Fauci Says This Is What's Most "Disturbing" About Recent COVID-19 Numbers
"The next weeks will be critical in our ability to address these surgings," the NIAID director said.
Recent weeks have seen notable rises in coronavirus cases in a number of U.S. states, many of which reopened earlier than others. And on Tuesday, Anthony Fauci, MD, expressed what could be described as grave concern over these sudden spikes. Fauci addressed a House Energy and Commerce Committee along with other administration public health leaders in a high-profile hearing on Tuesday. Committee Chairman Frank Pallone asked the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to provide an "unvarnished view of where we are in our fight against COVID-19." And Fauci did not demur in his response.
He called the overall response a "mixed bag," noting the large and "very heterogeneous" country before praising the New York metropolitan area, which has been "hit extraordinarily hard" and "has done very well in bringing the cases down and using the guidelines that we have very carefully put together in a step-wise fashion to carefully reopen."
Fauci then turned to other areas of the country, where he is "seeing a disturbing surge of infections" that is due, in part, to an "increase in community spread." Though he didn't say it explicitly, those rising numbers have largely been seen in states that aggressively reopened and flouted the guidelines for reopening laid out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Fauci admitted that the number of cases going back up is "very troublesome."
He also pointed out that the "the next weeks will be critical in our ability to address these surgings that we are seeing in Florida, Texas, and Arizona and in other states"—though he added that they are "not the only ones that are having difficulty."
Watch the video below, via Fox News:
Fauci was joined before the House Energy and Commerce Committee by Robert Redfield, director of the CDC; Stephen Hahn, head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); and Brett Giroir, assistant secretary for health. And for more on the states to be concerned about, check out These States May Be "Past the Point" of Controlling COVID-19, Doctor Says.