Coronavirus cases are going down. "As of yesterday, the seven day daily average of cases was about 75,500 cases per day, which represents a decrease of about 16% over the prior week. The seven day average of hospital admissions was about 6,000 per day, also a decrease of about 11% from the prior week. And the seven day average of daily deaths were about 1,200 per day. A decrease of about 3% from the previous week throughout the pandemic," said Rochelle Walensky, the head of the CDC, this morning. So what's the bad news? Cases still aren't low enough. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, appeared with Walensky. Read on for five life-saving pieces of advice from today's conference—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.
Dr. Fauci Warned Kids Can Get and Spread Delta More Than Previous Strains
"Months ago it was felt, based on the data with Alpha predominantly, that children do not get infected as much. And if they do, they don't spread the infection in the home setting." But that has changed. "A recent paper just came out that actually showed on the contrary in the era of Delta children get infected as readily as adults do, and they transmit the infection as readily as the adults do. We may not appreciate that because about 50% of the infections in children are asymptomatic. So" regarding "herd immunity, if we can get the overwhelming majority of those 28 million children vaccinated, I think that would play a major role in diminishing the spread of infection in the community…..That's one of the reasons why we want to do as best as we can to get those children from five to 11 vaccinated." Vaccines for that age range are expected to be approved by early November.
CDC Chief Warns Don't Become "Complacent"
"We're really encouraged as we watch the COVID-19 cases come down from this Delta surge in this very moment," said Walensky, "but we all know that respiratory viruses and not just" COVID "but RSV, influenza, other coronaviruses tend to thrive in winter months and colder weather. So right now is not the time as cases are coming down to become complacent because we do know colder weather is ahead of us, and we need to do all that we can, including vaccinating those 66 million people who have not yet been vaccinated—all we can in our prevention measures in our vaccination efforts to make sure that we don't become complacent."
Dr. Fauci Showed That Vaccines Do Work
Dr. Fauci showed data that proved vaccines help slow or stop disease. "If you look at the estimated annual deaths globally for diseases that are vaccine preventable, you look at what can happen when people, and in this case, it's almost exclusively, not vaccine hesitancy, but vaccine lack of availability in certain regions of the world—look how many people, mostly children, who die of vaccine preventable diseases," he said. "If they would have been vaccinated. 1.2 million for pneumococcus, over a half a million for hepatitis B and down the line….And remember these are vaccines that could have prevented and death, but would not accessible to these individuals. And so if we look at where we are right now, as you've heard about 6.6, 7 billion people have received COVID-19 in the United States…we have 66 million people in the U.S. who are eligible for vaccine and not yet vaccinated. … It is not too late. So please, please get vaccinated."
Surgeon General Says Vaccine Your Children Please
Surgeon General Vivek Murthy was also at the conference. "It would the most important thing for us to do with the vaccination ever with kids is say, keep our focus on the health of children. This is about public health. It's not about politics. And for many, many years that we have used vaccines is a very powerful tool to save lives, to keep our children healthy to make schools safer places. We may have the opportunity to do here based on the FDA and CDC ultimate recommendation. So what we've got to do, and we will, we've laid out the plans for here are to make sure that the people who are carrying this message are in fact, scientists and doctors and public health experts. These are the folks we know parents want to hear from, and we're working hard to make sure that they get accurate information from voices they trust, because this again, is about our kids and our health and their health."
How to Stay Safe Out There
Follow the public health fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.