The Morning Dispatch: The Other Looming Health Care Disaster

Happy Thursday! We here at The Dispatch may not always see eye-to-eye on everything, but we’ll do our best never to threaten to sue each other over those disagreements.

Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • As of Wednesday night, there are now 1,039,909 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States (an increase of 27,326/2.7 percent since yesterday) and 60,967 deaths (an increase of 2,612/4.5 percent increase since yesterday), according to the Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 Dashboard, leading to a mortality rate among confirmed cases of 5.9 percent (the true mortality rate is likely much lower, but it’s impossible to determine precisely due to incomplete testing regimens). Of 6,026,170 coronavirus tests conducted in the United States (230,442 conducted since yesterday), 17.3 percent have come back positive. Meanwhile, 120,720 have recovered from the virus (an increase of 4,7284/4.1 percent since yesterday). 

  • Johns Hopkins changed how it is presenting hospitalization data to account for patchwork reporting approaches across states, but, as the COVID Tracking Project writes, “it is impossible to assemble anything resembling the real statistics for hospitalizations.” Until these discrepancies are addressed, we’ll discontinue including that figure here.

  • The coronavirus pandemic led the U.S. economy to shrink at a 4.8 percent annual rate last quarter, the first quarterly decline in six years and the worst drop since the 2008 recession. The Congressional Budget Office recently estimated GDP will contract at a 40 percent annual rate this coming quarter.

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