St. Louis and New Orleans, two cities with fairly comparable populations, have a huge disparity in the number of coronavirus cases.
Coronavirus Cases, March 26, 2020, 8:30 a.m. Central Time:
St. Louis (population 319,000) 69 cases.
New Orleans (population 391,000) 997 cases.
These statistics are for the respective cities only, not the surrounding areas. Similar differences in coronavirus cases appear across the country.
When will you be able to fully reopen your dental office?
Three factors will determine the answer to that question:
1. Where are you located? Hot spots such as New York will be locked down longer than many other areas.
2. Statewide versus county-by-county approach. Some states, such as California, have closed all non-essential businesses statewide; other states, such as Florida, are taking a more localized approach. The decisions made by your governor make a difference.
3. Availability of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). Even if you are in an area that has been impacted less severely by the coronavirus, government officials will be reluctant to allow dental offices to open for business as usual as long as PPE is in scarce supply in some parts of the country.
In the coming weeks, look for a mixture of good and bad news: surging cases in hot spots, a push to reopen areas of the country with relatively few cases, and (possibly) an easing of the shortage of PPE.