US President Donald Trump walks from Marine One to the White House as a secret service agent wearing a face mask looks on May 14, 2020, in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
US President Donald Trump has come under scrutiny for his scattershot approach toward the handling of the coronavirus outbreak, which puts the United States on the top of the list of the worst-affected nations across the globe.
The coronavirus, which was publicly reported in the US at the end of February, has now infected some 1,484,287 and killed 88,507 others nationwide, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Health experts warned that Trump administrationís handling of the virus, which causes the respiratory illness COVID-19, has put the country at serious risk.
Rick Bright, who led the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority until he was demoted in late April, said that the country is left vulnerable to a potentially open-ended wave of infections this fall.
According to Bright, the US faces the "darkest winter in modern history" if the Trump administration does not develop a more coordinated national response.
"Our window of opportunity is closing," Bright said.
"We donít have a single point of leadership right now for this response, and we donít have a master plan for this response. So those two things are absolutely critical," Bright added.
Bright also said that the country still lacks a "comprehensive strategy" involving testing and tracing, which is essential for preventing future outbreaks in the country.
He said Washington still lacks a plan for what to do once a vaccine is developed.
In the meantime, Trump, who is seeking reelection in November, has begun to reopen the stricken economy in several states, without even clear federal guidance.
Chief policy officer with the US Chamber of Commerce, Neil Bradley, said even scaled-down guidance from federal agencies is critical for providing a road map for state and local leaders and for businesses considering how best to resume operations.
SOURCE: PRESS TV