U.S. Coronavirus Response Coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx stated in a visit to Minnesota on Sunday that Minnesotans haven’t done enough to decrease the spread of COVID-19. The visit is part of a cross-country tour to gauge how well states are adhering to coronavirus guidelines.
Birx commended the measures instituted by the state. However, she said that Minnesotans needed to do more – especially in rural areas.
“There really needs to be this common-sense adaption to everybody’s personal life of wearing a mask, preventing large crowds, really the six feet social distancing or having a mask on when you’re interacting with individuals.”
Birx stated that masks should also be worn in private gatherings.
“They make assumptions that there couldn’t be anybody that has infection there. And then they don’t wear their masks, and they interact together. And that creates spreading of the virus among family members and among neighbors.”
Birx also expects people to take initiative and get vaccinated once vaccines are available. She called the increase in cases “worrisome this late into the summer.”
“It really does come down to every Minnesotan following these common sense paths forward to ensure we protect each other.”
Dr. Birx didn’t mention the recently-discovered inflation caused by late test results. She also didn’t mention the Center for Disease Control (CDC) report indicating that existing comorbidities skewed the total number of COVID deaths.
“For 6% of the deaths, COVID-19 was the only cause mentioned,” the site states. “For deaths with conditions or causes in addition to COVID-19, on average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or causes per death.”
Dr. Birx and Governor Walz conferred after Birx’s speech. A spokesperson for Walz issued a statement on behalf of the governor, calling it “a productive conversation.” Walz and Birx apparently agreed that current measures against the virus aren’t enough.
Vice President Mike Pence appointed Dr. Deborah Birx in February to address the government’s response to COVID-19. Prior to the pandemic, Dr. Birx served primarily as the U.S. Global HIV/AIDS Coordinator.
Birx also stated that continued diligence with protective measures against COVID is important because of any possible future negative impacts it may have.
“We don’t know the long-term consequences. So although we say it’s only a mild or moderate disease right now, we are starting to see young people with long-term consequences – or at least medium-term consequences.”
As of this week, 89 percent of total reported COVID cases in Minnesota are recovered.
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