American billionaire Bill Gates has penned a Washington Post op-ed calling for a nationwide halt of public outings, claiming such a measure would be the most effective means of controlling the coronavirus pandemic currently devastating countries around the world.
“The window for making important decisions hasn’t closed,” Gates wrote, going on to outline three suggested steps to take, steps informed by a team of experts at the Gates Foundation. First, Gates calls for a consistent approach to shutdowns across the country, citing policies that are being implemented by some states while being dismissed by others.
“The country’s leaders need to be clear: Shutdown anywhere means shutdown everywhere,” Gates said, calling for stricter government restrictions on travel and public outings.
Gates’ second step calls for increased testing, placing responsibility on the government to make tests more available. The third step involves “a data-based approach to developing treatments and a vaccine.” Gates went on to generally chastise leaders who stoke rumors which lead to “panic-buying”.
In recent years, Gates has become a vocal public figure warning of potential pandemics and promoting necessary response measures. In 2015, he delivered a TED Talk titled “The next outbreak? We’re not ready” in which he broke down the United States’ lack of preparedness in the event of such a global outbreak.
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