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'Tune Out Media Hysterics': As Fauci Warns US Headed in Wrong Direction, COVID Death Rate Declines

07-01-2020
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Image Source: AP Photo/Andrew Medichini
Image Source: AP Photo/Andrew Medichini

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says the country is on the wrong path when it comes to fighting the novel coronavirus. Fauci's warning comes as the nation is increasing its testing and seeing 40,000 new cases a day, numbers he told senators Tuesday could more than double.

But even as the tests have shown new cases in hot spots across the country, there appears to be some progress, if you dig deeper into the numbers. For example, this graph from statistics compiled by Johns Hopkins University shows the death rate has been flattened in the US.

We'll get into more about that death rate in a moment, but what's capturing all the headlines is that officials are sounding the alarm from coast to coast. "I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day if this does not turn around, so I'm very concerned," Fauci told Congress.  "I think it's important to tell you and the American public that I'm very concerned because it could get very bad."

In California, the virus is surging with nearly a quarter-million cases and over 100,000 cases in Los Angeles county alone. More than 6,000 people have died from the virus in the state. Tommy Macias, a 51-year-old diabetic who wore a mask and practiced social distancing for months, died after attending a family barbecue.
 
In Riverside County, ICU's are reportedly filled to capacity. "We're seeing a large number of cases coming in where multiple family members are infected," said Dr. Alan Williamson, CMO, Eisenhower Health.

California's Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a stern warning to residents. "If you're not gonna stay home, and you're not gonna wear masks in public, we have to enforce and we will," said Newsom.

Bars and beaches have been ordered closed ahead of the Fourth of July weekend. In Imperial County, CA, a tent has been set up outside of a hospital to handle the overflow of patients.

In Florida, more than 150,000 cases of this coronavirus have been reported, with most in Miami-Dade County. Several cities are now requiring residents to wear masks. "Just wear the darn mask," said Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber (D).

Studies show that talking allows the virus to spread through the air, and wearing a mask can reduce it, by some estimates, up to 50 percent. Ernst Bell of Jacksonville, FL, lost his father to COVID-19. He believes that masks could have made a difference. "If the people that he saw, you know were wearing a mask, he would still be alive," said Bell. 

Meanwhile, New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, where thousands have died from the virus, have issued a 14-day quarantine on people traveling from California and 15 other states where the virus is surging. 

Death Rate Actually Decreasing as Positive Cases Increase

As states are increasing their testing and seeing more cases as a result, there are also reports that the death rate is still decreasing.

Investigative journalist Jordan Schachtel reports that Monday and Tuesday this week brought the lowest number of COVID-19 deaths since March. 

"Lowest # on record w full testing capacity. New lows in deaths every week. Consistent decline week after week. Tune out media hysterics. Death rate is plummeting. Now, States just need to wake up," Schachtel reports.

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