Yesterday I posted a simulation, which I took off when I realized that most people are unable to calculate a percentage, that is, they do not "see" that 65 million is less than 1% of eight billion. I believe that the lack of numerical culture is one of the reasons why you are panicking.
But let's go on.
Apparently, the real problem of the coronavirus is that of "slowing it down", because if it explodes, or if it proceeds with a growth coefficient of 2.5, the health care would not have enough strength to help everyone.
So, all the extreme measures (for now the red areas, then you will come to a curfew and soon the shootings on the street with martial law) simply serve to prevent the consequences of a disastrous health policy of the past years from surfacing.
So, if the problem were to cure the sick and that's it, a completely privatized system with a little state support for the poor would be enough. Why then have European countries built immense welfare and massive (and expensive?) Health systems. The answer is that applying systematically and on a large scale prophylactic measures, combined with the economy of scale, allows the state to act also against epidemic events.
The first modern health system was born in England, and it is no coincidence that it was born after a catastrophic epidemic.
The main purpose of a public health system is to have the means to deal with epidemic events. For normal administration, a private system is more than enough.
Here we are at the point: we are at the point where we are blocking entire economies, devastating the social fabric and causing millions of people to live in panic, simply to hide THE CATASTROPHIC FAILURE of the health policy of the last decades.
You don't need the call of a resuscitator to know what the problem is: there are not enough beds, despite the fact that the Italian health system (like others in Europe) deals with majestic quantities of people. (At this point the doubt comes, I wonder if the ministry's data are correct. You cannot claim that the health system is capable of handling 20 million hospitalized every year, and then get out of it that with tens of thousands of infected you are collapsing. The accounts don't come back).
First of all, it took almost a month to get ready. The virus exploded in China a month before the emergency came here. What was done in that month? Um.
The second point is: why are there no resources? Well, cut it out. A progressive dismantling of health care, which led to a semi-private regime (especially in the north, including Emilia), dismantling which reduced services to ordinary administration.
But reducing health care to ordinary administration means being unprepared for ANY epidemic. On the other hand, no private individual (for efficiency reasons) will ever stock materials and equipment for an eventual epidemic. Even worse, no private individual will ever hire more staff than they need.
Let me be clear: we are lucky. Because if it were Ebola, the same shortage of people and equipment would have killed millions of people already. Coronavirus, after all, is a first world catastrophe.
Where are the "liberals" today complaining about the waste of public hospitals used only at 10%, with fifteen nurses for every two patients? They called it waste. But today would be a blessing.
It would be time for someone to ask the "real" question ": what is public health for?"
If by chance the answer is that it should protect the population from epidemics, then yes: there must be fifteen nurses per patient in "non-epidemic" times. That will be one in three, maybe ten patients during the epidemic. And no, it's not a waste.
After all, think of the armed forces: they are always in the barracks, except when there is a hand to be held. That doesn't happen often, but it does. So if we were to follow a private logic, we shouldn't have armed forces. But we have them, just in case .
So the point is simple: just in case .
I repeat: what is the health system for? If the answer is to face epidemics, private individuals ARE USELESS . Because the private individual will NEVER hire more staff than they need in ordinary administration, because the private individual will NEVER keep more equipment in stock than they need.
This is the point you don't want to say. What should not be discussed. And I know very well what will happen now: the nations that had a health system LESS destroyed by FASHION than privatization in health care will do better, the others worse. (I still wait to see the mythological American system coping with the epidemic. At present I am not even able to detect it before the death toll arrives.)
Obviously in Lombardy they are about to collapse, for lack of doctors. The history of red areas actually HELPS to spread the contagion, because as soon as there is doubt that an area becomes "red", people run away. It is happening with the southerners: as soon as the newspapers said that the government was considering extending the red zone, they fled. Result: the epidemic has arrived, in massive quantities, in the south. And registering them is of NO use: when an infected person made Milan-Messina, he crossed paths with those who went up to Florence and went down to Rome and Naples. Who contracted the virus on the train, but will NOT be surveyed, because they DO NOT come from a red area. Do you need a sketch?
Did this solve the Lombard health problem? Absolutely not: plundered by years of privatization, which have created efficient companies for the traffic figures of the normal administration, they are completely unprepared for an epidemic. After all, in a business logic, nobody takes 15, 20 times the staff they normally serve.
Moreover, in the absence of an economy of scale, if it were given as a condition for the convention (between the state and private individuals) that the private individual must be able to resist an epidemic, prices would rise to such an extent that the costs of public health they would seem heavenly. And you would stop complaining about the waste (which, however, nobody really controls inside private companies: it is assumed that "the invisible hand of the market" thinks about it).
Much of this panic, in addition to keeping moribund governments on its feet, also serves to deflect a debate that would be a duty today: because public health is unable to stop an epidemic, SINCE THE REASON FOR WHAT EXIST?
And the answer is: "superfluous" hospitals have been closed, that is, those that today could offer the necessary beds, and the doctors who would serve today were fired (or retired without replacements). Waste has been cut, that is, purchases that are disproportionate to normal use (that is, all the equipment you would now need), and today the showdown.
Of course, it doesn't always come.
But with the mortality figures we know, a relatively old nation like Italy risks two and a half million deaths, all in the elderly, with a prevalence of women.
So, you cut the "waste". You said that the private sector "is more efficient". Well.
Now where are your "PRIVATE?"
Where's their proverbial efficiency, now what's the use? (I challenge you to find a single proverb that talks about the efficiency of private individuals, but I don't know why it is necessary to put "proverbial" in front of the efficiency of private individuals. In my opinion "mythological" fits better). Where is their incredible elasticity, against the gray bureaucracy of the state, now that you literally hang on the lips of ministers?
The idea of privatizing health care and making it efficient for ordinary administration was a bad idea. Today the problem is there for all to see.
Instead of terrorizing the population hoping that you don't think about it, it is time to realize something. They are all at home. They have time to think. They are connected to the internet.
And sooner or later, someone will tell them that
PRIVATE HEALTH IS A CRAZY CAGATA.
And we still don't know how long the death toll in the US can still be hidden. Given their "level of preparation", when the truth blows up in Trump's face, there will be laughter.
Because nothing helps Sanders, like millions of people asking for public health during an epidemic.
But we will see this. For now, it would be a good idea to reflect on this for a moment in Europe: in the health sector, private individuals only save on "sunny days". On rainy days, when the epidemic arrives, the price is so high as to eat all past savings.
When it ends, in about 18 months, you will have a devastated economy and two million dead. And then you will wonder if the private "savings" have really served you so much.