Story at a glance

  • Anthony Fauci recently expressed discomfort with the continued rising of new coronavirus cases in the U.S.
  • Currently, at least 19 states are seeing average daily increases.

With COVID-19 cases springing in the Midwest, Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, said on Thursday that he is “not comfortable” with the level of coronavirus cases in the U.S. as fall approaches.

Public health experts have made similar sentiments as colder weather brings influenza, which when combined with the continuous COVID-19 outbreak, threatens to overwhelm the health care apparatus.

Fauci told MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell that the U.S. is reporting about 40,000 new coronavirus cases daily, which may accelerate as activities are forced indoors by colder weather. 


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He also noted discrepancies in outbreaks in different locations across the country. 

“In certain regions of the country, like the Midwest the Northwest, and even now we’re starting to see a little difficulty in the northeast in New York,” Fauci explained. “Then you get concerned because it is more difficult to deal with respiratory borne virus, as people begin to go indoors more. And if you start seeing upticks, the way we’re seeing it, and you have a baseline that’s 40,000 and stuck at 40,000, that’s not the optimal position to be in as you enter into the fall and winter.”

Public health messaging has encouraged people to receive flu vaccines to preempt strong immunity to the influenza virus since COVID-19 has no authorized vaccine, and is still transmitting rapidly. 

CNBC reports that over the past week, the country saw an 8 percent increase in new cases, averaging about 45,200 daily cases when compared to week-ago data, reporting a weekly average of about 41,900 new daily cases. 

Cases are increasing in at least 19 states, according to a New York Times analysis, including North and South Dakotas, Iowa, and Hawaii. 

Fauci’s comments contradict President Trump’s recent Facebook post saying the flu is more dangerous than the coronavirus. Social media sites took down or restricted access to this post, deeming it misinformation. 

Fauci did confirm that while the influenza is serious, COVID-19 “is far more serious,” advising the continued usage of face masks and social distancing.

“The only thing I can do is repeat what I repeat, maybe 20, 30 times a day,” he said. “That in order to avoid the acquisition and transmission of this virus, which is highly transmissible, you should have uniform wearing of masks, you should have physical distancing, you should avoid crowds, you should try and do things outdoors much more than indoors, and you should frequently wash your hands and to me that goes for any situation without exception.”


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Published on Oct 08, 2020