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A Way to Help Keep the COVID-19 Economy Working

If the economy is to be saved before the pandemic wipes it out, it will happen on the public-health front. And here, the least important medically of the three major biomedical channels now in play may well be the one that could impede economic Armageddon.

CAMBRIDGE – As the coronavirus pandemic shuts down the world’s economies, stock markets plummet, and unemployment rises, policymakers will be forced to figure out how to contain the outbreak while preventing financial and economic collapse. Most economic proposals in developed countries focus on cash payments to people, deferred tax payments, and business bailouts.

But biomedicine is critical to saving the economy, and of the three major biomedical channels now in play, the least important medically is the one that could impede an economic Armageddon.

It’s a test to check whether a person has had, recovered from, and thus become immune to COVID-19. Scientists say that low-symptom and symptomless cases exceed the symptomatic. When these asymptomatic people are over the infection, they could go to work – they will not infect those with whom they come into contact. But we need to know who they are.

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