CDC director Robert Redfield said Thursday that he is “very concerned” about the agency’s public health announcements on the coronavirus not “resonating” with the public as the number of cases continues to increase across the United States.
In his testimony before the House Appropriations Committee, Redfield said he sees “many people” who do not wear masks in Washington, where he works, while many people wear masks in his hometown of Baltimore. Crowds have been spotted in recent weeks during protests during Memorial Day holidays and, Redfield noted, at the SpaceX launch on Saturday.
Large crowds gathered at Florida̵
During the hearing, House Democrats grilled Redfield on President Donald Trump’s impetus for states to reopen after being shut down as part of social distance measures to curb the spread of the virus.
All 50 states have begun reducing quarantine restrictions even though Redfield said “not all states” have met the White House criteria for resuming business.
“We will continue the message as best we can,” said Redfield, a member of the White House coronavirus working group. “We will encourage people who have the ability to wear masks when in their environment to continue doing so.”
The coronavirus, which occurred about five months ago, has killed more than 1.8 million people and killed at least 107,175 in the United States, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. While cases have subsided in hot places like the state of New York, the United States still sees about 20,000 new Covid-19 cases a day.
At the request of the rope. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., If there was any evidence that the virus had become less contagious, Redfield simply said “No.”
The hearing comes because CDC’s response to the pandemic is being examined by former officials and experts on infectious diseases. A New York Times report published on Wednesday detailed some of the CDC’s early mistakes, including the delay of the coronavirus test kits. CDC declined The New York Times requests to interview the top CDC officials, the Times says.
The CDC has largely been silent on the pandemic. Office officials have not held a coronavirus-related briefing for more than two months. Last month, the agency quietly released detailed guidance on reopening schools, mass transit and non-essential businesses that had been shut down in an effort to curb the spread of coronavirus in the U.S.
Redfield also warned Thursday that protests across the United States and other parts of the world over George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis police’s hands could be a “seeding event” for more coronavirus outbreaks.
He said he would like to see people taking part in the protests being tested for the virus in the next few days.
“Unfortunately, I think there is a potential, unfortunately, for this to be a seed event,” he said. “And the way to minimize it is to make each individual recognize it is an advantage of them to protect their loved ones, to [say] “hey, i was out, i have to be tested.”
Public health specialists warn that a slow infection through the summer can lead to a huge resurgence in the fall.
Redfield told lawmakers that the United States is likely to have a “difficult time” during the fall and winter seasons when coronavirus and influenza circulate at the same time.
In April, Redfield first warned about the colder seasons, saying, “We have to distinguish between which is influenza and which is coronavirus.”