Sounding a rare warning amid the "sun belt" coronavirus case uptick, President Donald Trump revived the coronavirus briefing Tuesday, saying the pandemic is going to get worse before it gets better.
"Some areas of our country are doing very well," Trump told reporters. "Others are doing less well. It will probably, unfortunately, get worse before it gets better – something I don't like saying about things but that's the way it is.
"My administration has been aggressively responding to case growth in the sun belt and we continue to do so, working very closely with all governors but right now in particular those governors. We are coordinating closely with hospitals and governors in the last three weeks."
Trump said the median age of fatalities in the United States is around 78 years old and the uptick in positives point to younger people with stronger immune systems being infected.
"We've learned a lot about this disease," Trump said. "The doctors have learned a lot."
Also, Trump added his administration has fixed the problem of empty cupboards.
"My administration currently has zero unfilled requests or unfulfilled requests for equipment or anything else that they need from the governors," Trump added. "No governor needs anything right now, and we think we will have it that way until the end because, frankly, we are stocked up and ready to go wherever we have to go."
The revival of the press briefing – with just Trump speaking and neither Drs. Anthony Fauci nor Deborah Birx present – comes as lawmakers and White House officials were opening negotiations on a trillion-dollar-or-more "phase four" rescue package.
"We are asking Americans to use masks, socially distance, and employ vigorous hygiene," Trump said Tuesday. "Wash your hands every chance you get while sheltering high-risk populations. We are employing young Americans to avoid packed bars and other crowded indoor gatherings. Be safe and be smart."
To help save lives and slow the increasing cases in the South, Trump announced a new testing protocol for nursing homes, which will ultimately be shared with other demographics to slow the spread of COVID-19.
"We are surging testing capacity to identify and isolate cases," Trump said, noting the U.S. has not conducted over 50 million tests. "This includes a newly improved testing platform to nursing homes across the South – being very, very vigilant with respect to nursing homes because you know all of the problems that we had with so many people, so sadly, they were infected.
"So all of the staff and residents can be routinely tested and isolated to ensure our elderly are even more strongly protected than anybody else. That's really the high-risk people, the high-risk wonderful people."
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