Right now I don't particularly care how this started in the US or the appalling lack of any action (other than shutting out select foreigners) for well over a month. All that can be investigated and debated at another time. What I am concerned with is what is happening now.
The absolute number one priority should be to get health care workers the proper PPEs they need to protect themselves and to keep them from spreading the virus to their patients and families. I have a friend in California who is a nurse in the ICU. They have been told that due to a lack of proper equipment they should wear bandanas!! Appalling! The government should order manufacturers to rapidly re-tool and get production moving so that proper masks, including N95 masks as well as surgical masks, start getting distributed within the next 7 days. It's entirely possible with the will to do so. If China can build a hospital in a week, why can't we produce masks???
I am so tired of the white house briefing being mostly about how great the president is handling things and really want to see more actions!
We have been issued 1 N95 mask and been told "re-use and use sparingly." This creates a near-impossible decision-making process on even the most routine daily interactions with the public since people with the virus don't magically turn another color to tell you they have it.
The planning process at the moment is figuring out how to maintain our citywide emergency services if, say, 1/3 to 1/2 of the paramedics, firefighters, nurses, doctors, and/or police officers are quarantined. Who takes over what job? What potential exposure level constitutes someone needing to self-quarantine when we are already short on emergency personnel? How many hours can we ask people to work in a high risk/high stress environment when we know fatigue combined with direct exposure is a risk factor for a more serious case of COVID 19, especially considering we don't have proper protective equipment? All of these decisions are being made blindly due to lack of proper data. It is incredibly difficult to see a doctor right now and they still have strict rules on who can get tested.
Edited to add:
It's not all doom and gloom. The numbers from Washington State are beginning to look better. The next few days will be important to see how well their measures are working.