Trump says US will categorize counties by risk level to 'overcome and vanquish' coronavirus

President Trump told the nation’s governors that data on the coronavirus pandemic would be examined at the county level. In a Thursday letter, Trump said that the administration is working on publishing new guidelines on how to deal with the virus so that entities at the state and local level can better combat its spread. He said that as testing capabilities expand, officials will be able to "classify counties with respect to continued risks posed by the virus." “This will incorporate robust surveillance testing, which allows us to monitor the spread of the virus throughout the country. Under these data-driven criteria, we will suggest guidelines categorizing counties as high-risk, medium-risk, or low-risk,” the letter reads.

The president said that the country’s testing capabilities improve on a daily basis, adding that with the improvements comes the ability to better track where the virus is and where it is spreading. “We mourn alongside those who have lost loved ones, and we send our prayers for the recovery of all who are still sick,” Trump said. “In their honor, we pledge to marshal every resource and power we have to overcome and vanquish this threat.”

Trump recently said he hopes the country will be reopened by Easter Sunday on April 12, but experts have expressed doubt about that short of a deadline, and many states already have restrictions in place that extend beyond that time. The United States has had more than 75,000 cases of the coronavirus and more than 1,000 deaths, according to the latest reading by the Johns Hopkins University tracker.