Coronavirus: The Law of Unintended Consequences
With perfect hindsight, our response to the Red Chinese Coronavirus should have been an all-out effort to protect the residents of nursing homes, assisted-living centers, and those with serious health liabilities such as: lung disorders, heart disease, diabetes, etc.
The experts from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said draconian measures were necessary to prevent our hospitals from being overwhelmed by the Coronavirus. Except for New York, our hospitals were not overwhelmed.
The miraculous transformation of New York Cityís Javits Center into a huge hospital and the arrival of the USNS Comfort created far more hospital beds than were actually needed or used. But by stopping hospitals from performing elective procedures and by scaring the public to the point where very few would venture near a hospital, the draconian measures have inflicted grievance harm on the very hospitals the measures were supposed to preserve.
The experts from the National Institutes of Health and the Center for Disease Control, under six previous presidents and congresses, have a great deal to answer for. Ever since the flu epidemic of 1957-58 and all the flu epidemics that followed, we should have learned to keep our national and state stockpiles of epidemic/pandemic supplies full to the top. It should not have been necessary for the Trump Administration to go to such herculean efforts to forge a government/private sector partnership to restore our national and state stockpiles.
Some states were better than others in responding to the Red Chinese Coronavirus. New York made the mistake of returning virus-infected health-care workers and patients to their nursing homes and assisted-living centers when they could and should have been hospitalized in the renovated Javits Center or put on the USNS Comfort hospital ship. New Yorkers over age 70 account for more than 30-percent of Red Chinese Coronavirus deaths in New York. We should have learned what was done in New York was not a model for the rest of the nation.
We learned different states and even different hospitals account for fatalities in vastly different ways. From 1960 to 2016, we had the benefit of the 122 Cities Mortality Reporting System. Inexplicably, the Obama Administration cancelled the system in 2016. Now, we do not know how many victims died due to the Red Chinese Coronavirus and how many deaths were caused by some other life-ending medical condition.
The video of two California physicians who said they were pressured to report deaths as due to Coronavirus was banished by YouTube. Cui Bono? Medicare gives a 20-percent bonus to hospitals that care for Red Chinese Coronavirus patients. That is a perverse incentive that rewards false reporting.
We learned that Big Pharma in its search for a "cure" or even a "treatment" will bad mouth inexpensive generic drugs in its quest to patent expensive new drugs. Big Pharma buys a lot of advertising. So, the mainstream mediaís efforts to deny the life-saving effectiveness of the early use of inexpensive hydroxychloraquine should come as no surprise.
The Red Chinese Coronavirus is different enough from previous flu strains that our seniors may need to mask and social distance for a long, long time. Meanwhile, the rest of the nation needs to get back to work.
©2020. William Hamilton.
William Hamilton is a laureate of the Oklahoma Military Hall of Fame, the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame, the Nebraska Aviation Hall of Fame, the Colorado Aviation Hall of Fame, and the Oklahoma University Army ROTC Wall of Fame. Dr. Hamiltonís latest book: Formula for Failure in Vietnam: The Folly of Limited Warfare can be ordered toll free at: (800) 253-2187 Or, go to Amazon.com.