Dr. Peter Hotez stands after a showdown between Republican Senator Rand Paul and Dr. Anthony Fauci on Capitol Hill for masks on the side of one of the best doctors in the country.
“Dr. Fauci is absolutely right, Senator Paul is absolutely wrong, and it has been for the past 14 months,” said Hotez.
Paul claimed that after their recovery or vaccination, people are not at risk for Covid and therefore do not need to wear masks. The Kentucky Senator also claimed that Fauci was just sporting two masks.
The White House chief medical officer strongly opposed Paul’s comments Thursday during a Senate hearing examining the country’s efforts to respond to the coronavirus.
“I can only say that masks are no theater,” said Fauci. “I totally disagree with you.”
In a Thursday night interview on The News with Shepard Smith, Hotez noted that “masks may need to be removed” but that it is too early and “we are still trying to understand the full performance characteristics of the vaccines”.
“We are only now getting a clue that it is interrupting the asymptomatic transmission,” said Hotez.
The masks debate comes from the fact that almost half of the country has seen an increase in Covid cases. 23 states reported an average of seven days increase in cases last week, according to Johns Hopkins. Half a dozen states are also seeing a higher trend in hospital stays, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.
Hotez, co-director of the Center for Vaccine Development at Texas Children’s Hospital, told host Shepard Smith that the spikes could be the result of highly transmissible new variants.
“The key now is to vaccinate before the variants as soon as possible,” said Hotez.