As the novel coronavirus continues to spread around the country, New York City has become the new epicenter of COVID-19 infections, with around 20,000 confirmed cases and 280 deaths as of Thursday.
Given the explosive growth of the coronavirus in and around New York City, the White House Coronavirus Task Force announced on Tuesday that it was recommending anyone who has recently lived in or passed through the area to quarantine themselves for 14 days as a precaution against potential exposure, The Daily Wire reported.
The recommendation of self-quarantine for those who have recently been in New York City came from top task force adviser Dr. Deborah Birx during a press briefing at the White House on Tuesday.
Citing updated numbers from that day, Birx said, “About 56% of all the cases in the United States are coming out of that metro area, and 60% of all the new cases are coming out of the metro New York area and 31% of the people succumbing to this disease.
“But to everyone who has left New York over the last few days: Because of the rate of the number of cases, you may have been exposed before you left New York,” she continued.
She went on to say that she believes “everybody who was in New York should be self-quarantining for the next 14 days to ensure that the virus doesn’t spread to others, no matter where they have gone, whether it’s Florida, North Carolina, or out to far, far reaches of Long Island.”
“We are starting to see new cases across Long Island that suggest people have left the city,” she added. “So this will be very critical that those individuals do self-quarantine in their homes over these next 14 days to make sure they don’t pass the virus to others, based on the time that they left New York.”
NYC labeled “high-risk”
Dr. Anthony Fauci, another top adviser on the task force, agreed with Birx that what was happening in New York was a “very serious situation,” noting, “The idea about self-isolating for two weeks will be very important, because we don’t want that to be another seeding point to the rest of the country, wherever they go.”
The recommendation from Birx was also backed up by Vice President Mike Pence, head of the task force, who labeled the area “high-risk.”
“We’re particularly focused on New York. The reality is the New York metro area was 60% of the new cases in the country,” and had a higher infection rate than any other part of the country, Pence said. “It is the reason why today the White House Coronavirus Task Force is calling on any American — first and foremost, if you’re in the New York City metropolitan area or elsewhere — to take the guidelines that we issued and avoid nonessential travel.
“But for anyone in the New York metropolitan area who has traveled, our task force is encouraging you to monitor your temperature, be sensitive to symptoms, and we are asking anyone who has traveled out of the New York City metropolitan area to anywhere else in the country to self-isolate for 14 days,” Pence added.
Seems like sound advice.