Dr. Fauci Says This Is When You Can Attend a Big Game Again
A return to big stadium sporting events may be coming sooner than you think.
The beginning of the coronavirus pandemic brought many activities we love to a screeching halt. And while clever workarounds like virtual happy hours and Zoom dinner dates have stepped in to fill some of the gaps, there are certain things—like the thrill of live sporting events in stadiums or arenas—that can't be recreated. But now, there's some good news, sports fans: Anthony Fauci, MD, has said that the release of a coronavirus vaccine means we'll likely be able to attend a big game before next fall. Read on for more of Facui's insight on that, and for another big COVID revelation, check out If You Have One of These Blood Types, You May Be Safe From COVID.
In a Nov. 30 interview with Yahoo! Sports, Fauci opened up about the challenges currently facing professional sports both from the perspective of fans as well as the players and teams dealing with risks and outbreaks. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) director admitted it was unlikely the NBA would be able to bring in fans for the beginning of their new season over the winter. However, he said, arenas might start filling up again later next year—but only if vaccination rollout goes as planned.
"By the time you get [the vaccine] to the general public, the people who'll be going to the basketball games, who don't have any underlying conditions, that's gonna be starting the end of April, May, June," Fauci told Yahoo! Sports. "So it probably will be well into the end of the summer before you can really feel comfortable [with full sports stadiums]—if a lot of people get vaccinated. I don't think we're going to be that normal in July. I think it probably would be by the end of the summer."
Fauci was even hopeful that sports fans could come back in full capacity to stadiums come next season's NFL kickoff in September of 2021. "I think that's possible," he said.
But until a good portion of the population gets vaccinated, there are still plenty of places Fauci won't set foot. Read on to see where the top health expert is avoiding these days, and for more important updates, check out This Type of Face Mask Isn't Protecting You From COVID, WHO Warns.
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"Bars are really problematic. I have to tell you, if you look at some of the outbreaks that we've seen, it's when people go into bars, crowded bars," Fauci said in a Nov. 18 interview with The New York Times. "I used to like to sit at a bar and grab a hamburger and a beer. But when you're at a bar, people are leaning over your shoulder to get a drink, people next to each other like this. It's kind of fun because it's social, but it's not fun when this virus is in the air. So I would think that if there's anything you want to clamp down on for the time being, it's bars." And for more on this, check out These 2 Places Could Be Closing Soon, White House Official Warns.
"It depends on your individual circumstances. If you are someone who is in the highest risk category, as best as possible, don't travel anywhere," Fauci said when asked his thoughts on taking public transportation. "If you go someplace, you have a car, you're in your car by yourself, not getting on a crowded subway, not getting on a crowded bus." And for more risky places to avoid, beware that You're 16 Times More Likely to Get COVID If You're Going Here.
"If we're in the hot zone the way we are now, where there's so many infections around, I would feel quite uncomfortable even being in a restaurant. And particularly if it was at full capacity," Fauci told The Times. And for more regular COVID updates, sign up for our daily newsletter.
Fauci clarified that someone who's as old as he is, at the age of 79, should avoid "flying in an airplane." But it's a different case for young people: "If you're a 25-year-old who has no underlying conditions, that's much different," he explained. And for more on why being in some of these places is so dangerous, check out It Only Takes This Long to Get COVID in a Room With Someone Who Has It.