Story at a glance

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci warned more young people are suffering from severe coronavirus infections.
  • This follows a national surge in cases as states reopen and warmer weather arrives.

Speaking before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, warned that young people are not immune to the negative effects of a coronavirus infection. The warning comes as multiple states begin recording daily high reports of new cases while reopening. 

Fauci notably discussed how he has never seen a virus like COVID-19 in his experience as an infectious disease expert.

“One of the very perplexing things about COVID-19...I’ve never seen a single virus that is one pathogen have a range from 20 to 40 percent of the people have no symptoms, to some get mild symptoms, some get symptoms enough to put them at home for a few days, some are in bed for weeks and have symptoms even after they recover, others go to the hospital, some require oxygen, some require intensive care, some get intubated and some die,” he explained. 

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Fauci made a point to discuss how young people — namely in the 20 to 30 age range — need to be more cautious regarding their exposure to the virus, not just for their own health, but for the health of others they could inadvertently infect.

“What we do have is a lack of appreciation,” Fauci said. “You have a dual responsibility. You have a responsibility to yourself, because I think thinking that young people have no deleterious consequences is not true. We're seeing more and more complications in young people.”

This comes as states like Texas are seeing new cases and hospitalizations related to the coronavirus rise and blame younger people congregating.

They're not wearing face masks. They're not sanitizing their hands. They're not maintaining the safe distancing practices. And as a result, they are contracting COVID-19 at a record pace in the state of Texas,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said in an interview.  

Fauci corroborated this account, and said that while the majority of younger people infected with the coronavirus fare well, the risk of getting infected and spreading it to vulnerable people will only perpetuate the pandemic and its fatalities. 

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Published on Jun 24, 2020