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The American health care system can beat coronavirus, Fox News medical contributor Dr. Marc Siegel said Saturday.
Appearing on “Fox & Friends Weekend” with hosts Jedediah Bila, Griff Jenkins, and Pete Hegseth, Siegel also said that he is hoping that further impending guidelines from the White House’s Task Force don’t become “another political football.”
“I think we have to focus on the hotspots and there’s going to be more of them besides New York and Seattle,” he advised. “We’re going to see more cases in L.A. We’re going to see more cases in Boston, and Chicago, and Atlanta, in New Orleans, in Miami…Those are going to be hotspots and I think we need to focus on them.”
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Siegel also said that the use of “point of care” testing will be instrumental in the fight against the disease. He cited the use of an Abbott Test, which is a device that allows physicians to test 50,000 people per day.
“So, the more point of care testing we have…I don’t have to wait days [to diagnose] that will help with the president’s new guidelines which [are] to say: ‘ Let’s focus on the areas that are hardest hit,'” he remarked.
President Trump announced Thursday that the administration’s new guidelines will advise governors in states across the nation on potential changes to social distancing, based on whether certain counties are low, medium or high risk for the virus.
In a letter from the president to “America’s Governors,” Trump said the administration is “working to publish new guidelines for State and local policymakers to use in making decisions about maintaining, increasing, or relaxing social distancing and other mitigation measures they have put in place.”
The president also said that the White House envisions that the expanded testing capabilities will “enable us to publish criteria, developed in coordination with the Nation’s public health officials and scientists, to help classify counties with respect to continued risks posed by the virus.”
The president’s message to governors comes after comments he made during a Fox News virtual town hall, saying he “would love to have the country opened up” by Easter, which falls on April 12.
“I think he has the economy in mind here too because if he releases the restrictions a little bit on areas that are not as hard hit, those businesses can start to recover,” Siegel added. “But, remember: we still want the social distancing. We still want the handwashing.”
“Here in the United States, we have the ability to do, as we’re talking about today, early identification, triage: ‘Who is the sickest? Who is most at risk? How do we take care of them?'” Siegel stated further.
“You know, our health care workers aren’t getting enough credit for that. We have heroes involved in this and we have a great health care system here,” Siegel told the “Friends Weekend” hosts. “They are overwhelmed which is why we’ve been talking about more personal protective equipment. But, at the end of the day, we have the ability to take care of sick people here and get them to recover. And, with these new lab tests, we’re going to be able to prove they recovered.”
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While Siegel predicted that the United States would never see the case figures that came out of China, he urged: “we need to jump on this.”
“As the president was saying, we need to focus in on the hotspots,” Siegel repeated. “We need to look on the horizon for other ones and select them and focus on them.”
“We can do it here in the United States,” he concluded. “We can do it. We’re proud of our health care system and we will beat this virus.”