LETTER: We need to act like a first-world country

Staff Writer
Walton Sun
Walton Sun

Reading today’s (Sunday March 29) News Herald I was struck by the number of advertising pages from restaurants that emphasize now serving takeout, as if that option never existed! But, in reality it is now the only option available!

How do we balance our need to keep certain ”essential" businesses and services functioning while at the same time stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus (or any other viruses for the matter)? We need our health care and the providers. We need our groceries and goods, and we need restaurants!

The methodology used successfully to severely limit the spread and impact of Covid-19 in South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, and Hong Kong has been massive testing and strict quarantine. Certainly the USA is capable of similar measures but for whatever reason(s) we have not chosen that path (see John Stossel’s column “The red tape pandemic” in The News Herald Friday, March 27 edition).

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Testing in the US is seemingly being rationed and only used on those with symptoms in spite of all of the evidence that an individual can be asymptomatic for up to 14 days and fully contagious and therefore infecting others before ever even feeling bad. So we are allowing “essential” businesses and services to operate without knowing the status of those “essential” workers that could very easily, unknowingly infect many?

Simple logic dictates that at this time of a, basically, nationwide quarantine, that testing should be focused and prioritized to those individual’s that are essential and will be coming in contact with the high numbers of people daily — everyone working in Healthcare, grocery stores and restaurants at a minimum!

Actually, simple logic dictates that we should get our act together and emulate South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, and Hong Kong and test everyone so we can really know who has it and who to actually quarantine to shut this thing down!

For Goodness Sake! Are we a first world country or not?

Robert Barnes, Panama City