Fauci: Full shutdown not needed if health measures are 'uniformly' implemented
Top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said Monday that he doesn't believe the U.S. needs to go into another full shutdown to control the virus if precautions are rolled out consistently.
"What we need to do is to uniformly and consistently implement the fundamental public health measures that we know -- when they are implemented by states and cities -- do have an impact," Fauci said.
He made the remarks in an interview with News 12's sister station, Cheddar.
Fauci said simple public health measures that people should follow include wearing masks, physically distancing and avoiding crowds.
He added that controlling the virus isn't an all-or-none situation.
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"You can do prudent public health measures and still continue to open up gradually the economy," he said.
Fauci said that data clearly shows states that implement measures have better control over the virus.
He also is advising Americans to stay home this holiday season.
After millions of people traveled this past weekend for Thanksgiving, Fauci is predicting another surge in coronavirus cases.
"People need to ask themselves is it really prudent to do the kind of traveling this season that you normally would have done," Fauci said.
He says he is hopeful most Americans will be able to get vaccinated soon - as early as next month for people who are high priority. The next barrier will be to get reluctant people vaccinated.
"If the overwhelming majority of the population gets vaccinated, we could achieve herd immunity," Fauci said. "I would think from a practical standpoint that likely will not occur until we get well into the second quarter - June, July and August - but it conceivably could occur by May if everyone decides they want to get vaccinated."