Flattening the Curve - Then What?
Hastings Bioethics Forum (March 23, 2020)
5 Pages Posted: 18 Aug 2020 Last revised: 19 Aug 2020
Date Written: March 25, 2020
In addition to social distancing, the strategy of flattening the curve requires a significant increase in surge capacity at hospitals. Unfortunately, one reason for the lack of surge capacity is that excess capacity in hospitals is the exact opposite of high utilization rates that hospitals attempt to maintain for financial reasons. Fragmentation of public health responsibility among federal, state, and local officials often leads to gaps in coverage and inconsistent messages for the public. Finally, the essential social solidarity to respond to the pandemic has been undermined by a divisive political system and public figures who dispense ignorant and divisive information on cable news outlets that contradicts scientific experts and public health officials.
Keywords: Coronavirus, flattening the curve, pandemic, public health, social distancing, surge capacity
JEL Classification: K31, K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation