This is a critical caveat to slow the COVID-19 spread.
- Olympia, WA
A message from Governor Jay Inslee,
Hey Washington. You may have heard that we’re sending back the Army field hospital at CenturyLink Field. And we’re doing that because there are more urgent needs in other parts of the country.
This means we are all doing our part here in Washington to slow the spread of COVID-19, and so this is an encouraging sign. But there is a critical caveat.
Our current projections are built on the assumption that people will continue in our state to follow physical distancing in their lives.
This graph by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation shows the fatalities we’ve experienced. We don’t know if we’re at the peak yet, but we hope it will follow this model and go down as this line would indicate.
Remember: This model estimates the eventual number of cases and deaths in Washington state only if we all continue to stay home. That’s still a lot of fatalities.
Now, look at the preliminary estimate of what happens if we were to stop our distancing measures, even two weeks from now. As the blue line indicates, the number of deaths would go up. And we are a better state than that here in Washington.
If we behave like we have gone back to normal, if we stop physical distancing, it could undo all our progress.
It could get more people sick. It could get people killed.
The threat of this virus is just as deadly now as it was on March 23, when I directed Washingtonians to Stay Home and Stay Healthy. We simply have to commit to the charge from public health to protect ourselves and our loved ones. If you’re wishing you were at a live sporting event right now, well, we just have to realize this: We’re not even at halftime in this effort.
We know that the eyes of the country are on us. So let’s keep proving what’s possible when we stand united — but at least six feet apart — against this virus.
So I hope you can stay home, stay healthy. Wash your hands. Good luck to us all.