Welcome to our first bonus Deep Dive as we work through this pandemic together.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Sadly, the more we learn about the pandemic, on both the medical and economic sides, the worse the best-case scenarios become.
Tens of thousands of Americans die, we have double-digit unemployment for months, countless businesses die, retirements are wiped out, and the nation is saddled with once unimaginable debt.
Here's an example: A survey of epidemiology experts, posted by a scholar at UMass Amherst and reported by FiveThirtyEight, predicted that the number of cases reported by the end of this month would most likely fall somewhere between 10,500 and 81,500.
The same survey anticipates about 200,000 deaths in the U.S. this year, but experts have established a range that stretches from as few as 19,000 deaths to as many as 1.2 million.
Public health: The optimist's scenario involves a longer outbreak, but with fewer cases at a time.
Economic havoc: Even under the optimist's scenario, the fallout for jobs and businesses will long outlast the medical calamity.
Duration: The stock market plummeted Monday after President Trump said the crisis could last until July or August or longer.
The bottom line: The optimist's scenario has summer as the light at the end of the tunnel. But with every day and every new data point, the upside scenario gets dimmer — and more distant.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Last week, we some answered common questions about the virus and how it spreads. Today, Axios' Stef Kight asked experts: What's the most responsible way to avoid spreading the virus, support your neighbors, and take care of your own basic needs, all at the same time?
My kids are driving me insane; can I please let them play with their friends?
How am I supposed to feed myself without encountering other people?
Is it actually a good idea to do errands for my elderly or immunocompromised neighbors?
How much food and supplies should I be buying to avoid frequent trips to the store, but also avoiding depleting stores' supplies?
Am I ever going to be able to get more toilet paper?
Go deeper: Stef joins Dan Primack on the Pro Rata podcast to discuss these questions.
What else do you want to know? Send your questions to email@example.com and we'll answer as many as we can next week.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
The coronavirus seems increasingly likely to plunge the world into economic times worse than anything we’ve seen in decades.
What’s next: The White House and congressional leaders are working to hammer out another stimulus bill, likely worth about $1 trillion and containing a mix of direct cash assistance to workers as well as bailouts for shell-shocked industries.
The silver lining: It may be a while, but there’s reason to believe the U.S. economy can rebound pretty quickly once this is all over, Axios’ Felix Salmon writes.
Go deeper: Dan and Dion talk about the state of the economy on Pro Rata.
Coronavirus testing in the U.S. has improved from rock bottom but is still terrible, Axios’ Caitlin Owens writes. That’s a big part of the reason the number of confirmed cases is surging.
Why it matters: Containing the virus requires us to know where and how bad outbreaks are. The only way to get that information is through widespread testing, which the U.S. can’t do right now.
Where it stands: The U.S. has been playing catch-up on testing this whole time, largely because of early decisions from the Trump administration that severely limited the number of available tests.
The bottom line: It’s impossible to know exactly how things would have played out differently if the Trump administration had moved more quickly to make more testing available, but the situation would almost certainly be better.
Go deeper: Health care editor Sam Baker joins Pro Rata to discuss the U.S. response.
Italy's official death toll now exceeds China's, after more than 600 people died from coronavirus in one day.
It's still spreading:
Photo courtesy of Wendy MacNaughton
Overwhelmed parents, here's something that might help: Graphic journalist and best-selling illustrator Wendy MacNaughton is hosting a live 30-minute online drawing class for children, Mondays through Fridays at 1 pm EST.
"When we're drawing the hair on a dog, you are drawing one line after another line after another line after another line," MacNaughton, who is also a trained social worker, told Axios' Naomi Shavin.
What they're saying: "It makes me feel happy and comfortable. She makes me laugh and she's really good at teaching," seven-year-old D.C. resident Ada tells Axios.
Bonus: MacNaughton points out some other book authors and illustrators offering parent resources...
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