Dr. Anthony Fauci says Connecticut is in a good place when it comes to the pandemic.
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The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases joined Gov. Ned Lamont virtually for his COVID-19 media briefing Monday, emphasizing the importance of trying to get students back in classrooms this fall, even if it’s for just two to three months.
“The default position should be to try the best as you possibly can for in-person learning for the following reasons,” Fauci said. “It’s important for the children because of the psychological benefit and in some places even for the nutrition for some of the children who rely on breakfast and lunch in schools for proper nutritional benefit.”
But parents should still be on alert with regard to sending children back to school.
“It’s always up to the final decision of the responsible parent to do what’s best for the child,” Fauci said. “We can only show you that when the infection is low at the level that you’re seeing now, the risk is low. But if you do start seeing infections, you may need to pull back.”
Fauci said statistics show that children rarely experience severe coronavirus symptoms. However, Fauci said if a large uptick in cases happens once the school year begins, it would be wise to shut schools back down.
“At the expense of risk to them transmitting it to someone who would be at a risk, I think we have to be very careful,” said Fauci. “The best thing we can do is trying to avoid infection as opposed to wanting to get infection to get herd immunity.”
Over the weekend, Connecticut surpassed 50,000 coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic, with 56 residents hospitalized, down 13 from Friday. Lamont said Monday that Connecticut’s infection rate stands at 0.7%.