The CDC has been pretty quiet lately, while the President and his health advisors have been keeping the country informed. CDC director, Dr. Robert Redfield, and the agency, based in Atlanta, has not held a media briefing since March 9.
Sam Whitehead, the health reporter at WABE in Atlanta managed an interview with Dr. Redfield on Monday, March 30th. Here’s what Redfield claims the CDC has learned new about the virus in recent weeks.
According to Redfield, the virus has the ability to transmit far easier than flu. It’s probably now about three times as infectious as flu. A significant number of individuals that are infected actually remain asymptomatic. That can be as many as 25%, which is important because now you have individuals that may not have any symptoms that can contribute to trans-mission, and in fact, they do contribute to transmission.
Those individuals that get symptomatic are shedding significant virus in their oropharyngeal compartment, probably up to 48 hours before they show symptoms. This helps explain how rapidly the virus continues to spread across the country, be-cause there are asymptomatic transmitters and individuals who are transmitting 48 hours before they become symptomatic.
This proves that social distancing is a powerful weapon. “I’d like to thank Americans who have taken that to heart and practice aggressive social distancing, said Redfield. “For those that are still on the sidelines, I’d like to tell them that now’s the time to embrace this. This virus cannot go from person to person that easily. It needs us to be within 6 feet. If we distance ourselves, this virus can’t sustain itself and it will go out.”