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Fauci open to a 14-day 'national shutdown' to stem virus

NAT Trump
Posted at 3:43 PM, Mar 15, 2020

WASHINGTON -- The government’s top infectious disease expert says he'd like to see aggressive measures such as a 14-day national shutdown that would require Americans to hunker down more to help slow spread of the coronavirus.

Still, Dr. Anthony Fauci says travel restrictions within the United States probably won't be needed anytime soon.

He says in a series of television interviews that the U.S. should do as much as “we possibly could" even if officials are criticized for overreacting.

When asked about a 14-day national shutdown, Fauci said Americans should be prepared to “hunker down significantly more than we as a country are doing.”

Fauci, says he’s worried about the health risks of long lines and crowding at U.S. airports amid new coronavirus travel restrictions and that “we’d like to not see crowds like that” as Americans and other travelers return from Europe. He cited the aim of social distancing to prevent spread of COVID-19.

Fauci says it’s understandable with a travel ban, people would immediately feel they want to “hunker and get home,” but if you’re an American citizen, you can get back “there is no need to rush back.”

Weary travelers returning to the U.S. amid coronavirus-related travel restrictions have been greeted by long lines and hourslong waits for required medical screenings at airports.

Fauci trying to stop Trump from shaking hands

The nation’s top infectious disease expert says he’s trying to get President Donald Trump to stop shaking hands.

Fauci said he’s “working on” getting Trump to greet people he meets with elbow bumps instead of handshakes as the coronavirus pandemic spreads around the globe.

Trump, a self-described germaphobe, avoided handshakes before jumping into politics in 2015. The president said he’s now having trouble giving up the instinctive “habit” of shaking hands.

The chief of the World Health Organization, meanwhile, says that even elbow bumps bring people too close together.