“We are seeing a higher level of vigilance and mitigation measures in public spaces in many countries,” said Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, speaking with the country’s governors on Tuesday. Audio of the call was obtained from CNN.
“But what we see as a growing threat right now is the acquisition of infections from small household gatherings,” Redfield said. “Especially with the upcoming Thanksgiving Day, we think it is very important to emphasize the vigilance of these ongoing mitigation measures in the budget.”
The White House Coronavirus Task Force Coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx, reiterated Redfield̵
This is especially important when college students return home. Experts have warned that young college students, who often show mild or no symptoms, can help spread the virus around the home by infecting their parents, who then potentially infect other parts of their home and community.
“You want to see them less than 3%, ideally 1% or less,” he said at a College of American Pathologists event.
“We are seeing a number of states going well beyond what is often – in fact always – a prediction of recurrence of cases that we historically know will lead to an increase in hospitalizations and ultimately an increase in Deaths. “
USA average of 49,000 new infections per day
The country is currently seeing an average of more than 49,000 new infections each day – a 13% increase from the previous week, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
In Wisconsin, hospital stays have nearly tripled in the past month, the governor said, adding that residents should do whatever they can to get the virus under control and prevent the state health system from becoming overwhelmed.
In Washington state, a public health official warned of a dramatic increase in cases.
“Over 140 cases have been reported daily for the past week,” said Dr. Jeff Duchin, Seattle and King County’s Health Commissioner. “That is more than twice as much as at the end of September.”
Increasing cases lead to restrictions
Several local leaders have urged new action after an increase in cases. Oklahoma City leaders extended the local mask ordinance until at least December 7th as the number of hospitalizations in Covid-19 increased.
Regional Medical Response System director Heather Yazdanipour told CNN the city is currently in a surge environment and there is a lack of equipment, space and staff in hospitals the arriving patients.
New Mexico governor Michelle Lujan Grisham on Tuesday announced several restrictions to contain the spread of the virus in an “alarming” surge in cases across the state.
“If the spread of the virus in the community becomes uncontrollable – and we are rapidly approaching this point – our only option is to simply rule out those possibilities for the virus,” the governor said in a statement.
Alcohol bars and restaurants must close at 10 p.m. on Friday, and mass gatherings are limited to five people.
“Rollbacks will mean more economic turmoil for so many workers and entrepreneurs in our state who have already suffered and sacrificed so much,” said the governor. “But it is our only chance to prevent more devastating diseases and save lives.”
Fauci: vaccine development “on the right track”
“Some of the vaccines are about to get information,” he said, according to the audio received from CNN.
US health officials should know by November or December if there is a safe and effective vaccine, Fauci said, adding, “It’s conceivable that by then we will even know.”
During the call, Minister of Health and Human Services Alex Azar recalled that there is an upcoming deadline for submitting a vaccine distribution plan to the CDC.
“We want you to be in close contact with your CDC contact person during this process as you near the deadline for submitting a vaccine distribution plan to the CDC on Friday October 16,” said Azar.
CNN’s Amanda Watts, Andy Rose, Betsy Klein, Kay Jones, Lauren Mascarenhas and Jenn Selva contributed to this report.