Dr. Fauci reports that the next couple of weeks will be critical in our ability to address those surges as COVID infections grow to 2.3 million in the U.S.
As states reopen, almost half of the states have seen an uptick in cases. The U.S. now has more than 2.3 million infections and more than 120,000 deaths. As these cases grow, Dr. Anthony Fauci —the nation's leading authority on COVID-19— said, "We're now seeing a disturbing surge of infections."
Dr. Fauci is especially concerned about community spread as more people grow compliant. In a Capitol Hill meeting on Tuesday, he said, "The next couple of weeks are going to be critical in our ability to address those surges that we're seeing in Florida, in Texas, in Arizona, and in other states."
In Texas, the number of coronavirus cases has almost tripled, and hospitals are reaching their available capacity of ICU beds. There were an alarming 5,489 new COVID cases in a single day yesterday.
Fauci's appropriate and grim tone is contrary to President Trump's comments that the virus is "fading" and "dying out." President Trump has been focused on restarting the economy; yesterday, he tweeted that "testing is a double edge sword. One way, it shows you have cases, and in another way, you find out where the cases are, and you do a good job." While the internet has exploded in disbelief over Trump's tweet to slow down testing, White House officials say that the comment was only a "jest."
Replying to a question regarding Trump's remark, Dr. Fauci said, "To my knowledge, none of us have ever been told to slow down on testing. That just is a fact. In fact, we will be doing more testing, as you've heard from Admiral Giroir —not only testing to specifically identify people in the identified isolated contact trace, but also much more surveillance, if you want to get your arms around and understand exactly what's going on in the community spread. So it's the opposite, we're going to be doing more testing, not less."
Furthermore, Fauci congratulated New York's effort to mitigate the virus following the task force's guidelines. The New York metropolitan area, especially New York City (NYC), was the country's largest epicenter of the coronavirus only a few months ago. On Monday, NYC entered phase 2 of reopening, with outdoor dining becoming available.
We are taking "financial risks - not risks to safety, not a risk to the integrity of the science- but financial risks to be able to be ahead of the game," Fauci said about the government's efforts to research, diagnose, treat, and develop a vaccine for the virus.
Because of its asymptomatic nature, we need to expand surveillance by contact tracing and more frequent testing. Now is not the time to grow compliant or slow down these tactics.
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