The United States hasn’t seen the full impact that Thanksgiving gatherings likely will have on rising Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations, Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Monday.
“The blip from Thanksgiving isn’t even here yet,” Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CBS’ Norah O’Donnell during the Milken Institute Future of Health Summit.
“So we’re getting those staggering numbers of new cases and hospitalizations before we even feel the full brunt of the Thanksgiving holiday,” Fauci said. Health experts warned before the holiday that Americans should gather virtually rather than risk exposure.
As the US nears an average of 200,000 Covid-19 cases a day, experts say “behavior and cold weather” are behind the current surge gripping American communities.
“People are going indoors, they’re not minding the three W’s,” Health and Human Services secretary Alex Azar told Fox News’ Chris Wallace on Sunday. “Our advice is always the same. Wash your hands, watch your distance, wear face coverings.”
Health experts have long warned that the holiday season would bring a spike in coronavirus cases as people increasingly gather indoors. As of Sunday, the US averaged 196,233 new cases over the past week, another record high, according to a CNN analysis of data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
More than 14.9 million confirmed cases have been reported in the US since the pandemic began, and more than 283,000 people have died.
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