There is already a bipartisan plan to achieve this; we helped write it. The plan relies on frequent testing followed by tracing the contacts of people who test positive (and their contacts) until no new positive cases are found. It also encourages voluntary isolation, at home or in hotel rooms, to prevent further disease spread. Isolated patients would receive a federal stipend, like jurors, to discourage them from returning to workplaces too soon.Gee, it's too bad we don't have leadership in America that would actually follow the scientific recommendations already proven effective in other nations to stop the spread of coronavirus. Instead, we've got a President who says "Open for business - vaccine or no" tacitly condemning thousands upon thousands of American citizens to be needlessly ravaged by disease for the sake of their own financial survival, damn whether or not they themselves manage to survive its onslaught throughout our society.
But our plan also recognizes that rural towns in Montana should not necessarily have to shut down the way New York City has. To pull off this balancing act, the country should be divided into red, yellow and green zones. The goal is to be a green zone, where fewer than one resident per 36,000 is infected. Here, large gatherings are allowed, and masks aren't required for those who don't interact with the elderly or other vulnerable populations. Green zones require a minimum of one test per day for every 10,000 people and a five-person contact tracing team for every 100,000 people. (These are the levels currently maintained in South Korea, which has suppressed covid-19.) Two weeks ago, a modest 1,900 tests a day could have kept 19 million Americans safely in green zones. Today, there are no green zones in the United States.
Most Americans " about 298 million " live in yellow zones, where disease prevalence is between .002 percent and 1 percent. But even in yellow zones, the economy could safely reopen with aggressive testing and tracing, coupled with safety measures including mandatory masks. ... (Y)ellow zones would require 2,500 tests for every daily death. To contain spread, yellow zones also would ramp up contact tracing until a team is available for every new daily coronavirus case. After one tracer conducts an interview, the team would spend 12 hours identifying all those at risk. Speed matters, because the virus spreads quickly; three days is useless for tracing. (Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C., are all yellow zones.)
A disease prevalence greater than 1 percent defines red zones. Today, 30 million Americans live in such hot spots " which include Detroit, New Jersey, New Orleans and New York City. In addition to the yellow-zone interventions, these places require stay-at-home orders. But by strictly following guidelines for testing and tracing, red zones could turn yellow within four weeks, moving steadfastly from lockdown to liberty.
Getting to green nationwide is possible by the end of the summer, but it requires ramping up testing radically.
Sans vaccine, the above is the already-proven way to defeat CV without sacrificing the economy. Until we implement such protocols America will simply keep having flare ups of disease that will devastate localities across the land for no good reason at all.