White House economic adviser Peter Navarro claimed on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday that lockdowns to curb the spread of the coronavirus will "indirectly" kill more people than the virus itself.

Why it matters: President Trump and some of his political and economic advisers have been pushing aggressively to reopen parts of the U.S. economy, even as public health experts like Anthony Fauci warn that it could lead to a resurgence in cases and ultimately more deaths.

  • Lockdowns have disrupted key medical procedures and screenings that are unrelated to the coronavirus and have been deemed "nonessential." This includes cancer screenings.
  • Social distancing and the economic devastation caused by the virus have also undoubtedly taken a toll on Americans' mental health. But Navarro did not provide specific evidence for his claim that these side effects will prove more deadly than the virus, which has killed nearly 90,000 people in the U.S.

What he's saying: "The fact of the matter is, and what President Trump realized early on, is that if you lock people down, you may save lives directly from the China virus [coronavirus]. But you indirectly, you're going to kill a lot more people," Navarro said.

  • "And why do I say that? We know statistically based on our experience with the China trade shock in the 2000s that unemployment creates more suicides, depression and drug abuse."
  • "But we also know this in this crisis, as we've basically locked down our hospitals for everything but COVID, women haven't been getting mammograms or cervical examinations for cancer. We haven't been able to do other procedures for the heart or the kidneys. And that's going to kill people as well."

The big picture: Navarro also criticized the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, claiming they "let the country down" because "not only did they keep the testing within the bureaucracy, they had a bad test."

  • Instead of relying on the World Health Organization's coronavirus test in the early days of the outbreak, the CDC set out to create its own test.
  • But the CDC’s test didn’t always work, and manufacturing had to be relocated following possible contamination.

Since the lab contamination, the United States has only conducted 11 million coronavirus tests for a population of more than 329 million.

  • The country is currently conducting only half of the daily number of tests that some experts say we need to safely return to normal life, Axios' Caitlin Owens reports.

Go deeper: The pandemic's disruption of key health procedures could prove deadly

Go deeper

Updated 8 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

The United Kingdom slumped into recession on Wednesday, as its gross domestic product GDP shrank 20.4% compared with the first three months of the year.

By the numbers: Over 741,400 people have died of the novel coronavirus globally and more than 20.2 million have tested positive, per Johns Hopkins. Almost 12.6 million have recovered from the virus.

Updated 21 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of noon ET: 20,391,697 — Total deaths: 744,211— Total recoveries: 12,625,076Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11:30 a.m. ET: 5,161,612 — Total deaths: 164,690 — Total recoveries: 1,714,960 — Total tests: 63,252,257Map.
  3. Business: U.S. already feeling effects of ending unemployment benefits — U.S. producer prices rose last month by the most since October 2018.
  4. Public health: America is flying blind on its coronavirus response.
  5. Education: Gallup: America's confidence in public school system jumps to highest level since 2004.
  6. World: Lebanon reports coronavirus record, UN warns Beirut blast may drive cases higher
Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
7 hours ago - Health

America's flying blind on its coronavirus response

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A month after the Trump administration changed how hospital data is reported, the public release of this data "has slowed to a crawl," the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: This is the latest example of how the world's wealthiest country just can't get it together.