Opinion: Ga. views, experts on COVID-19

A United Airlines ticket agent at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Friday, March 13, 2020 had a slow morning as the coronavirus pandemic apparently affected travel. JOHN SPINK/JSPINK@AJC.COM
A United Airlines ticket agent at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Friday, March 13, 2020 had a slow morning as the coronavirus pandemic apparently affected travel. JOHN SPINK/JSPINK@AJC.COM

Today, we present viewpoints by experts on infectious disease and economic forecasting who write about impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Georgia’s firmly along for the ride with this nation and world as we all navigate turbulence from the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Financial markets have had a rollercoaster month, plummeting in recent days and dragging short-term economic forecasts and personal 401(k)’s along with them. Many big public events are being canceled, or rescheduled. Schools from K-12 through the university level are wrestling with when or whether to close for an extended period. Many are understandably shuttering for now in the belief that public-health prudence outweighs the downside of academic disruption.

» COMPLETE COVERAGE: Coronavirus in Georgia

It’s impossible not to be reminded of Georgia’s high-profile stature in the world as COVID-19 preparations, precautions and related effects continue to unfold. Having the world’s busiest airport and nationally important global shipping ports within our borders puts Georgia on the front lines of possible impact from coronavirus’s effects on economic activity and public health. And reminds us that the two are very tightly intertwined, as the financial markets are painfully showing us.

It’s incumbent on all of us, and especially our elected and public health officials, to be proactive and assertive in moving to contain the spread of COVID-19 in coming days and weeks. That, and frequent, honest communication with the public can help maintain the calm that is necessary for an orderly society and financial markets alike.

And that will help speed the end of this crisis and subsequent recovery that we all hope will be quick in coming.

Providing credible information in times like these is an important part of the AJC's role, and today we present viewpoints by a respected Atlanta-based economic forecaster and the director of an infectious disease center at the University of Georgia. We are also posting additional coronavirus-related opinion columns at AJC.com/opinion.

Andre Jackson, for the Editorial Board.

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We are committed to bringing you the latest on the outbreak. Follow AJC.com/coronavirus for updates, health information and helpful resources to keep you and your family safe. More opinion pieces on COVID-19 can be found at AJC.com/opinion

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