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Dr. Fauci Said if We Should Lock Down America

“I do not believe at this point that we do need to lock down. We have to leave that on the table.”
closed sign at a restaurant

Coronavirus cases in America have just set another record, with 153,000 new cases, and 242,000 total fatalities—meanwhile, hospitals in some cities have reached capacity, and even GOP governors are issuing mask mandates and public health measures to mitigate the spread.

As stay-at-home advisories and restaurant restrictions are issued, Americans are wondering if we're headed for another lockdown, as in the Spring. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, spoke about just that during a streaming Q&A on Friday at the 2020 Ignatius Forum, hosted by the Washington National Cathedral. Read on to hear his warning, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.

Dr. Fauci Said Public Health Measures, Not a Lock Down, Would Stop the Virus

First of all, the numbers are as bad as they sound. More people are getting sick, are hospitalized and are dying than should be. "Data speaks for itself," said Fauci. "We are in a very, very difficult situation. It's quite problematic. I have said that publicly many times, not to scare people, but to bring a reality check to where we are. If you look at it, we have 10 million infections in the United States, almost 250,000 deaths. We've had 60,000 hospitalizations. And now last count we had 143,000 infections in a single day."

That record has since been broken, with 153,000. "When I testified before the Congress four months ago, I said, if we did not get control of this, that we could reach a hundred thousand infections a day and people thought I was being hyperbolic and now look, what's happening. That's the bad news. I think the encouraging news that people need to understand that public health measures—not lock down of the country—but public health measures that are rather simple and easy to understand—the universe of wearing of mass, the physical distancing, the avoiding congregate and crowded places outdoors better than indoors washing hands. It sounds simple in the context of this ominous outbreak, but in fact, it can turn it around and that's what we really need to do."

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Dr. Fauci Declared We Do Not Need to Lock Down Now—But it's Still On the Table

The moderator inquired more about Fauci's lockdown thoughts, asking about "walking the fine line between locked down at one extreme and open activity and the other extreme. As a professional medical person, you probably err on the side of caution, but if you were President-elect, how would you balance those two priorities?"

"I believe you have to be sensitive to the stress and the strain of lockdowns, the economic and psychological consequences," said Fauci. "I do not believe at this point that we do need to lock down. We have to leave that on the table. We're not going to just push it off the table. I don't think we need to do it because my experience is that when you, as a group, as a nation implement the public health measures that I mentioned to you, we can turn this around without blocking the country down."

As for yourself, do everything you can to prevent getting—and spreading—COVID-19 in the first place, and follow Fauci's fundamentals so we don't have to lock down: Wear your face mask, get tested if you think you have coronavirus, avoid crowds (and bars, and house parties), practice social distancing, only run essential errands, wash your hands regularly, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, stay outdoors more than indoors, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.