State Watch

Fauci warns states against ‘leapfrogging’ guidelines on reopening

Anthony Fauci, a key member of the White House coronavirus task force, said Thursday evening that he’s concerned some states are “leapfrogging” federal guidelines for reopening.

The White House guidelines for cities and states recommend a 14-day decline in cases and deaths before “you can even think about going to phase one” of reopening, Fauci said on CNN.

“If you follow the guidelines, there’s a continuity that’s safe, that’s prudent and that’s careful,” the nation’s top infectious disease expert said. “The concern that I have is that there are some states … who are looking at that and kind of leapfrogging over the first checkpoint.”

More than half the states have started reopening.

Fauci said pulling back restrictions too soon is a sure way to see a resurgence in cases. States with insufficient resources should think twice before scaling back social distancing measures, he added.

“You’re taking a really significant risk if you do that and you don’t have in place the absolute clear-cut capability of identifying, isolating and doing the contact tracing,” Fauci said.

Georgia was one of the states to reopen last month, which Fauci publicly advised against, criticizing Gov. Brian Kemp (R) in the process.

“Going ahead and leapfrogging into phases where you should not be, I would advise him — as a health official and as a physician — not to do that,” Fauci said April 22 at a White House press briefing.

Tags Anthony Fauci Coronavirus COVID-19 Georgia Pandemic White House coronavirus task force

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