Andy Slavitt and the playbook

We caught up with a few friends over the weekend. One of them is based in Germany and was sharing his excited about 100% normalcy starting next week.

After reopening restaurants and bars a few weeks ago, offices started with work on alternate weeks. As new COVID-19 cases have slowed to a bare minimum, they’re now ready for offices to reopen completely starting next week.

It blew my mind.

I found myself wondering if we’d experience that 12 months from now in the US (optimistic case).

Then, I saw an excellent thread by Andy Slavitt – a former Federal government Healthcare head.

He makes the case I’ve been attempting to make over the past weeks in my COVID-19 updates (he just does it 1000x more articulately).

(1) We are 6-8 weeks away from getting to where many countries who experienced bad outbreaks are.

(2) For these 6-8 weeks, we’d need to commit to a) universal mask wearing, b) all hot spots closed (bars, restaurants, etc.), c) prohibit interstate travel or travel into the country, d) enable families with symptoms to isolate in hotels, e) 90% lockdown

(3) We’d need unemployment insurance, will have a rough few weeks (albeit with the ability to enjoy the outdoors). BUT, we’d experience exponential decay and will see new cases become a trickle within 6-8 weeks.

(4) The blessed economy could then restart. We could test aggressively and experience the sort of normal so many countries are already beginning to experience. The risk wouldn’t completely go away without a vaccine but we’d reduce the stress on our healthcare professionals, ensure employers can begin hiring again, and can deal with the occasional outbreak as it pops up.

In his thread, he says “lets not pretend this isn’t an option.”

Another way to say the same thing would be to say – “There’s a fucking playbook out there. Let’s just follow it and prevent thousands more from dying.”