April 26, 2020 8:05 pm

Monday, Neil deGrasse Tyson and Dr. Irwin Redlener Explore the COVID-19 Pandemic

Note – This episode was recorded on April 23, 2020. This episode contains factual discussions of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and may contain certain topics and discussion of statistics and information that might cause distress.

To continue our coverage of the ever-evolving COVID-19 situation, on this week’s episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson sits down again with Dr. Irwin Redlener, Director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness, to discuss the current coronavirus situation.

A screen capture of the interactive COVID-19 Global Tracker Map from Microsoft Bing taken on 04/24/2020.

COVID-19 Tracker Map on 04/24/2020. Image Credit: Microsoft Corporation.

To start, we recap what constitutes something as a pandemic. Irwin tells us why the term “physical distancing” should replace “social distancing.” We discuss the value of maintaining social connections during this pandemic. Irwin provides commentary on how pandemic statistics are generated through modeling and projections. He also discusses the importance of “contact tracing.”

Find out if we should be expecting a second or third wave of the virus. You’ll learn if physical distancing has helped flatten the curve and why the rush to get businesses open is alarming. Irwin also tells us how there might be significant undercounting when it comes to reported deaths from the pandemic.

Investigate how countries around the world handled the outbreak. Irwin explains how the United States mishandled the early steps during this crisis. Irwin also explores why the “blame” discussion is more complicated than you might imagine.

Lastly, you’ll hear how policy evolves throughout a crisis and how the public should react to the constant flipflopping of messaging. All that, plus, Irwin leaves us with a message of hope for the future.

Please join us tomorrow for COVID-19 Update, with Neil deGrasse Tyson at 3pm ET right here on our website, as well as on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. If you’re a StarTalk+ Patron or an All-Access subscriber, you can watch or listen to this episode ad-free at 3pm, too.

That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!
-Ian Mullen

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