The architect of Obamacare and Joe Biden adviser Dr. Zeke Emanuel is generating shockwaves today with his prediction that all 320 million Americans need to prepare for coronavirus lockdown measures to last for the next 18 months.
Health officials estimate that finding and mass-producing a vaccine for the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) could take that long.
Although Emanuel has no clout in the Trump administration, he would become an influential figure should Biden win the presidency – especially if Biden fears the virus could reemerge as was the case in the 1918-20 Spanish flu.
Per Fox News:
Emanuel, one of the architects of the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare, is on the Biden campaign’s “Public Health Advisory Committee,” which is set up to “provide science-based, expert advice regarding steps the campaign should take to minimize health risks for the candidate, staff, and supporters,” according to a March press release.
His comments are partially consistent with statements from the Trump administration’s medical advisors and federal government documents on the pandemic. But they seem to paint a more grim picture of the country’s ability to roll back shutdowns of businesses and public life in general that are aimed at reducing the spread of the virus, which causes the disease known as COVID-19.
“Realistically, COVID-19 will be here for the next 18 months or more. We will not be able to return to normalcy until we find a vaccine or effective medications,” Emanuel said Monday on MSNBC’s “Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell.”
“I know that’s dreadful news to hear,” the Biden adviser continued. “How are people supposed to find work if this goes on in some form for a year and a half? Is all that economic pain worth trying to stop COVID-19? The truth is we have no choice. … We cannot return to normal until there’s a vaccine. Conferences, concerts, sporting events, religious services, dinner in a restaurant, none of that will resume until we find a vaccine, a treatment, or a cure.”
Despite Emanuel’s prediction, there has been some promising news in the fight against COVID-19 this week. Hospitals in St. Louis and Orange County, California, have collected their first units of convalescent plasma. The blood was given from people who recovered from COVID-19 to give to people who are very sick right now.
Although scientific testing has not yet confirmed this method’s effectiveness in alleviating COVID-19 symptoms, the same strategy was employed to combat severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (MERS-CoV). For SARS and MERS patients, receiving convalescent plasma increased the likelihood of survival and shortened the time patients were on ventilators.