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Spanberger Statement on Coronavirus Meeting at the White House with Vice President Pence

Washington, March 3, 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today released the following statement after joining a bipartisan group of her colleagues at the White House to meet with Vice President Pence to discuss the administration’s response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak in the United States.

“In the last week, we’ve seen an increase in Coronavirus cases in the United States, and today I went to the White House to get updates on the status of the outbreak and our country’s ongoing response,” said Spanberger. “The Coronavirus does not distinguish between Democrats and Republicans, and at this moment, we must all be focused on ensuring that our country’s coordinated response is bringing together all available expertise and is driven by science and public health priorities. I appreciated the opportunity to speak with Vice President Pence and Dr. Deborah Birx at the White House today. I am heartened by the appointment of Dr. Birx as the Coronavirus response coordinator for the White House. Dr. Birx is a retired Army Colonel and immunologist who was appointed the U.S. Global HIV/AIDS coordinator under the Obama Administration. Dr. Birx brings decades of experience to her current role, and I was pleased to learn that she and the Vice President will be conducting daily press briefings to keep the American public informed. As I continue closely following this developing situation, I’ll keep advocating for robust resources for our local healthcare departments, updated guidance from trusted medical experts, and a long-term strategy for dealing with the Coronavirus.”

Last week, Spanberger questioned Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director Robert Redfield about the U.S. response to this growing public health emergency. And earlier last week, Spanberger called on the administration to appoint a point-person to coordinate a comprehensive, evidence-based U.S. response to Coronavirus.

The CDC provides the following guidance for Americans who want to help prevent the spread of the Coronavirus:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

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