End the partisan blame, let’s join together to stop the virus

March 21, 2020

Dr. Rene Bravo

Opinion by Dr. Rene Bravo

This Coronavirus outbreak has folks terrified, confused, bewildered, skeptical, doubtful, and some outright just don’t believe it. Retirement accounts have been devastated, businesses are on the brink, workers laid off, grocery and supply shortages.

In a matter of a few short weeks, life as we have known it has come to a screeching halt.

Our leaders are now being forced to lead and make tough choices. Why? Coronavirus-19 ( the Novel corona virus) as it is named, is real. Regardless of origin or causal theories, this virus will change things for a bit.

Why? Because it is deadly and it’s not just another little flu bug. All of the Chinese, Italian and now Iranian experience tells us that it will make the people who get it very sick, and a sizable number will die.

This virus has the ability to really attack the lungs, leading to respiratory distress, and potentially death rather quickly. There is no known cure, although some antivirals are being investigated. Those over 65, especially with pulmonary conditions, the smokers, potentially those who vape, and those with other diseases, are at highest risk.

Since we have no cure, what can we do now after seeing what happened in Europe? Try to prevent the outbreak by halting its transmission. It’s that simple. And we will have only one chance to do this and it’s now. Period.

We won’t be able to revisit this later after the deaths of our friends and loved ones. So the draconian measures we will endure for a while will be the price we pay to potentially save others.

As a doctor, the nightmare scenario of choosing who will get the ventilator and who will not when there are too few available, are looming in front of us. And who we could have saved, and who we will let die. This will happen here as it happened in Italy if we fail to prevent widespread infections.

So we “shelter at home.” That’s the logical, compassionate and scientific thing to do. We are doing this for the most fragile of us who will face the highest mortality from this scourge. The medically frail, the elderly, those with chronic disease, the asthmatics, diabetics and just about any disease that alters your immune system.

It is time we switch off all the partisan political stuff, put away the conspiracy theories for awhile, and for once join together in a common cause, to keep this virus from spreading.

How long will this take? Really no one knows, but likely about a month or more until new cases stop being discovered. Later there will be time for finger pointing and looking back on how we could have done this better, or what was worthless, but with so much at stake (like the lives of our elders and sick among us), let’s make this our finest hour.

Intelligence rather than resistance. Selflessness rather than selfishness. It will be over when it’s over, and I really think it should turn out better because we will chose to learn from the Chinese and Italian catastrophes.

As a doctor, I’m asking everyone to really do their best to shelter at home. And please stay calm, use common sense, and try not to overrun a healthcare system which will be bowing under the weight of current stresses. Like all things, this too shall pass.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments


South Korea has been dealing with the virus for about two months longer than the US because, well, our leaders chose to kick it down the road so they wouldn’t look bad. Plus, South Korea started testing early and often, unlike here in the US. Of course they’re going to show a higher incidence rate because they test at a rate that makes the US look shameful. In about two weeks let’s revisit your little statistics there.

You don’t have to wait two weeks, just look at the data available today. Or, do you believe our illustrious Governor Newsom, who predicted that 56% of Californians would be infected by the end of next week? Really? 56%? That would be 20 million infections for a disease that only has 340,000 cases worldwide after ongoing for at least three months. Interesting.

Look at the growth factor in the United States over the last 5 days: 1.62 – 1.59 – 1.23 – 1.17 – 1.04 . Our curve is already flattening. In two weeks the US will have a factor well below one, which means the exponential growth phase is over.

I worked in public health for 30 years. It baffles me why so many people want to see this become a disaster.

With the Dow Jones Industrial average down 30% and estimates that the federal budget deficit could reach $5 trillion this year, some may say we’re already in the midst of a “disaster.”

Don’t politicize, like this guy? Just picked it off a recent twitter:

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump


@JBPritzker, Governor of Illinois, and a very small group of certain other Governors, together with Fake News @CNN & Concast (MSDNC), shouldn’t be blaming the Federal Government for their own shortcomings. We are there to back you up should you fail, and always will be!

Thank you Dr. Bravo for all you do for our community.

The call for ending partisanship is a call to end accountability, and is complete BS.

After getting your family home and safe, provisions, etc. …

Then NOW it the time to reassess your political allegiances.

The only people who want silence are GOP party regulars, who what us to ignore the consequences of Trump’s lack of competence. THE GOP PARTY REGULARS DON’T WANT YOU TO THINK INDEPENDENTLY.

Dr. Bravo as I recall you were a GOP candidate for Congress were you not? On the Republican Central Committee, were you not? Disingenuous call for non partisanship.

NOW is the time to retain your rights as AMERICANS and rethink would you voted for and who you support.

Yeah I am rethinking a lot of things.

Old habits die hard for some… I think you missed the doc’s point…. there will be time later to do your negative political thing, but right now the virus does not discriminate between Democrats or Republicans…and there will be lots of blame and things done wrong. I agree , BUT it is time to stand together to prevent the spread. Hope you agree to that and stay healthy


Definitely, stand together, stay healthy and isolated, as I have been posting for some time, in spite of all the naysayers, with some good solid advice and awareness.

BUT as a country we would be South Korea or Taiwan, if Trump acted, rather than spending his time trying to gain political points calling the virus an impeachment HOAX.

South Korea has a population of 50 million.

Taiwan has a population of 24 million.

The United States has a population of over 350 million.

South Korea has a case incidence rate of 174 cases per 1 million population.

The US has a case incidence rate of 115 cases per 1 million population.

Why, exactly, are you wishing our situation was more like South Korea?

South Korea can test every person suspected of having Covid-19. The US has just officially given up, no more testing, it is what it is. The US is now a third world country, having fallen behind South Korea and even China.

Seriously, what are you talking about? The US is ramping up testing dramatically right now. The current test methods require specific reagents (which were depleted quickly and are being re-supplied) and a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) instrument. While there are a lot of PCRs out there, with a population of 350 million, there weren’t enough to take on the surge. New, faster tests are already out and newer tests, including at-home kits, are fast tracking to release.

“A third world country”?? That may be your hope, but it isn’t anywhere close to reality.