Transcript for Dr. Atul Gawande on Trump COVID response: We've lacked 'a clear voice from the top'
We want to bring in Dr. Atul gawande. Dr. Gawande, good to see you. You heard what he just said. How important is that transition? It's important. Look, working with the transition team, they are -- I'm advising them. They're ready to go and are getting all the information they can. But -- You're talking about the Biden transition team obviously? It is in the nation's interest that the transition team get the threat assessment that the team knows about, understand the vaccine distribution plan. We need to know where the stockpiles are, what the status is of masks and gloves. There's a lot of information that needs transmitted. It can't wait til the last minute. You can hear in admiral Giroir's voice the doctors and scientists want to give us that information. It is vital. What do you believe needs to be done to stop this surge? You, I believe, heard those voters saying I don't believe it. What needs to be done that has not been done in this administration? Well, number one is a clear voice from the top backing a national comprehensive plan. We've lacked that. It's led to disarray for the public and confusing messages. That will change. Number two is mask wearing as admiral Giroir says, this is the -- the evidence is overwhelming this can stop and reverse the spread. What I would say to those citizens is simply that when a person goes into a store and does not wear a mask, when they go to a public gathering and are not wearing a mask, they're hurting everyone's freedom. They're putting people in danger. More over, T turning people away from shops and stores. That's hurting jobs. That's the critical mix of things. Opposing masks is like opposing washing hands. It's not political. We can pull together. We can do this. Dr. Gawande, I want to clear this up since another member of the task force suggested there could be a four to six-week shutdown nationwide. Is there a scenario where that could happen? We are not in support of a nationwide lockdown and believe there's not a scenario unless -- there simply isn't a scenario because we can get this under control. The critical parts are understanding what we've learned since we D a nationwide lockdown in early April. You can have targeted measures building on mask wearing to include widespread testing, can include dialing up and down capacity restrictions and those measures need to happen in a more localized basis. You can look at New York City for example where on a zip code by zip code basis you can deploy different restrictions in order to get the virus under control. It's quite effective. We do not need to go into a nationwide shelter in place shutdown. Thank you so much for joining us this morning, Dr. Gawande. All good to see you.
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