As Many As 240,000 Americans Could Die From Coronavirus, President Trump Warns | TODAY

hi everybody good morning welcome to today it's Wednesday morning and we're glad to have you along with us we certainly are we'll begin with some sobering new information on the corona virus pandemic the head of the UN just this morning describing it as the worst global crisis since World War two and it's hard to argue with that when you look at some of these numbers here at home the nation's top doctors are now estimating that even with strict social distancing measures in place in the best case scenario as many as 200 40, 000 Americans could die from kovat 19 as of this morning the number stands at nearly 4000 with one hundred and eighty eight thousand cases overall now compare that to just one month ago when there were two deaths and just 89 cases here in the US in the meantime New York City has passed another terrible milestone more than a thousand coronavirus deaths in less than three weeks and a newly approved test for the virus that can deliver results in as little as five minutes well that begins shipping today the head of the FDA has called this a game-changer in the fight our team is in position covering every angle this morning let's start with NBC's Tom Costello Tom good morning to you good morning the message from the CDC and the White House to Main Street USA be prepared as you mentioned in a best-case scenario this country could see as many as two hundred and forty thousand people died as a result of this pandemic and if the country does not engage in social distancing and isolation that death toll could be in the millions President Trump with top public health experts delivering a grim forecast for the corona virus pandemic now gripping the country I want every American to be prepared for the hard days that lie ahead we're gonna go through a very tough two weeks this is going to be a very painful very very painful two weeks the White House displaying this stunning slide showing even if current social distancing guidelines are maintained the White House projects 100, 000 to 240, 000 deaths in the u.

s.

over the next several months a casualty rate that would eclipse the number of American lives lost in the Vietnam War as sobering a number as that is we should be prepared for it the new data showing the current pace of the epidemic spread in the US the epicenter of New York Illustrated in the steep curve the president singling out the governors of New York and New Jersey for whatever reason New York got off to a very late start and we see what happens when you get off to a late start New Jersey get off to and and I think both governors are doing an excellent job but they got off to a very late start a spokesperson for New York Governor Cuomo responding this is not the time to debate but the states were not slow to respond the federal government was absent the alarming forecast prompting the president to extend those social distancing guidelines until the end of April backing office comments from last week when he said he hoped the country would reopen for business by Easter even with three-quarters of Americans subject to stay at home orders in their states more than a dozen governor's many in the south and the west have declined to issue those orders statewide overnight during an NBC News special Savannah asked dr.

Anthony Falchi if enough is being done to keep the death rate down is the social distancing that's being done right now in every state enough for that scenario to occur the mitigation and social distancing clearly works we need to put our foot on the accelerator and not on the brake we have 30 days of the extension of the mitigation the guidelines we need to really push a point also echoed earlier by dr.

deborah birx there's no magic bullet there's no magic vaccine or therapy it's just behaviors a quick note on the economy because nationwide stores like this one here at Pike and Rose the stores are closed down in Maryland as in much of the country restaurants they're trying to offer takeout service to keep their businesses going but listen to this stat about air travel on a typical day before this pandemic we would have 2.

5 million people traveling on a typical day in the air on Monday there were fewer than 200, 000 the economy has just absolutely hit a wall Savannah back to you no end in sight for the moment Tom thank you very much now to the dire situation that's only growing worse by the day here in New York with cases still surging health care workers on the front lines are being pushed to the brink NBC's Gabe Gutierrez as near the emergency field hospital that's being set up right nearby in Central Park hey Gabe good morning ho – good morning these medical tents behind me are a stark reminder of the growing emergency here in New York City alone more than a thousand deaths now more than 43, 000 confirmed cases and Governor Cuomo doesn't expect the peak here for up to three weeks this morning to fight the war New York City is getting some much-needed reinforcements FEMA rushing 250 ambulances from around the country first responders and nurses already swooping in by the thousands we're here for them we're here for New Yorkers Tim Moser is working at the new field hospital in Central Park we have 68 beds here we have ten ventilator beds so I imagine them you know that that's a high need right now after spot shortages of protective gear New York City's mayor says help is on the way we are distributing three million surgical masks all over at New York City to our hospitals but in and around the city frontline health care workers are exhausted from taking care of a skyrocketing number of patients feels like playing dominoes every single minute over 10 hours straight feeling like any one of your patients is about to fall also exhausting protecting themselves from getting sick – it is so fun as PPE but it's important that I could keep myself protected Sheena Tanis is a critical care nurse at a Brooklyn Hospital I look like I've aged 20 years in two weeks she looks over some of the sickest kovat 19 patients on the overnight shift on the semi deserted streets of the city there are also fewer first responders 15 percent of the NYPD called out sick Tuesday more than a thousand cops have contracted the virus so have about 300 firefighters this virus is the great equalizer and it's now hit home for New York Governor Andrew Cuomo I tested positive scared yes as you might imagine his brother CNN anchor Chris Cuomo has tested positive now he is going to be fine he's young in good shape strong not as strong as he thinks but he will be fine but so many other families are anxiously waiting forward while their loved ones are in hospitals when savanna and Hoda another sobering milestone the number of confirmed cases here in New York State has just surpassed surpassed that of China's ube province where the pandemic started Wow back to you staggering numbers there all right Gabe thank you let's turn now to our medical correspondent dr.

John Torres and NBC News contributor dr.

Joseph fair an expert on the study of viruses who was on the front lines of the fight against Ebola in Africa doctors good morning I will start with you doctor fair this morning because a lot of people were stunned to see this projection from the White House that estimates 100 to 200 thousand people Americans could die and that is if everything goes right if social distancing is executed exquisitely in all 50 states is that happening right now absolutely not I mean when you see on the map of states with full state lock downs and then you see the map with partial state lock downs and you see the states with no lock downs until all 50 states do it and they all do it at the same time it's really kind of a moot point as we talked about you know those the best-case scenarios with everyone doing the same thing that's only going to happen if all 50 states are doing the same thing that's why it really urged you know the association of governors to get together everybody get on the same page as far as what they're going to do and everybody implement the same measure strictly across the states the other question I had is and I think we just put the chart up there and it shows the big peak that we're trying to avoid and then the flattening of the curve that we're hoping for it's suggesting okay we can keep that curve low keep those deaths hovering around 100 to 200 thousand staggering that we're even talking in those terms but nevertheless there's the social distancing if it ends on April 30th as is the current scenario would that be enough or in all reality to social distancing need to go on for longer I know realistically I think it's gonna have to go on for 6 – even 10 weeks and again it goes from now yeah absolutely and that's if everyone starts today right and so you know again it goes back to if everyone's not doing it there are still going to be people out there spreading it there are things we're going to have to do we have to go to the grocery store we have to go to the pharmacy there are people that are working in hospitals etc but we can all do our own part and everybody has to do it and frankly I even think we need to get the police involved in it just as far as implementing strict distancing measures if you see people crowded together have them start breaking it up Wow okay that was pretty riveting dr.

Torres let's talk to you yesterday at the news conference the president talked about maybe Americans should wear some kind of mask or bandana he suggests that he said don't use the the the masks that the health professionals use what do you think about regular everyday Americans getting some type of face covering during this time and what's your here here to size this debate one side of the CDC and World Health Organization's saying that the general public doesn't really need to use them and probably shouldn't use them with the other side you're hearing from the president in fact saying you know let's wear scarves and it doesn't hurt people to use those last night on the special that you guys hosted doctor foul she actually said something pretty interesting I think it's good to bring up those masks what they're looking at doing is telling people to wear those masks because they protect people who are sick or who might have it are asymptomatic from spreading it to other people they're not looking at it as far as people protecting themselves from getting it and so I think that's a big thing to understand and they're looking at it very heavily right now and my guess is at some point they're gonna go ahead and make a recommendation that people do wear things like that but save the surgical masks save the n95 masks for the hutt the healthcare workers in the frontline workers because they need them but as far as the other ones the World Health Organization has said there are some studies saying that they might make things a little worse and more likely to catch the virus because people get a false sense of security and they get within that six foot perimeter that we want to keep away from each other but at the same time they could offer a little bit of protection and dr.

Torres a lot of my friends have been talking about this they're afraid to go to the grocery store the drugstore they're wondering how contagious is this are they putting themselves at risk when they leave their home and go out even for a short period of time so anytime you leave your house and you go outside there could be people out there that are either sick or they're asymptomatic they don't have the symptoms but they do carry the virus and so getting that six foot distance is important if you go to the grocery store if you go shopping it's gonna be hard to do that and so you are putting yourself at a little bit of risk every time you go out and do something like that and that's why we say you know number one if you're out and about make sure you keep as good as you can that six foot distance and when you get back home wash your hands especially before you touch your face and that's kind of the best you can do because there are some instances you're gonna need to go out and there are some things you're going to need to do but at the same time you want to make sure you protect yourself as best you can because it is adding a little bit of risk every time you get out there all right dr.

Torres dr.

fair thank you as always it's good to have you with us and get that that so gathered up and let's grab on my video to go over with my kids and even remind myself scrub scrub under the fingernails and in between right and when you don't we got this right here too I'm making her a business alright also breaking overnight another escalating situation tied to the outbreak after dozens of crew members tested positive on a u.

s.

Navy aircraft carrier their captain now making a desperate plea for help and national correspondent Miguel Almaguer has the very latest on this story hey Miguel good morning Jota good morning the captain of that nuclear aircraft carrier says many of his crew members are sick and he's pleading with the Navy to put them into isolation a situation he says is quickly deteriorating the commander of a navy aircraft carrier docked in Guam giving a dire warning about dozens of servicemen aboard diagnosed with the corona virus according to a letter obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle the captain of the USS Theodore Roosevelt telling Navy leaders the spread of the illness is ongoing and accelerating and that removing all but 10% of the crew is a necessary risk in order to stop the spread of the virus we are not at war sailors do not need to die if we do not act now we are failing to properly take care of our most trusted asset our sailors captain Crozier writing that only a small number of infected sailors have been taken off the ship and that following official guidelines for a 14-day quarantine and social distancing in such tight quarters is impossible saying due to a warships inheret limitations of space we are not doing this the captain forced to ask for compliant quarantine rooms on shore in Guam for his entire crew as soon as possible yet despite those limitations defense secretary Mark Esper telling CBS News it is not time to evacuate a vessel at this point make sure that we contain the virus that we deploy testing kits we get a good assessment of how much of the crew is infected acting Navy secretary Thomas mood ly stressing to MSNBC that the carrier must remain operational but we're doing everything we can to ensure that the ship maintains a level of readiness that in case there is something that happens they can be ready to go this morning a wartime ship doing battle with the virus threatening us all the scare on the USS Theodore comes after hundreds of passengers have gotten sick and some have even died on cruise ships of course the big concern is like cruise ship on the USS Theodore those tight quarters certainly can spread the virus guys back to you all right Miguel thank you all right what say you we should do the weather should be like I'm moving all the words are going into an order now that's what's happening to me mr.

Roker good morning morning good see you too it is like Yoda yeah these are not the droids you're looking for but let's see this is not the storm you're looking for we got a big storm system off the New England coast it is going to start to intensify the mid-atlantic coast I should say a lot of wet weather along the Carolinas we're gonna watch this thing with 60 mile-per-hour wind but gust in the Outer Banks coastal flooding from Maryland on into North Carolina tomorrow that heavy rain moves into New England gusts of up to 50 miles per hour Cape Cod and the islands a heaviest rain is going to be right along the New England coastline and out west we've got a big storm system coming in bringing rain and snow into the Pacific Northwest of the Cascades with snowfall amounts anywhere from 6 to 12 inches of snow you.

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