CNBC presenter Shepard Smith urges viewers to “follow the fauci” as U.S. coronavirus infections reach record highs and more than 83,000 cases were reported in a single day on Friday.
“Those of us in New York and the northeast of the country are worried about you, our friends, our loved ones and our viewers across the country, now more than ever,” Smith said Friday night in the last segment of The News with Shepard Smith. “This new COVID rise is terrible. So, follow the fauci. Not for us, we’re usually doing fine here, we’re worried about you”.
Smith referred to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the White House coronavirus consultant and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, who for months has been urging people across the United States to wear masks, wash their hands, maintain social distance and avoid crowds.
The recent increase in COVID 19 cases is felt in almost every pocket in the country, with the recent per capita outbreak hitting the Midwest and the American West hard. The 83,757 cases reported on Friday surpassed the previous case load record of 77,362 cases set on July 16. There were also nearly 1,000 deaths from COVID-19 on Friday, bringing the total number of deaths to 223,995, according to Johns Hopkins University.
While hospitals in areas such as Idaho and Wisconsin are increasingly overburdened due to the high volume of patients, infectious disease experts warn that the infection rate will only increase as the colder months approach, leading to a staggering number of hospital admissions and possible deaths.
Fauci told CNN on Friday that a federal mask mandate may be needed to slow this winter rise.
“Well, if people aren’t wearing masks, then maybe we should make it mandatory,” he said. “It will be difficult to enforce it, but if everyone agrees that this is something important, and they give the mandate and everyone pulls together… I think it would be a great idea if everyone did it uniformly,” he said.
In a warning to the emerging nations, Smith told viewers that the horror they are experiencing now is one that New Yorkers know far too well.
“In spring and early summer, we experienced the horror of neighbors and friends being sick and dying,” Smith told viewers. “Doctors and nurses we know and admire were in the depths of depression in hospitals that had no beds, with freezers outside full of victims whose families never got to say goodbye. We could knock our pots and pans out of our windows to cheer on our heroes, but we could not help except to be locked up.
Smith added that New York was able to survive the outbreak of the pandemic earlier because it was able to comply with the lockdown rules, which he believes is not happening in other affected parts of the state.
“We left scars, but we’re better now – because we followed the rules and beat back COVID. We had to do it,” he said. “Many of you are not doing it.”
“Scientists tell us that next month will be historically bad unless you make a personal decision to follow the Fauci,” he added. “Wear a mask, social distance, save parties and weddings for another time. Separate holidays will be difficult. Start this weekend, we will get through it”.