CORONA CRISIS: Immunity Attempt Would Lead To “Major Death Toll,” Says Fauci

WASHINGTON — Allowing the Coronavirus run its course and body’s natural immune system to do its job would lead to a “major death toll,” White House Coronavirus task force head Anthony Fauci said Friday.

“If everyone contracted it, even with the relatively high percentage of people without symptoms, a lot of people are going to die,” Fauci said during a live Instagram interview with actor Matthew McConaughey.

“If everyone contracted it, even with the relatively high percentage of people without symptoms, a lot of people are going to die,” Fauci said.
“You look at the United States of America with our epidemic of obesity as it were. With the number of people with hypertension. With the number of people with diabetes. If everyone got infected, the death toll would be enormous and totally unacceptable. And that’s the reason why we are against saying: ‘Let it fly. Let everyone get infected and we’ll be fine.’ That’s a bad idea.

Meanwhile, during an interview for the National Geographic program “Stopping Pandemics,” Fauci balked at Russia’s claims to have developed a vaccine to combat the virus.

“I hope that the Russians have actually definitively proven that the vaccine is safe and effective,” Fauci said. “I seriously doubt that they’ve done that.

According to a U.S. Government Accountability Office report, “herd immunity” can happen once a large part of a population—say 70-90%—develops immunity to a disease. This generally happens by infection (conferring natural immunity) or vaccination.”

National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci attends a meeting with President Donald Trump and pharmaceutical executives on the coronavirus in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Monday, March 2, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

POTUS PULLS OUT: Trump Withdraws US From World Health Organization Over Covid Concerns

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday announced the United States will end its relationship with the World Health Organization effective Friday, accusing the organization of caving to pressure from China and criticizing its handling of the Coronavirus pandemic.

“The world needs answers from China on the virus,” Trump said in a statement at the White House. “We must have transparency.”

“We have detailed the reforms that it must make and engaged with them directly, but they have refused to act,” he said. “Because they have failed to make the requested and greatly needed reforms, we will be today terminating our relationship with the World Health Organization and redirecting those funds to other worldwide and deserving urgent global public health needs.”

In previous remarks Trump said that China had not properly reported information it had about the Covid-19 virus to the World Health Organization and said China had pressured the WHO to “mislead the world.”

“Chinese officials ignored their reporting obligations to the World Health Organization and pressured the World Health Organization to mislead the world when the virus was first discovered by Chinese authorities,” Trump said. “Countless lives have been taken and profound economic hardship has been inflicted all around the globe.”

The president’s decision to withdraw the United States from the World Health Organization was met with criticism from both the left and right.

“To call Trump’s response to COVID chaotic & incoherent doesn’t do it justice. This won’t protect American lives or interests — it leaves Americans sick & America alone,” Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, tweeted after the president’s announcement.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who heads the American Medical Association’s chamber’s health committee, warned Trump “in the strongest possible terms” to reverse the decision.

“I disagree with the president’s decision,” Alexander said in a released statement. “Certainly there needs to be a good, hard look at mistakes the World Health Organization might have made in connection with Coronavirus, but the time to do that is after the crisis has been dealt with, not in the middle of it. Withdrawing U.S. membership could, among other things, interfere with clinical trials that are essential to the development of vaccines, which citizens of the United States as well as others in the world need. And withdrawing could make it harder to work with other countries to stop viruses before they get to the United States.”

Many conservatives, however, praised the president’s decision, calling out the organization not only for its treatment of China but also its record of support for pro-abortion organizations.

“I am proud that our country will no longer be sending taxpayer dollars to support this radical regime,” said Allan Parker, president of The Justice Foundation, a pro-life legal group. “True, life-saving health measures can be funded through other organzations without an abortion agenda.”

SECOND WAVE? US ‘Not Going In The Right Direction’ In War Against Coronavirus, Says Fauci

WASHINGTON– The United States is heading in the wrong direction when it comes to combating the Coronavirus pandemic, says National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director Anthony Fauci.

In an interview with Howard Bauchner, editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Medical Association, Fauci said he is becoming “increasingly alarmed” with the number of Covid cases in the U.S..

“I think it’s pretty obvious, Howard, that we are not going in the right direction,” Fauci said. “We need to realize that if we do not adhere to the guidelines as we’re trying to open, and I don’t mean officially, I mean the citizenry, the people that are out there, we’re going to be in some serious difficulty.”

Noting the recent surge in cases in states such as Arizona, California, Florida and Texas, four states that have accounted for about half the new cases in the country this year, Fauci warned: “The whole enterprise could be at risk.”

As school districts nation wide make plans to reopen their doors this fall, Fauci said education officials must be optimistic, but cautious.

“When you look at schools, there really is a delicate balance there, because obviously if you have massive, massive outbreaks where you have an exponential elevation of a curve of new infections in a particular area, you really don’t want to have the kids go to school there. But we really need to be much more flexible in what we can do to get the children back to school,” he said. “A fundamental principle is, within the realm of some prudent evaluation of the safety to the children and the impact on the community, we should try as best as possible to get the kids back to school.”

“In certain circumstances where you get them back but there are still viral dynamics in the community, there are a lot of creative ways that superintendents of schools are thinking seriously about how you can mitigate the possibility of there being children being the vehicles of spread: Alternating days of classes, morning versus afternoon, the wearing of masks for children who are old enough to understand what it means to wear a mask, having capabilities of online for children who have underlying conditions that might put them at risk, protecting the teachers,” he said. “The principle should be, how can we prudently, with sensitivity to the safety of the kids, get the children back to school?”

Fauci’s comments come just one day after health officials confirmed more than 50,000 new cases of coronavirus in a single 24-hour period.

PANETTA HITS TRUMP: Former Defense Secretary Claims POTUS Has Gone ‘AWOL’ Over Corona Crisis

WASHINGTON– Former President Barack Obama’s Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Thursday attacked President Donald Trump over his administration’s handling of the Coronavirus pandemic.

“This is a major crisis,” Panetta told Anderson Cooper 360 on CNN, noting infectious diseases expert Anthony Fauci’s recent warning that America may soon hit 100,000 new cases a day.

“But the president, rather than bringing together some kind of national strategy to confront this crisis, simply resorts to tweeting about vandalism and other things to kind of divert attention from the crisis that’s there.”

“We have a president that is not willing to stand up and do what is necessary in order to lead this country during time of major crisis,” said Panetta. “I have never experienced a president who has avoided that responsibility.”

Panetta then went on to echo presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s slam at Trump’s handling of the pandemic, saying “It seems like our wartime president has surrendered and waved the white flag, and left the battlefield.”

According to a report published by Johns Hopkins University, the Coronavirus has infected more than 2.6m Americans and killed 128,000.

When questioned Wednesday about the president’s recent efforts to combat the virus, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, said: “The president is not focused on talking; he’s focused on action. And this administration has taken historic action with regard to the coronavirus.

“We have an excess amount of PPE, surge – a huge amount of ventilators in the stockpile. Things that could never be done, we were told, have been done under this administration. Testing more than 600,000 a day. This president has done a historic job with regard to coronavirus.”

‘RIGGED!’: Trump Warns 2020 Election Will Be ‘Most Corrupt Ever’

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is warning that Democrats are aiming to “rig” the 2020 election and will stop at nothing to do it.

Speaking at a Students for Trump rally Tuesday night, the president said democrats will make this autumn’s presidential election “the most corrupt ever,” and stepped up his attack on mail-in ballots.

“No, mail-in ballots is a disaster for our country. It’s going to end up in a big — you know. Look, just — just forget about all of this stuff,” Trump said to a crowd of students at the Dream City Church in Phoenix, most of whom were not wearing masks.

“Forget about speeches and teleprompters and all of that. They send out millions of ballots. Who’s getting them? How are they delivered? Who’s not getting them? Think of it. It’s going to be fraud all over the place. And if you look right now — if you look right now, look at all of the disputes they’re having on mail-in ballots….With mail-in ballots, you introduce something in the middle of an election year, and you have something where it’s very complex — you have no time to fix this very complex process,” he continued. “It’s very complex. This will be, in my opinion, the most corrupt election in the history of our country. And we cannot let this happen. They want it to happen so badly.”

Accusing Democrats of “sending tens of millions of ballots using the China virus as the excuse for allowing people not to go to the polls,” the president said we can not allow the Coronavirus to stop Americans from voting on election day.

“People went to the polls and voted during WWI, They went to the polls and voted during WWII. We can safely go to the polls and vote during COVID-19,” he said.

‘OVERFLOWING WITH BODIES’: New York hospitals struggle to keep up as Coronavirus battle rages on

NEW YORK (AP) — It has become a grim ritual outside New York City’s hospitals: workers in protective gear loading the bodies of coronavirus victims into refrigerated trailers.

A surge in deaths in the epicenter of the crisis in the U.S. has overwhelmed the city’s permanent morgues and filled storage spaces in many hospitals to capacity. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is sending 85 refrigerated trucks to serve as temporary morgues, the city said.

It’s been that way for days at Brooklyn Hospital Center, where a worker Tuesday wheeled out a gurney carrying a body covered in white plastic, a forklift operator carefully raised a body into the trailer and undertakers came to claim the remains of yet another of the city’s nearly 1,000 Coronavirus dead.

The hospital said in a statement that the “unprecedented crisis calls for extraordinary measures” and that extra storage is needed “to accommodate the tragic spike in deaths, placing a strain on the entire system of care — from hospitals to funeral homes.”

“Grieving families cannot quickly make arrangements, and their loved ones who have passed are remaining in hospitals longer, thus the need for this accommodation,” the hospital in Brooklyn’s Fort Greene neighborhood said.

The city’s medical examiner’s office has also started operating a makeshift morgue, as it did after the Sept. 11 attacks, to provide emergency capacity as the city’s permanent facilities fill up.

The city’s coronavirus death toll more than doubled in the past four days, surging from 450 on Friday to 932 as of Tuesday morning.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. But for others, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, the virus can cause severe symptoms like pneumonia and can be fatal.

The city and FEMA have delivered refrigerated trucks to various hospitals, while the Office of Chief Medical Examiner has been guiding them on how to properly move and store bodies, officials said.

“To see the scenes of trailers out there and what they’re doing with those trailers — they’re freezers, and nobody can even believe it,” President Donald Trump said Tuesday.

At some hospitals, like Lenox Hill in Manhattan, the trailers are being parked on city streets, along sidewalks and in front of apartments. Cars and buses passed by as bodies were loaded Tuesday outside Brooklyn Hospital Center.

Cellphone videos posted on social media over the weekend drew attention to hospitals using trailers to store bodies. An image from one video of the activity outside Brooklyn Hospital Center appeared on the front page of Tuesday’s New York Post.

“It’s hard to believe this, but this is for real,” said the man shooting the video, his voice quaking. “Lord have mercy, help us Lord, this is for real.”

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Associated Press writers Robert Bumstead and Michael Sisak contributed to the contents of this report.

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