Things didn’t go too well for Elisabeth Hasslbeck this Monday during her interview with Director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Anthony Fauci.
When the Fox & Friends host suggested that a “closing of our borders” in response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa might be a viable solution, Dr. Fauci dismissed her logic outright.
“Why are we still letting people into the country who could have possibly been exposed?” Hasslbeck asked. “Why not just shut down the flights and secure the borders? Many of you want to know — why not, just as a precaution until we get things under control, seal off the border temporarily?”
Fauci said that he understood why hysteria generated by a disease like Ebola could provoke that kind of reaction, but he went on to explain that an isolationist tactic like the one Hasslbeck proposed would actually make the situation worse.
“If we completely isolate them, don’t let anything in, don’t let anything out, we know from experience with public health, that marginalizes them,” he said. “And you could have civil unrest, governments could fall. And then you wind up having spread the virus to other countries in West Africa, which would only compound the problem.”
Hasslebeck then asked if a “less extreme” measure could be considered, like flights that aren’t medical in nature having to go through an “approval process.”
“But what about a partial ban – a closing of our borders”? Hasslbeck additionally asked.
“A closing of our borders? I’m sorry, I don’t know what you mean by that,” Fauci said incredulously.
“Flights that are specific to helping the situation as you just deemed important, which many Americans would agree with you, sir,” Hasselbeck replied. “But what about any other flights, just restricted?”
“You have Americans [in West Africa], you have business people there, people of dual citizenship who have to go back and forth,” he shot back. “It’s completely impractical. In fact, from a public health standpoint, not helpful to do that. And I think every public health official feels that way.”
Watch the exchange in the video below: