All 50 states are in some phase of re-opening their economies after a few weeks, and in some cases several months, of lockdown. Here in Maryland, health officials announced another day of fewer than 400 new cases of COVID-19, and the statewide positivity rate has dropped to 6.2%. It’s been 10 weeks since we’ve had as few COVID patients in ICU beds as we do now, and as of yesterday (6/15/20), overall hospitalizations had dropped for 20 days in a row. With 150+ testing sites now open, state officials hope that many more people will be tested in the coming weeks.
These trends propelled Maryland Governor Larry Hogan to announce last Wednesday further easing of restrictions for a greater number of businesses. Indoor dining is now allowed in many jurisdictions, and as of Friday, gyms and malls will also be allowed to re-open.
Tom's first guest today is considered one of the world’s leading experts on infectious diseases, and at a media briefing last week he expressed concerns about the pace at which our state, and others, are re-opening. Dr. Tom Inglesby is the director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security at the Bloomberg School of Public Health. He has served on Governor Hogan’s Coronavirus Response Team since the governor announced a state of emergency in early March. Dr. Inglesby joins us via Skype.