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Dr. Fauci: Make 'Judgment Call' on Travel When Risk Evidence Lacks

Dr. Fauci: Make 'Judgment Call' on Travel When Risk Evidence Lacks
Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauci said vaccinated people might not have "actual evidence" to use when making their decisions to travel. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 10 March 2021 10:28 AM

People who wish to travel after being vaccinated must "make a judgment call" about their plans, President Joe Biden's chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Wednesday.

Fauci acknowledged vaccinated persons might not have data or "actual evidence" to use when making their decisions.  

"They're being careful, understandably," Fauci, the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said on CNN's "New Day." "They want to get science, they want to get data. And when you don't have the data and you don't have the actual evidence, you've got to make a judgment call.

"And I think that's what you're going to be seeing in the next weeks. You're going to see little by little, more and more guidelines getting people to be more and more flexible."

Fauci's comments came while advising people who want to travel for spring break to not let their guard down, and to continue to take care, even though the COVID-19 numbers are dropping and several states are moving to reopen businesses and drop mask mandates. 

"Whenever you get a situation where you’re going to have people traveling to go to a separate location, where there’s going to be a congregate setting, a festive atmosphere, it’s totally understandable that people want to do that. But that’s something that we’ve got to be very careful of,” Fauci said. "We want people to have a good time on spring break, but don't put your guard down completely. Just be prudent a bit longer. We are going in the right direction, we’re almost there.”

March marks a year since restrictions started going into place and since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic, and Fauci said there have been several important things that have been learned that were not anticipated. 

"If you had turned the clock back a year and when we had a decision of shutting down travel from Europe, which was a year ago tomorrow on the 11th of March, I never would have imagined, even though I've been through multiple outbreaks of different diseases, the thought that you would have 525,000 people in America to have died," Fauci said. "Infections in this country would have really been unimaginable. This virus is a very formidable enemy, if you want to be metaphorical about it. It's just extraordinary."

And even though the progress of the pandemic is going "much better," particularly because of the "scientific advances that allowed us to have now multiple highly efficacious vaccines, we're not out of the woods yet, even though we really want to be and we're going in that direction."

Infection numbers are coming down, but the numbers are plateauing, which is creating a "little anxiety," Fauci said. 

Further, Fauci said it's never known "for sure" if the nation is out of danger of another surge, but you can get a "good idea" when infections continue to go down and more people are getting vaccinated. 

"As we get into the spring and very early summer, you know we'll have enough vaccine to vaccinate everybody by the end of May," he said. "Once you get a substantial proportion of the population vaccinated, that is a very, very strong defense against there being another surge."

Meanwhile, the vaccines that are being used now seem to be working "quite well" against most coronavirus variants, but tests are starting for vaccines that are directed specifically against those mutations.

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People who wish to travel after being vaccinated must "make a judgment call" about their plans, President Joe Biden's chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said...
fauci, coronavirus vaccinations, covid, pandemic, travel
Wednesday, 10 March 2021 10:28 AM
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