Flattening the Curve - Then What?

5 Pages Posted: 18 Aug 2020 Last revised: 19 Aug 2020

See all articles by Mark A. Rothstein

Mark A. Rothstein

University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law; University of Louisville - Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Date Written: March 25, 2020

Abstract

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

Rothstein, Mark A., Flattening the Curve - Then What? (March 25, 2020). Hastings Bioethics Forum (March 23, 2020), University of Louisville School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper Series No. 2020-5, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3562506

Mark A. Rothstein (Contact Author)

University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law ( email )

Louisville, KY 40202
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.louisville.edu/bioethics

University of Louisville - Louis D. Brandeis School of Law ( email )

Wilson W. Wyatt Hall
Louisville, KY 40292
United States

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