On February 29th, I shook hands with someone who, unbeknownst to me, had just returned from Milan.
A couple of weeks later, my nose began to run. A week after that, I had a cold. I coughed. I sneezed. Three days ago I had a sinus headache that felt like an industrial staple through the bridge of my nose.
All of my maladies might have been symptoms of the coronavirus. Also, people can have the coronavirus and have no symptoms at all. Imagine that. If you feel fine, you might have the coronavirus.
I probably should have consulted my primary care physician, but I didn’t, because I don’t have a primary care physician. I don’t have insurance. If I still had insurance, I wouldn’t have gone to a doctor because, when I had insurance, my deductible was ridiculously, catastrophically, high.
I’m on the mend now. I can breath, and my sinus headache feels like a staple from a Swingline, and not the industrial staples they use to hold cardboard boxes together. My coughs have subsided to a chuckle.
So maybe I don’t have Coronavirus. Maybe I never did.
But I’m not the only one that doesn’t have insurance. Millions of Americans don’t have insurance. Millions more have a deductible that’s so high they won’t use their insurance till it’s time to call an ambulance (or an Uber) to take them to an emergency room. That means that there are potentially tens of millions of Americans who are infected with the Coronavirus, who aren’t being diagnosed and treated. Some of them are sheltered in place. You might meet them at Albertson’s, or the liquor store, or at the park. Some of them might be bagging your groceries.
The numbers reported are obviously low, but the question is, How low are they?
We won’t know until there’s comprehensive testing, or at least a random, scientific sample.