There are now more than 13k COVID-19 cases outside China. The number of cases has been doubling roughly every three days. If this growth rate continues unchecked, there will be 1.7 million cases outside China in about 3 weeks.
For some countries, this will be disastrous. Perhaps they don’t have the medical infrastructure to deal with a pandemic. Or they don’t have the political will to do what’s necessary, which is test and quarantine. Or they don’t have the cultural attitude (for lack of a better term) to self-quarantine (“rules don’t apply to me!”).
It remains to be seen how this will be handled in the US, but so far, we aren’t doing nearly enough testing and time is of the essence. We will lose any hope of early containment very soon.