America does not need to undergo another lockdown if people take measures to curb the spread of the CCP virus, a top public health official said Thursday.
“We would like to stay away from that because there is no appetite for locking down in the American public. But I believe we can do it without a lockdown,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said during a virtual appearance on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
“You don’t necessarily have to shut everything down. Hopefully, we won’t have to do that. If we can do the public health measures, we wouldn’t have to do that. The best opposite strategy to locking down is to intensify the public health measures short of locking down,”
“So if you can do that well, you don’t have to take that step that people are trying to avoid, which has so many implications, both psychologically and economically. We’d like not to do that.”
Fauci has for months exhorted Americans to wear masks, remain six feet apart from non-household members, and wash their hands frequently.
The doctor has received criticism for shifting advice, particularly on the mask issue. Officials for months said not to wear masks but in April reversed the guidance, attributing it to new information on spread of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus by people without symptoms.
The virus causes the disease COVID-19.
Fauci has also said he initially recommended the average person not wear masks because of fears that healthcare workers would run out of masks.
Fauci’s new comments came after Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center of Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, said a U.S.-wide lockdown between four and six weeks could control the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We could pay for a package right now to cover all of the wages, lost wages for individual workers for losses to small companies to medium-sized companies or city, state, county governments. We could do all of that,” Osterholm, who is advising Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, told Yahoo. “If we did that, then we could lockdown for four-to-six weeks.”
The United States entered a lockdown for several weeks in the spring, based on the advice of Fauci and other health officials.
President Donald Trump later said the country would not lock down again, citing its effect on the economy, including tens of thousands of businesses and millions of jobs lost.
Pfizer this week reported positive interim results from its phase 3 trial of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate.
Fauci told ABC “that help is really on the way.
“If you think of it metaphorically, the cavalry is coming here. Vaccines are going to have a major positive impact,” he said. “If we can just hang in there, do the public health measures that we’re talking about, we’re going to get this under control, I promise you.”
Jack Phillips contributed to this report.