Government/Health

Coronavirus panelist Birx downplays ‘doomsday’ coronavirus predictions of 60-70 percent infection rate

Ambassador Deborah Birx, White House Coronavirus Task Force Response Coordinator, addresses reporters as she holds a copy of the President’s coronavirus guidelines brochure at a coronavirus (COVID-19) update briefing Monday, March 23, 2020, in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

(USA Features) One of the country’s top healthcare professions and member of the coronavirus task force pushed back against “doomsday” predictions that millions of Americans will die from the outbreak.

“There’s no model right now, no reality on the ground, where we can see that 60-70 percent of Americans are going to get infected in the next 10-12 weeks,” Dr. Deborah Birx said.

While she didn’t mention it specifically, a model published by Imperial College London earlier this month predicts that 500,000 Britons will die from the virus along with 2.2 million Americans.

That model has been widely refuted by healthcare experts around the world as being wildly exaggerated.

Indeed, the scientist of the model has since revised the estimate of deaths in the United Kingdom to be roughly 20,000 people or fewer.




Birx, meanwhile, said that the actual data coming in from other countries were different than some of the direst projections. She noted that in many major countries, there was never an attack rate of over one in over 1,000 people.

“The predictions of the models don’t match the reality on the ground on either China, South Korea, or Italy,” she said.

Birx also pushed back against earlier reports raising the alarm of New York City hospitals running out of ICU beds, ventilators, and creating “Do Not Resuscitate” (DNR) policies for patients.

The U.S. global AIDS epidemic director also revealed that she has spoken with health officials in New York who told her that there were still ICU beds and 1000-2000 ventilators available. Also, no DNR policies have been enacted, she said.

“We don’t have evidence of that right now,” she said.


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