Trump Has COVID-19. So Do Over 7 Million Americans. Don’t They All Deserve the Health Care He’s Getting?

Early on Friday morning, news broke that President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump…

Trump Has COVID-19. So Do Over 7 Million Americans. Don’t They All Deserve the Health Care He’s Getting?

Early on Friday morning, news broke that President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for COVID-19. The world erupted in chaos, with stock prices plummeting, world leaders—including Boris Johnson and Vladimir Putin—extending support, and many engaging in an open debate about how much empathy it was appropriate to extend to a politician who has built a brand on hate.

Shortly before Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis was reported on Friday, global e-commerce giant Amazon finally released data showing that the company had seen 19,816 confirmed or presumed COVID-19 cases across its frontline employees in the U.S. since March. Prior to this announcement, the multibillion-dollar company’s employees had been tracking COVID-19 cases themselves because Amazon refused to release numbers.

Amazon did offer one-time bonuses to frontline workers in June, but when you consider that the average cost to treat a patient hospitalized with COVID-19 is $30,000, it’s hard not to wonder what kind of financial toll the disease will take. Adding to the struggle for many Americans with COVID-19: the difficulty of navigating an overtaxed unemployment system in the wake of job loss or the grief of loosing a loved one while still struggling to meet basic needs.

Let’s take a look at how the average American might fare with a positive diagnosis compared to the president. 

Health Care Costs 

As the president of the United States, Trump is entitled to top-shelf health care (paid for by the American taxpayers) and access to the finest doctors in the world. 

The uninsured—about 12.5% of American adults, a number that has risen under the Trump administration—can expect to pay anywhere from $42,486 to $74,310 if they are hospitalized with COVID-19.

Income Loss and Job Security

The $400,000 in annual income that Trump earns as president is close to eight times the salary of the average American, making him well positioned to recover from the economic consequences of COVID-19. At this point in the pandemic, stock market and home prices are overall strong, helping high earners return to levels of pre-recession wealth. No one will question the president’s need to take the time he requires to recover. At least until November, he has job security.