First few Article Sentences
When it comes to disasters of any sort, there is an invisible line between could and did. Health care in the United States, and hospitals in particular, have straddled this line since March 2020, wondering if and when the next surge will arrive. The length of time a society chooses to ponder within this spectrum yields unknown results, the magnitude of which seemingly expands each day during the 17-month global pandemic commonly known as COVID-19 or just COVID. Even with variants abound, medical science has a firm grasp on COVID’s worst-case scenario, which is somewhere between a 1-2 percent mortality rate. This number, however, fluctuates dramatically in certain categories such as age, general health, and vaccination. In comparison to the leading cause of death in the United States years before COVID, diseases of the heart and malignant neoplasms were responsible for about 45% of the 2.7 million who died annually. COVID cannot compete.