During an interview with the Journal of the American Medical Association on Monday, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases noted that this troubling trend mirrors the “insidious” rise that the Sun Belt region witnessed last month before new cases started to surge.
Fauci advised states to reexamine where they are in the process of reopening businesses and schools.
“You may need to pause, you may need to drop back a little bit,” he said. “I don’t think you necessarily have to revert to go all the way back to reclosing.”
“Outdoor is always better than indoor if you want to do any kind of function,” Fauci said.
“It’s in our hands, as I’ve said so many times. You have the dynamics of the virus if left to its own devices is going to keep resurging. The only way to stop it is by what we do… as a countermeasure against it.”
Fauci added that he is glad to see the Trump administration at least making an effort to push the general public to wear face masks and coverings.
“I’m very pleased to see that the president is wearing a mask more now,” he said.
“The vice president, and I know I’m with him a fair amount, wears a mask when he goes out and is in a situation where masks are needed. We need more of that consistency.”
Fauci’s remarks come on the heels of Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force coordinator, warning that the United States has entered a “new phase” in the months-long fight against the pandemic. Nearly 20,000 more Americans could die in the next twenty days, according to a new composite forecast from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The U.S. has the most cases by far, with nearly 4.7 million confirmed infections and more than 156,000 deaths.
Ethen Kim Lieser is a Minneapolis-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn.