of the country and get our economy running again in the next few days. In his press briefing at White House, Mr. Trump announced that he would be working with the state Governors to implement these guidelines at their various states.
A very important point to note is that, these guidelines, which are divided into three phases, are not absolute, and they can only be ratified and approved on the advice of the medical professionals. According to Trump, this is the time to try and reopen the country as he has been advised by government experts that the coronavirus pandemic has been ‘flattened’ in America, which means the country can’t continue to be in perpetual lockdown. While speaking on Thursday, he said; ‘A national shutdown is not a sustainable long term solution. To preserve the health of our citizens, we must also preserve the health and functioning of our economy’.
Outline of the Guidelines
As presented by the federal government, any state or county that would be nominated for the three phase guideline must first have to go through a ‘gated criteria of 14 days of decreasing evidence of illness’. After this is established, the three phase guideline can now be followed through. The three phases are presented below as follow:
Phase 1:This stipulates that ‘all vulnerable individuals, including those with comorbidity continuing to shelter in place, and insuring that those that first go out in public are not those that are the most vulnerable to bad outcomes in the disease’. The stipulated six feet social distancing regulation must still be adhered to here.
Phase 2: In this phase, all regulations regarding social distancing must still be followed religiously, and no gatherings of more than 50 people must hold for any reasons according to the medical experts. There is also still the need to shelter the vulnerable population here, but the traveling ban for non essentials are relaxed in this phase.
Phase 3: In the final phase, the government advises that once it has been established that new cases are not being recorded, the vulnerable members of the society can start going out to carry out their daily activities. However, citizens are still advised to keep to social distancing and avoid crowded areas.
According to the President, there are some states that have qualified for the first phase already, and we can only hope that things turn out as planned in the next few weeks, and our country reopened and active again.