Dr. Fauci Says Herd Immunity Will 'Kill a Lot of People'
Since the start of the pandemic, the concept of "herd immunity"—intentionally infecting a good portion of the population with a virus in order to achieve mass protection against the virus—has been thrown around. However, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and key member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, has clarified his thoughts about it. During a Thursday discussion with Yahoo News Editor in Chief Daniel Klaidman and Chief Investigative Correspondent Michael Isikoff, Dr. Fauci declared that it would result in the needless deaths of too many people. Read on, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.
Why is Dr. Fauci Against Herd Immunity?
Dr. Fauci was asked about the Barrington Declaration, organized by infectious-disease experts Dr. Martin Kulldorff of Harvard University, Dr. Sunetra Gupta of Oxford University and Dr. Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford University, and signed by more than 9,000 medical and public health scientists around the globe—and reportedly endorsed by the White House. The declaration opposes lockdowns and encourages the spread of the virus amongst the less vulnerable of the population—young and healthy individuals—while protecting the elderly and vulnerable.
While Dr. Fauci agrees that "we need to protect the vulnerable" and "don't want to lock down or close down the country," herd immunity isn't the answer, he says, mostly due to the high percentage of the population with pre-existing conditions.
"If you just let anybody get in and everybody get infected, don't wear masks, let children get infected, let everybody get infected, and just protect the vulnerable—like being really careful in nursing homes and places like that—that doesn't work because in our community, there's maybe a third of the population, depending upon how you figure it, that are vulnerable and would be prone to getting serious complications from COVID-19 disease," he explained.
"It is impossible, and we've never protected those people in the community. They're not in nursing homes where you can do things in nursing homes. You have the elderly, obese people, people with underlying conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and other conditions," he continued.
Allowing this to happen would prove deadly, he feels.
"If you let infections rip, as it were and say, let everybody get infected, that's going to be able to be getting infected, and then we'll have herd immunity, quite frankly, that is nonsense," he declared. "Anybody who knows anything about epidemiology will tell you that that is nonsense and very dangerous, because what will happen is that if you do that by the time you get to herd immunity, you will have killed a lot of people that would have been avoidable."
The Herd Immunity Debate Continues
Fauci added that the people who have been touting herd immunity are not trained in infectious disease, and that "the standard people throughout the country who understand infectious diseases and understand epidemiology with the exception of the few that you know, who are talking about, they would all vehemently disagree with this idea of just letting everybody getting infected."
He also pointed out that Dr. Deborah Birx, "a very experienced infectious disease person" and Coordinator of the White House Coronavirus Task Force as well as Dr. Robert Redfield, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all agree with him. "All three of us very clearly are against that," he confirmed.
Others disagree, especially those on the Right. "If Democrats truly want to follow the science—rather than the politics—in the fight against COVID-19, they might want to take a closer look at 'The Great Barrington Declaration,'" writes Andy Puzder on FoxNews.com. "It recommends allowing people to live normally despite the virus while protecting the most vulnerable elements of the population so as to avoid the lockdowns' devastating physical, mental, economic, and educational impacts.
The mainstream media has essentially ignored the Declaration, but to date over 5,500 medical and public health scientists and 11,000 medical practitioners have signed it. Those numbers continue to grow."
As for yourself, to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.