Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have witnessed the shortcomings of our healthcare and disaster management ecosystems in the face of a new threat. The United States experienced loss of life and economic impact more remarkable than almost any other developed nation. While we can’t go back and fix the problems of the past, I am committed to learning the lessons that will help us to better tacklefuture public health challenges, with the knowledge that COVID-19 could have been a much deadlier virus.
We should use this new knowledge to restructure and codify our responses so that the next virus does not have potentially disastrous outcomes.
The lessons I speak of are not moral, but based in the science of economics. I saw our economy face challenges this year that I could never have predicted, and the overall economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic is still only somewhat understood. Still, we know that other developed nations addressed the pandemic differently than ours, and greatly diminished the relative economic impact that they experienced. These nations were able to reopen earlier, while diminishing the swelling burden on their healthcare systems.
We need to recognize and respect the scientists who did predict the outcomes, and remember to listen to our experts in the future. I intend to support continuing study of the economic impact of COVID-19, and to hold our public offices accountable for drafting legislation that improves future outcomes.
I believe in an optimistic future in which the next pandemic interrupts our lives for only a few months, or not at all, instead of years. A future in which the voices of world-class economists and epidemiologists rise above the din of politics in order to drive evidence based disaster management legislation and response.