CNN medical analyst Dr. Leana Wen on Monday advised the American public to cancel their Christmas and New Year plans as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
During an appearance on “New Day,” Wen voiced her concern that COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations are still rising after Thanksgiving. Because of the “Thanksgiving surge,” she called on everyone to “absolutely not gather indoors with anyone who is not in their immediate family” for the upcoming Christmas and New Year holidays.
“The incubation period for COVID-19 … is up to 14 days. The average is about five to seven days. And so what that means is we had Thanksgiving and people returning from Thanksgiving about a week ago. So this week, we’re going to see the impact of that Thanksgiving surge. And I’m afraid that all of those numbers that you just presented, Erica, they’re going to go up,” Wen outlined. “We’re going to see increases of hospitalizations, and hospitals are already on the brink. So, where is the reserve capacity? Where are patients going to be going at this point? I’m also deeply concerned about deaths going up. At some point, we’re going to be surpassing 3,000 deaths per day, maybe even 4,000 deaths per day. Our surge right now is intensifying. It is amplifying.”
“And I hope that people realize that hospitals are the last line of defense. The first line of defense is the community. And we really need everyone to do their part to flatten the curve,” she continued. “And that means, of course, wearing a mask, keeping physical distancing, but also so critically at this point, avoiding indoor gatherings. Anyone who has not canceled their plans yet for Christmas and the New Year should cancel their travel plans and absolutely not gather indoors with anyone who is not in their immediate family.”