Dr. Anthony Fauci told the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Tuesday that Americans should avoid going into crowds — but if they must, wear a mask.
Simply put, Fauci said, “Plan A: Don’t go in a crowd. Plan B: If you do, make sure you wear a mask.”
America’s top infectious disease expert said that with coronavirus still actively spreading across the country, “You should not congregate in crowds. You should keep distance.”
For those who do go against public health guidance of avoiding crowds, Fauci urged, “Please wear a mask. And as you wear a mask, and you’re in a situation where you’re getting animated in a demonstration or in a rally or wherever you are, avoid — as best as possible — the urge to pull your mask down and shout.”
Addressing the younger generation earlier in the hearing, Fauci said, “If you get infected and spread the infection — even though you do not get sick — you are part of the process of the dynamics of an outbreak. And what you might be propagating, inadvertently — perhaps innocently — is infecting someone who then infects someone, who then is someone who’s vulnerable.”
Some background: Fauci’s comments come as officials in states across the South are warning that more young people are testing positive for coronavirus.
The shifts in demographics have been recorded in parts of Florida, South Carolina, Georgia, Texas and other states — many of which were some of the first to reopen.
And while some officials have pointed to more widespread testing being done, others say the new cases stem from Americans failing to social distance.
Young people are more likely to have milder outcomes from coronavirus, but they can still infect others who are more at risk.
“With younger age of recent infections in at least some places such as Florida, expect a lower death rate in this wave … until the 20-40 year olds who are infected today go on to infect others,” Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said on Twitter.