Anthony Fauci Urges Americans To Reconsider Thanksgiving Gatherings Amid Pandemic

The infectious diseases expert said his own family's Thanksgiving is "going to look very different this year" because of the coronavirus.

Dr. Anthony Fauci on Wednesday revealed that his family’s Thanksgiving “is going to look very different this year” and said Americans “may have to bite the bullet” and rethink holiday gatherings as the coronavirus pandemic continues raging.

Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, told “CBS Evening News” anchor Norah O’Donnell that his children, who live in three different states, would not be visiting him over the holidays “because of their concern for me and my age.” Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is 79 and therefore at high risk of severe symptoms if he contracts COVID-19.

Fauci said the possible spread of the coronavirus at family gatherings would be a serious holiday concern. With the arrival of cooler weather, infections are again rising in many states that had shown monthslong declines.

“That is unfortunately a risk, when you have people coming from out of town, gathering together in an indoor setting,” Fauci said. “You don’t know what the status of it is. It is unfortunate because that’s such a sacred part of American tradition ― the family gathering around Thanksgiving. But that is a risk.”

Asked how people should approach the holidays, Fauci said that with “the fluid and dynamic nature of what’s going on right now in the spread and the uptick of infections, I think people should be very careful and prudent about social gatherings, particularly when members of the family might be at a risk because of their age or their underlying condition.”

“You may have to bite the bullet and sacrifice that social gathering, unless you’re pretty certain that the people that you’re dealing with are not infected,” he added.

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