Gov Data: States Seeing NO SPIKE After Reopening

( As states begin to reopen, Americans are beginning to see what the impact will be in relation to coronavirus infection rates. On CNN’s “State of the Union,” Alex Azar, the government’s Health and Human Services Secretary, announced that there has yet to be a spike in coronavirus infections in the states that are beginning to reopen.

In flies in the face of everything Democratic governors, including Michigan’s Governor Gretchen Whitmer, are telling their residents.

Jake Tapper asked Azar about states like Colorado and Georgia who have begun rapidly reopening businesses, including hospitality businesses like restaurants.

“Let me ask you, this is intriguing to me because some states have been reopening despite warnings of dire consequences from health experts, states like Georgia and Colorado began reopening weeks ago, and it seems at least so far that we have not seen a dramatic spike in new cases from those two states, Georgia and Colorado,” he said. “What have you seen from those states? Is there any cause for concern that they reopened early? Is it still too early to tell? Or are they taking measures such as social distancing and masks that make this reopening work?”

Azar responded positively, saying his comments were insightful, and they are. These states have indeed been implementing social distancing measures while allowing businesses to reopen, which means the virus isn’t spread as easily as it would have been before lockdown.

“We are seeing that in areas that are opening, we’re not seeing the spike in cases,” Azar said. “We still see spikes in some areas that are, in fact, closed, very localized situations. And so this is going to be very important for us to watch the circumstances on the ground.”

Azar went on to talk about the importance of having good surveillance and for people to be aware of influenza-like symptoms so that cases of the virus can be dealt with quickly.

“We have a great surveillance system for that,” he said. “We look for spikes and early indicators. We have adequate testing capacity. We need to make sure anybody who is symptomatic is tested and that we have adequate asymptomatic surveillance in areas of greatest burden. Senior living, congregate living situations like prisons or facilities were people are close together.”

Azar then explained how the government can then use “traditional public health tools” to assist with surges, which would also include testing everybody and using contact tracing and isolation to stop those spikes.

These are the tools, he said, that have allowed these states to reopen without causing disastrous spikes in the virus.

He also supported the claims made by President Donald Trump that reopening doesn’t depend on a vaccine, though the vaccine would certainly help.