I’d like to also touch on a subject that I think many doctors and health organizations are avoiding talking about and that’s how protests are affecting COVID-19 numbers. If you know me at all, I am not a fan of fear-mongering. You’ve heard me call out the media time and time again about the fact that they’re only after clicks and viewership with the type of fear-mongering they put out. But I think it’s about time that I fear-monger you a little bit.
I gave us so much credit as a nation in the beginning, I would go on national TV shows and say there’s so much unity around COVID. And now, I don’t know what happened over these last few weeks but we threw social distancing out the window. We threw masks out the window and we’re no longer being alert, we’re no longer being proactive. And what’s happening?COVID cases are spiking, people are dying, and the second wave isn’t even here yet. 18 states are experiencing new highs of COVID-19 cases. Six states have a spike greater than 50% in their cases. This is a huge problem folks. Because the way we control COVID right now is by being responsible, both you and me. And that means keeping six feet away from others. That means wearing a mask at all times where you’re encountering other people.
Recently, I took a walk around New York City and I saw bars open. I saw people standing next to each other, talking with no masks in groups of 50. We can’t do this, because the more we do it the more people are gonna suffer, especially because we don’t have a vaccine. If you think it’s bad now, it can get a lot worse for the fall. Many people have asked me if vaccines are the answer to COVID-19and while I have high hopes for the vaccine, I also have a few reservations. Dr. Fauci, NIH, CDC have said that the proposed timeline if everything goes well early, 2021, and that’s the fastest we’ve ever had a vaccine. So while I’m hopeful it comes out then, it’s very easy for something to go wrong. The vaccine not get created, we see some harmful effects and the timeline gets pushed. Second, we don’t know yet the efficacy of this vaccine because while there are several companies, several trials, and several different vaccines in play, we don’t know yet what percentage of the time do these vaccines actually work. That is why I’m still urging you to socially distance, to wear a mask, to wash your hands because you could be standing next to someone who looks completely healthy and they could potentially be getting you sick. And going even further on this topic,
I wanna discuss something that the WHO has said which has made my blood boil. The WHO issued this statement last week and it confused a lot of people. Take a listen. – From the data we have, it still seems to be rare that an asymptomatic person actually transmits onward to a second individual. – This confused everybody, even doctors. We were all confused as to which research they were talking about. Most people, like JoeRogan, took it this way. Now, this comes out today that was, it basically said if you’re asymptomatic, you can’t transfer it as easily as they thought. It’s almost impossible. So all that worry that we were about kids giving it to their grandmothers, they’re not gonna do that. That was the only reason why stores are shut down. This is a prime example of poor scientific communication.
Let me explain. Asymptomatic means something different in technical terms than it does to you or I. This researcher was trying to explain that those who are asymptomatic, meaning aren’t showing symptoms right now and will never show symptoms don’t usually spread COVIDbut pre-symptomatic patients, those who are asymptomatic right now but will get sick later can spread COVID quite quickly. To scientists, pre-symptomatic and asymptomatic are two different terms. To you and I, they’re the same thing. The WHO quickly corrected this statement and I understood the mistake that they made, it happens. As a large organization, that is general-public-facing, they need to do a better job at clarifying these things. We need to be able to trust the WHO. I’ve consistently said on this channel to trust the WHO. YouTube pushes you to the WHO. Anything that would go against World HealthOrganization recommendations would be a violation of our policy. So we need to not lose trust in them. And the way that we do that is for them to avoid mistakes like this in the future. And speaking of mistakes, let’s talk about my advice on masks early on in this pandemic. Here’s a clip of me from mid-February talking about masks and pay close attention to the words that I use.
The CDC has been firm on this. Most people, the ones that are healthy and not sick do not need a mask at this time. Notice that I approached that subject with a level of humility. I wasn’t certain that masks wouldn’t help. The best evidence at the time told us that masks wouldn’t help and it was true then; however, now we know something different, and that something different is just because someone is healthy doesn’t mean they can’t be spreading the virus. In the beginning of this pandemic, people thought by wearing masks they’d protect themselves so we said, “No, that’s wrong, “but now we recommend masks not to protect you, the person wearing the mask, but to limit you, as a person who looks healthy, from spreading the virus into the environment. So by everyone wearing a mask, we’re protecting the community not the wearer. In addition, in the beginning of the pandemic, we had a huge shortage of surgical masks and N95 masks in the hospital setting where we were working directly with COVID-19 patients, and medical providers were dying as a result of that. I still stand by my guidance at the time even though it wasn’t accurate. It was based off the best evidence at the time. Will it change? Yes. Will I be afraid to tell you that it’s changed? No, because I want you to constantly be updated.
Looking at the most recent research, we’ve seen that actually wearing masks, even that cheap and expensive surgical masks or fabric face coverings really does limit the spread of this specific virus. That’s why it upsets me so to walk around New York City and see all these people not wearing masks when they’re in crowds of people. Look, if you’re walking out into your backyard and no one’s there, you don’t need a mask. If you live in a remote area where you’re not gonna run into anybody, you don’t need a mask; however, if you’re going out to a crowded area, you have to wear a mask. I’d like to also touch on a subject that I think many doctors and health organizations are avoiding talking about, and that’s how protests are affecting COVID-19 numbers. We can’t, as health care institutions,go out and say, “Hey do not have any social gatherings” unless you’re protesting a just cause. “We can’t say that, that’s not accurate. If you have a huge social gathering of thousands of people, you’re putting your life at risk and potentially the lives of who you will encounter throughout your next days.
When you’re protesting, try and keep six feet away from others. If you’re gonna be chanting or singing, make sure the mask is covering your face. For the next two weeks do your best to stay away from vulnerable populations: those over the age of 60or with immunocompromised states. And after you protest, please, please, go and get tested. Because the last thing we want you to do is to be one of those people who are asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic and are spreading this virus to thousands of people. The virus, unfortunately, doesn’t care if there are racial injustices occurring in this country. I hate that these racial injustice is occurring. The medical community stands with the protests but we have to be objective and still say that by protesting you’re putting your life at risk.
Look, I get it, we’re burned out. We’ve been sitting at home for close to three months now, not being able to go do the things that we enjoy, not being able to see our loved ones, not being able to find work and struggling to pay rent and securing food, I get it. What you’re experiencing is called caution fatigue. There’s even a medical term for it and we in the medical community experience something similar called alarm fatigue. We’re in the ER and there constant alarm bells ringing, we stopped paying attention to them and that’s a problem. I think media constantly giving you an outbreak warning every single day, telling you that there’s anew coronavirus high number has burned you out to the point where you tune it out and that’s a problem because I need you to stay alert but I also need you to stay active, not anxious. I recommended a couple ofvideos for you here to watch and as always, stay happy and healthy.