Sen. Patty Murray taking steps to prepare state for ‘potential second surge’ of COVID-19

Sen. Patty Murray

As people are anxious to get back to work and have things return to normal, some lawmakers say we still need to prepare for what’s ahead.

That includes the chance of a second surge of COVID-19. Senator Patty Murray says the cost of not containing the virus will be much higher than what our economy is seeing right now.

“We have to make sure we’re ready for a potential second surge,” said Murray.

She says top medical experts are still trying to understand COVID-19, including whether someone can get the virus twice, or if recovered patients are immune.

“I do know people are working extremely hard and that is a critical question moving forward,” said Murray.

With the Senate out on recess until at least May 4, Murray is already working on a second coronavirus aid package, which she says needs to include more money for rural hospitals. The senator also wants to simplify the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses.

“The need is real,” said Murray.

She also wants rapid testing available to everyone.

“Testing, and I mean rapid production of testing that is quick and is widely available and gives you results right away is really important,” said Murray.

What’s also important is knowing when our lives can return to normal. Governor Jay Inslee says if we stopped social distancing efforts today, more people would die.

“That curve is going to start to go up again, fatalities will increase again and that will be statewide,” said Murray. “It might hit Spokane first and Seattle second next time.”

Senator Murray is frustrated with the Trump administration and what she calls a lack of urgency in response to the pandemic.

RELATED: Tracking COVID-19: A breakdown of the latest numbers in Washington and Idaho

READ: ‘We will not accept unnecessary deaths’: Gov. Inslee extends stay home order through May 4

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