We once had a medical system that can competently manage epidemics. We discarded it to make room for the managed-condition healthcare system we have now. Our system has proved that it cannot tolerate an epidemic, something that history tells us is a fact of nature. As a result, when an epidemic appears, we have to stop everything until a vaccine can make it go away.
It is inevitable that there will be a point where we must abandon the hope of containing the spread through quarantines. Our best hope of minimizing the number of deaths and of those needing intensive care is to isolate the ones most at risk if they were infected. Instead of removing from the economy those who are suspected as being infectious, we instead remove those who have known preexisting conditions or age.