Daily US Times, Washington: US Vice President Mike Pence said that there is no need for people in the US to buy and wear masks to protect themselves from the new coronavirus.
The VP said this in a press conference while president Trump and other administration officials were present. The President and Vice President were speaking to the media after the US confirmed its first coronavirus death — a person in Washington state.
Mike Pence said “This morning we talked a great deal about additional medical supplies. Let me be very clear, and I’m sure the physicians who are up here will reflect this as well: The average American does not need to go out and buy a mask.”
US Surgeon General Jerome Adams also echoed the vice president’s statement in a tweet on Saturday, urging people to “STOP BUYING MASKS.”
President Trump announced Pence in charge of the nation’s coronavirus strategy. The federal government has faced criticism over its handling of the coronavirus outbreak as it is spreading across the world.
Trump said the US has access to 43 million medical mask, just one of the resources that he credited with ensuring the country is “prepared for whatever circumstance.”
The US government is contracting with 3M to create 35 million more masks each month. The administration will work with other (as yet unnamed) mask manufacturers and added that the task force is working to develop a course of action that would prioritize masks for the use by “high-risk” healthcare professionals.
The first coronavirus death in US soil was confirmed on Saturday. The affected person was a man in his 50s who had underlying health circumstances, according to Dr. Jeffrey Duchin, health officer for Seattle and King County, Washington state.
There was no proof the affected person had close contact with an infected particular person or a related journey history that will have exposed the patient to the virus, Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, mentioned on the White House Saturday, suggesting the affected person became sick through community spread.
Whereas that is the first death in the USA from the coronavirus, it’s not the first death of an American. A 60-year-old US citizen died earlier this month within the city of Wuhan, China, where the virus first appeared in late December.
The CDC only recommends masks only for those in a region currently experiencing an outbreak, healthcare workers treating coronavirus patients, and anyone who experiences flu-like symptoms.