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Surgeon General Just Issued This "Deeply Concerning" Warning

Kids are in danger, as are adults, warns the Surgeon General.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

Fox News host Chris Wallace shared "the alarming numbers" about COVID-19. "The average of new cases is now more than 151,000 a day. That's up more than a thousand percent from June and children now make up 18% of new cases. That's almost one in five. How high could this number of new cases per day get in this fourth wave?" To answer, Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy spoke with Wallace on Fox News Sunday today. Read on for 6 answers than could save your life or the life of a child—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You Have "Long" COVID and May Not Even Know It.

1

Surgeon General Warned the Cases are "Deeply Concerning"

Young sick woman lies tired in bed with a face mask and holds her head because of a headache.
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"The numbers are deeply concerning," said Murthy. "We have seen data-driven by the Delta variant cases surge over the last several weeks. And how high could they go? It's an open question. But I do think there are a couple of things buried in the data which are very important to recognize. Number one is that the vast majority of people who are ending up in the hospital and who are losing their lives are those who are unvaccinated, which means that the vaccinations are doing their job to keep people out of the hospital and to save lives." Recently, one million vaccinations have been administered each day, an uptick. "My hope is that that will continue to accelerate because that is ultimately how we are going to save lives and overcome the Delta variant."

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Surgeon General Warned We Have "Thousands" of Kids Hospitalized with Delta

Nurse with thermometer measures fever on patient child in hospital bed, wearing protective visor and surgical mask.
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President Biden has directed his Education Secretary to go after governors who have imposed mask mandate bans for kids. Wallace asked: "Is the public health risk to children so great that it justifies President Biden ordering the government to perhaps take action against, for instance, against Governor DeSantis in Florida, Governor Abbott in Texas for violating the civil rights of students?"

"Let me say this," said Murthy, "not just as a surgeon general or as a doctor, but let me say this as a father, there is nothing more important than the health and the wellbeing of our children. What we have seen during the course of this pandemic is that COVID thankfully is not as severe in kids as it is in older adults. Thank goodness for that. But we have had hundreds of children who have lost their lives to COVID. We have thousands who are hospitalized, and right now we have more children hospitalized with COVID than at any other point during this pandemic. And that's because of the Delta variant and how contagious it is. So we absolutely should be taking every step possible to protect our kids from this virus. That is our moral responsibility as human beings, as adults."

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Surgeon General Said Mask Wearing Keeps Kids Safe, Period

Pediatrician doctor examining sick child in face mask
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Wallace asked Murthy: "What about the idea that other parents should decide whether or not they want their children to wear masks?" "We know that the greatest protection to children is when all people are masked in school," answered Murthy. "And there are decisions all the time, where we require people to do things for the better good. We have a list of childhood vaccines, for example, that parents have to make sure their kids have before they start school. This is just one more example of that. A step we take to protect all kids. And it's a step, I think that's relatively low cost, that is especially important to take during this pandemic."

RELATED: These 8 States Have "Uncontrolled" COVID Outbreaks

4

Surgeon General Said This is How the FDA's Full Approval of the Pfizer Vaccine—Expected Tomorrow—Affects You

Doctor holding Pfizer Biontech vaccine against coronavirus COVID disease
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Full approval of the Pfizer vaccine from the FDA, expected to come tomorrow—"this is important for a couple of reasons," said Murthy. "One is my belief is, number one, there were some people who may have been waiting for this and who may come off the fence, so to speak, to get vaccinated. So it may help increase vaccination rates to some extent, but I also think that there are universities and businesses that have been considering putting in vaccine requirements in order to create a safer a workplace or learning environment. And I think that this announcement from the FDA would likely encourage them and make them feel more comfortable in putting such requirements in place."

RELATED: 6 COVID Mistakes That Could Cost You Your Life

5

Surgeon General Said We Have to Both Boost Americans and Vaccinate the World

Female Doctor hands holding vaccine bottle and syringe.
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There has been criticism of the idea of offering boosters to Americans—starting on the eighth month of their last Pfizer and Moderna shots—when so many people around the world have not have their first shot. "This is a critical issue because we know that to end this pandemic and to prevent the development of future variants," said Murthy. "So we need to vaccinate both America and the world, and we don't have a choice. We can do one or the other. We have to do both that way. Assuming that vaccines for Americans takes away from vaccines for the rest of the world, the world assumes that the pie stays the same size, but we have been making a number of efforts in recent months to increase the size of the pie, to enhance the supply and doing that, not just by donating our own doses, but by actually working with the manufacturers to increase in scale up their production, as well as working with other countries to establish local production of the vaccine and scale that up. That's how we create enough vaccines for everyone and rest assured grace. We will not stop in these efforts until America and the world are vaccinated. That is our commitment."

RELATED: Dr. Fauci Just Shared 7 Key Points About Boosters

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How to Stay Safe Out There

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Follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Alek Korab
Alek Korab is a Co-Founder and Managing Editor of the ETNT Health channel on Eat This, Not That! Read more about Alek