By Daily News Editorial Board New York Daily News
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Will NYC be able to get its testing infrastructure in place to identify and isolate the sick. It is a question the Daily News editorial board poses as we move into May.
April, wrote a poet, is the cruelest month. So it was in New York City and America as we weathered a viral storm and its concomitant carnage. As the calendar turns to May, some cruelty appears to be abating. But death could rush back with a vengeance if the nation, understandably eager to nurse its economic wounds, forgets lessons just agonizingly absorbed.
A month ago, 4,780 Americans had lost their lives to COVID-19. Today, we'll top 63,000 fatalities. The coronavirus has fallen far past its peak here in its epicenter, but nationwide, over the last five days, U.S. deaths averaged around 2,000.
If relaxing social distancing restrictions gives the virus new life, such a daily drumbeat of death could be drawn out.
Thirty-one states begin to reopen in some degree this weekend. We pray that their economies revive without enabling this plague's resurgence. We pray that these states shine a light that New York and New Jersey, hardest hit of all, can follow.
Still, what our dense metropolis needs most now, what it still lacks, is a testing infrastructure to identify and isolate the sick.
President Trump, the only one who can marshal the federal government to help us build it, has constantly moved goalposts. He has taken credit for lives saved by social distancing in one breath while agitating to end restrictions in the next.
If the president is right that shutdowns for which he now claims credit saved thousands of lives, will he accept that ending them could have the opposite effect? ___ Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.