Story at a glance
- “Specifically, I’m addressing the younger members of our society, the millennials and the Generation Zs. I ask those that are listening spread the word,” Redfield said Tuesday.
- Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, also implored all Americans to embrace wearing a face covering.
- Senate Health Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) also urged Americans to stop politicizing the use of masks, adding it would help if President Trump followed suit and wore one himself.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield at a congressional hearing Tuesday made a plea for people, especially young Americans, to wear masks to help stop the spread of the coronavirus as cases surge across many parts of the country.
Redfield said during the hearing on the virus that it is critical Americans take personal responsibility to slow the transmission of COVID-19 and embrace the use of face coverings.
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“Specifically, I’m addressing the younger members of our society, the millennials and the Generation Zs. I ask those that are listening to spread the word,” Redfield told the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee during the hearing on the pandemic.
Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, also implored all Americans to embrace wearing a face covering.
“We are all in this together,” Fauci said, adding, “We recommend masks for everyone on the outside, anyone who comes into contact in a crowded area. You should avoid crowds where possible and when you’re outside and not have the capability of maintaining distance, you should wear a mask at all times.”
Last week, Redfield warned that younger people are making up a growing number of coronavirus cases across the country, as young people may not be taking the risk of the virus spread as seriously as they should and are not adhering to guidance on social distancing and masks.
Meanwhile, a Goldman Sachs study released Tuesday claimed a federal mandate to wear masks would slow the spread of the virus enough to save the economy from losing 5 percent of its value.
“We argue that a national face mask mandate could partially substitute for renewed lockdowns,” Goldman Sachs analysts Jann Hatzius, Daan Struyven and Isabelle Rosenberg wrote in their study.
Senate Health Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) also urged Americans to stop politicizing the use of masks, adding it would help if President Trump followed suit and wore one himself.
“Unfortunately this simple life saving practice has become part of a political debate that says: If you’re for Trump, you don’t wear a mask. If you’re against Trump, you do,” Alexander said during the hearing.
The CDC recommends the use of masks or cloth facial coverings when it is not possible to stay at least 6 feet away from others. Studies have shown the use of face coverings can slow the spread of COVID-19 because it helps prevent coronavirus carriers who do not know they have the disease — because they’re not showing symptoms — from spreading it to others.
On Tuesday, Fauci also issued a stark warning to lawmakers, telling them he would not be surprised if the U.S. sees new cases of coronavirus rising to a level of 100,000 a day.
“We are now having 40-plus thousand new cases a day. I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day if this does not turn around and so I am very concerned,” Fauci said.
At least 17 states have paused or rolled back their reopening plans in response to the spike in new infections.
The U.S. has tallied more than 2.6 million coronavirus cases with more than 126,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
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