Biden Warns Of Another 200,000 COVID-19 Deaths By His Inauguration
Biden shared his thoughts on the pandemic during a video conference call on Wednesday, November 18, as coronavirus cases continue to surge across the United States.
At the time of writing, November 19, the US has reported more than 11.5 million confirmed cases of the virus and more than a quarter of a million deaths.
Following his success in the election, Biden is set to be sworn into office on January 20. However, he told those on the call that public health experts have said they could see ‘as many as 200,000 dead…by the time we get sworn in.’
Biden has previously warned about the additional deaths, describing the coming months as a ‘dark winter’.
During the call, the Democrat said the coronavirus death toll has ‘reached a proportion that is way, way, way, way, out of whack’, and admitted that it is ‘skyrocketing with no real end in sight’.
Biden was joined on the call by Marcella Nunez-Smith, Yale University’s associate dean for health equity research and a co-chair on Biden’s COVID-19 advisory board.
Together, Biden and Nunez-Smith spoke with four frontline workers; an ICU nurse from Minnesota, a school nurse from Ohio, a firefighter from Indiana and a homecare worker from Washington State, Fox News reports.
ICU nurse Mary Turner said that she knows ‘we are facing immense death and suffering in the coming weeks’ adding: ‘We will be there. But we need to act now to protect our workers so we can save as many lives as possible.’
As Trump still refuses to admit defeat, Biden noted that his incoming administration has been ‘unable to get access to the kinds of things we need to know about’ regarding the pandemic.
Unless it’s made available soon, we’re going to be behind by weeks or months, being able to put together the whole initiative.
In a tweet shared today, Sen. Chris Murphy said Trump’s vaccine distribution team hasn’t briefed anyone on Biden’s transition team ‘and [has] no plans to do so.’
Ron Klain, Biden’s chief of staff, said that without the formal approval from the General Services Administration, Biden’s COVID-19 team can’t coordinate with federal employees on plans to tackle the pandemic, CNBC reports.
In his coronavirus plan, Biden states that ‘leadership requires listening to experts and communicating credible information to the American public’, adding: ‘We must move boldly, smartly, and swiftly.’
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