The United States just had two straight days with record deaths caused by COVID-19. And despite the "new year" coming, you can't wish away the pandemic with a resolution—in fact, despite the rollout of a safe and effective vaccine, things are predicted to get worse. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, spoke with California Governor Gavin Newsom on Wednesday and revealed what makes COVID-19 so unique—and scary. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.
Dr. Fauci Says He's Never Seen a Virus Like This
Said Dr. Fauci: "I've never seen a virus like this and been dealing with viral outbreaks for the last 40 years—where you have such a range of involvement of seriousness from 40% of the people who get infected and have absolutely no symptoms at all, to those who have symptoms about 80% have mild to moderate symptoms that generally require staying at home for a few days, maybe sometimes a couple of weeks."
"And then you get about 20 to 25% of the people," he continued, "that's a quarter of the people who get severe enough symptoms that they may require a hospitalization intensive care intubation, and they die. Hence the 335,000 deaths that we've had so far."
This is unusual because "usually when you have a disease that is so very real, it can kill people, not just old people and not just people with underlying conditions, but now we're starting to see even some more younger, relatively healthy people can get involved." Yes, young people are dying. And people of any age are getting Post-COVID Syndrome, which causes fatigue, migraines, neurological problems, difficulty breathing and other issues that Dr. Fauci has said resembles Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, a.k.a. myalgic encephalomyelitis. It may last for life.
"And I think every one of us know someone who has gotten sick and is died from COVID-19," he said.
Dr. Fauci Says The Asymptomatic Spread is Still "a Mystery"—and a Big Reason for the Spread
Dr. Fauci bemoaned the "mystery of how you can have so many people who have no symptoms. And so many people who get seriously impacted is one of the reasons why we have a messaging difficulty, because most of the people who do well are young people. And they say, 'What do I got to worry about? My friend gets sick. They don't even know they're sick. My friend gets infected and he's in, you know, out of action for two days and then he's back.' And they don't see the people who are in the intensive care units in it—were dying. So they say to themselves, 'Why do I need to interrupt my life and interfere with the normal life when I need to get shut down?' And that's the reason why there's that, you know, in some respects, dichotomy of people that sometimes takes political connotations, like you wear a mask. If you're on this side of the group and you don't wear a mask, if you're on the other eye, the uniqueness of I've been through many, many crises for public health. I've never seen someone, not someone, some infection that has been in the middle of such divisiveness that makes public health messaging and public health implementation extremely difficult."
How to Survive This Pandemic
As for yourself, follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this surge, no matter where you live—wear a face mask, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, 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.