Adm. Brett Giroir said Sunday it’s too early to tell if a spike in travel during the Christmas season will lead to a spike in Covid-19 cases.
“It really depends on what the travelers do when they get where they’re going,” Giroir said on “Fox News Sunday.”
“We know the actual physical act of traveling in airplanes, for example, can be quite safe because of the air purification systems,” Giroir continued. “What we really worry about is the mingling of different bubbles once you get to your destination. Over Thanksgiving we saw a mixed picture. In the Midwest and in the northern Plains, cases continued to go down despite the travel.”
Giroir, a four-star admiral, is serving as director of U.S. coronavirus diagnostic testing. He said that during the holiday season, as has been true for months, the most important factor is how careful Americans are.
“I really encourage people to follow the CDC guidelines, make your family gatherings small, safe, protect the elderly and we can get through this,” he said.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, speaking to host Dana Bash on CNN’s “State of the Union,” said it was quite possible there might be a post-holiday surge even if people are careful.
“There’s no guarantee it’ll happen, but there certainly is a danger of that. When you travel — you see pictures on the TV screens, Dana, of people at airports crowded in lines, trying to stay physically separated. But it’s so difficult to do that,” said Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Almost 19 million cases of coronavirus have been diagnosed in the United States. The current death toll is 331,930, by far the highest in the world.