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Cities across the US hope to slow coronavirus cases by 'flattening the curve'

The goal is to flatten the number of infections, or lower the curve, so they don’t exceed the capacity of health care providers to deal with them.

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To prevent the spread of COVID-19, cities across the U.S. are trying to “flatten the curve.”

This is the goal of social distancing and other measures, such as canceling larger events and calling off in-person classes at universities in favor of online learning.

In cities like Pittsburgh, officials have made the case to flatten the spike of infections if and when they do come.

"If the amount of infections spike, what’s a known fact is that those resources are finite, and there’s only so many ventilators, beds and doctors," Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman said. "And we don’t want to overwhelm those systems, even in a medical community like Pittsburgh is."

The goal is to flatten the number of infections, or lower the curve, so they don’t exceed the capacity of health care providers to deal with them.

"It’s like stopping a pack of matches from lighting by separating the other half from the first three that are firing off," Fetterman said.

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