Note: “Social distancing” also includes a reduction in large gatherings; some school closures and working from home; and efforts to support hospitals and diagnostic testing. Based on a simulation between January and late October using an epidemic model. See for details.

President Trump says he wants the United States “raring to go” in two and a half weeks, on Easter, with “packed churches all over our country.” He and many other political conservatives suggest that we are responding to something like the flu with remedies that may be more devastating than the disease.

We created this interactive model with epidemiologists to show why quickly returning to normal could be a historic mistake that would lead to an explosion of infections, hospitalizations and deaths.