Dr. Fauci gives support to CA curfew order

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There has been controversy over California’s overnight stay at home order, which goes into effect Saturday night.

But the nation’s top health official is backing the decision.

"I certainly think the basis upon which it is sound, I would back that," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases commenting on the curfew before it was officially announced.

There have been some questions about whether or not a curfew will be effective in stopping the spread, but Dr. Fauci says evidence supports the policy.

"It is certainly true that in other countries, curfews - for example, for bars closing at certain times, for restaurants closing at certain times - has actually helped. When you look at what happens as you get late into the evening, people let down their guard."

In other words, the idea behind the order is not that the virus behaves any differently at night, but that people are more likely to engage in risky behavior.

"People maybe drink a little too much, people get in congregate settings," said Dr. Fauci.

State officials are hoping that residents support and heed the order, otherwise more restrictions could be necessary.

"If we do see trends that are more concerning, that we don’t see the impact and effects of the actions today, there are other tools in the toolbox," said Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly.

He said that the month-long, targeted curfew is a much less restrictive option than the broad stay at home orders that went into effect in the spring, but that the state will do what it deems necessary to save lives.