UPDATE: The following numbers have changed since this was posted. Please check the Covid19.healthdata.org site for current numbers.
Covid19.healthdata.org gathers data and makes projections per state. According to their model, Iowa is 17 days away from peak resource use on April 18. Iowa is projected as needing 354 ICU beds. We have 246 available. We will be 108 ICU beds short according to their data. We will need 283 ventilators. Iowa’s total COVID-19 deaths are projected to be 777 by August 4, 2020. For more info click here and select Iowa in the drop down menu.
Trump keeps saying it’s all up to the governors but governors can’t go out and buy a ventilator because the federal government is in charge of the ventilators. Nice Catch-22, Trump.
Not coincidentally, here is an important action alert by Iowa PIRG (Public Interest Research Group) that everyone can do. Contact the White House.
As hospitals ready themselves to take on a large influx of COVID-19 patients, they face a shortfall of ventilators.1
The experts are clear: If we don’t have enough ventilators to treat the projected number of COVID-19 patients and other patients who need these lifesaving machines, and unless we start ramping up supply now, it will cost people their lives.2
Unfortunately, the federal government is refusing to use its full authority to ramp up production, under pressure from business interests such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.3
As many as 100,000 older ventilators in storage could be put into use to help save American lives, but assessing that supply and marshaling the resources to fix and deploy these machines will take a coordinated effort that only the federal government is in a position to make happen.4
We still need to dramatically ramp up production to double our supply and ensure the federal government properly distributes critical medical supplies where they’re most needed.5,6
President Trump told states to fend for themselves to purchase medical equipment like ventilators, masks and other protective gear. But now states are competing against each other, causing confusion and driving up prices.
We shouldn’t be competing — it’s time to start coordinating.
States don’t have the power the federal government has, either. Only the federal government can take the dramatic steps necessary to scale up production and coordinate a multistate effort.
We have a chance now to make sure that patients struggling to breathe get what they need to survive. That’s why I need your help right now.
Already, we’ve successfully called on the administration to expand testing. The equipment industry is lobbying heavily against the administration taking charge, and we need the public to speak out to overcome its influence.
President, National Office
1. Sarah Kliff, Adam Satariano, Jessica Silver-Greenberg and Nicholas Kulish, “There Aren’t Enough Ventilators to Cope With the Coronavirus,” New York Times, March 18, 2020.
2. Suzy Khimm, “Who gets a ventilator? Hospitals facing coronavirus surge are preparing for life-or-death decisions,” NBC News, March 18, 2020.
3. Bess Levin, “Trump Won’t Order Vital Coronavirus Supplies Because Corporate CEOs Asked Him Not To,” Vanity Fair, March 23, 2020.
4. Jonathan Cohn, “How To Get More Ventilators And What To Do If We Can’t,” Huffpost, March 17, 2020.
5. Christina Wilkie and Michael Wayland, “Trump orders General Motors to make ventilators under Defense Production Act,” CNBC, March 27, 2020.
6. Quint Forgey, “‘We’re not a shipping clerk’: Trump tells governors to step up efforts to get medical supplies,” Politico, March 19, 2020.
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