Report estimates price tag of the China virus: $18 trillion

by WorldTribune Staff, July 9, 2024 Contract With Our Readers

Economic losses in the Untied States due to the Covid pandemic are over $18 trillion, according to a new report.

A security person moves journalists away from the Wuhan Institute of Virology after a World Health Organization team arrived for a field visit in Wuhan in China’s Hubei province on Feb. 3, 2021. / AP /Ng Han Guan

“The COVID-19 pandemic has exacted a staggering toll on the United States, both in human lives and in economic terms. The total estimated cost of $18.007 trillion is a stark reminder of the profound impact this global health crisis has had on the nation,” said the report by the Heritage Foundation’s Nonpartisan Commission on China and COVID-19.

“By understanding and acknowledging these costs, we can lay the groundwork for holding accountable those whose negligence or overt actions exacerbated the pandemic’s severity.”

The $18 trillion figure includes more than $8.6 trillion caused by excess deaths; more than $1.825 trillion in lost income; $6 trillion due to chronic conditions; mental health losses of $1 trillion; and educational losses of $435 billion.

The pandemic was “the most disruptive and costly event of the 21st century,” the report said.

Meet Garrett Ziegler, Free Press Foundation

The report also included a timeline of the Chinese government’s actions as part of a “systematic cover-up” of the origins of COVID that began, at the latest, in December 2019, as well as its failure to take steps to contain the virus within its borders.

The report provided recommendations for Congress to consider as it looks to hold the Chinese Communist Party accountable for its role in the pandemic, which include:

• Establish a bipartisan national Covid commission to conduct “a review of China’s negligence and cover-up as well as an evaluation of domestic policies that were implemented” in response to the pandemic.

• Create a bipartisan reparations or compensation task force to cover claims against the Chinese government.

• Facilitate the filing of civil claims against the People’s Republic of China to allow civilians harmed by Covid to receive compensation by amending the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act with a provision letting civilians sue China for Covid claims.

• Decouple U.S. government and commercial supply chains from Chinese state-backed companies.

• Audit all U.S. government funding for biomedical research and related research activities in China.

“In the absence of self-accountability by China, and in view of its obstructionist role in international institutions, the Commission believes that only holding the Chinese government accountable and liable for its negligence and malfeasance can provide both China’s government and other governments with the incentives and impetus to act differently in the future,” the report said.

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