“The message is that clearly this is something that is hurting, from the standpoint of economics and the standpoint of things that have nothing to do with the virus,” Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” “But unless we get the virus under control, the real recovery economically is not going to happen.”
The anti-quarantine protests, some of the largest of which have been organized by far-right activists, have created the impression that opposition to stay-at-home orders is more common than polling suggests. President Trump has at times encouraged the demonstrators to “liberate” their states.
Fauci on Monday also cautioned against drawing too many conclusions from antibody tests, which determine whether a person was already infected with a virus. Many of the tests in circulation have not been validated or calibrated, he warned.
Fauci added that although antibodies for other viruses generally confer immunity upon people who have them, experts have not proved that protection exists for the coronavirus and how long it lasts if it does exist.
“The assumption that, with the tests that are out there, if you have an antibody positivity, you are good to go — unless that test has been validated and you can show there’s a correlation between the antibody and protection, it is an assumption to say that this is something that we can work with,” Fauci said. “We still have a way to go with that.”