(NEW YORK) — President Donald Trump adopted a grave tone during his daily COVID-19 briefing on Tuesday, announcing that the White House’s coronavirus guidelines will be enacted through the month of April to help slow the spread of the virus.
President Trump also said things might not return to normal by June 1 and suggested the pandemic could remain a threat into the summer. The president urged, “It’s absolutely critical for the American people to follow the guidelines for the next 30 days. It’s a matter of life and death, frankly.” He also warned that “this is going to be a very painful two weeks.”
The nation’s top health officials, Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx estimated on Tuesday that the U.S. death toll could reach between 100,000 and 200,000 victims.
However, Dr. Birx cautioned that if the nation ignores such guidelines — social distancing, washing hands and not touching one’s face — a possible 1.5 to 2.2 million Americans would die.
Added Birx that even with the guidelines in place, the models are still predicting “100 to 200,000 deaths, which is still way too much.”
Confirmed Fauci, “As sobering a number as that is, we should be prepared for it.”
It is believed the nation will see a peak in deaths by mid-April.
President Trump also became emotional when speaking about one of the hardest-hit areas due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Elmhurst Hospital in Queens, New York. “I grew up right next to it. I know the hospital very well,” said the president before solemnly adding, “And I watched the doctors and the nurses walking into that hospital this morning. It’s like military people going into battle, going into war. The bravery is incredible.”
The president also described the truck trailers being used as freezers to store the overflow of bodies of coronavirus victims.
According to the New York City Department of Health, 1,096 people have died in New York City due to COVID-19 with the Health Department confirming 41,771 cases.
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