Eric Toner, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, believes that Americans will be wearing masks for “several years.”
Toner has been preparing for an outbreak like this as part of his job for years. According to Fox News, Johns Hopkins “practices virus simulations as part of is preparedness protocol, with the goal of offering public health experts and policymakers a blueprint of what to do in a pandemic.”
Toner and a team of researchers launched a coronavirus pandemic simulation in New York in October 2019. They ran through scenarios on how people would react to the threat. It was found that face coverings are a necessary defense to stop the virus from spreading.
“There’s going to be no summertime lull with a big wave in the fall,” he said on CNET’s Hacking the Apocalypse series. “It’s clear that we are having a significant resurgence of cases in the summer, and they’ll get bigger. And it’ll keep going until we lock things down again.”
According to CNET, simulating a pandemic is a “far cry” from watching the world actually deal with a real pandemic.
“The US response has been extraordinarily disappointing and wrongheaded,” he told CNET at the end of June. “Whenever there’s been an opportunity to do the right thing, we seem to have done the wrong thing. The US has to recognize that it is competing for first or second position of the worst affected country in the world.”
Toner said that until there is a vaccine, our best defense is through distancing and masks.