Dr. Celine Gounder, a member of President-elect Joe Biden’s COVID task force, warned against Thanksgiving travel in a CNBC interview late Friday afternoon.
Gounder, who is a “practicing HIV/infectious diseases specialist and internist, epidemiologist (aka disease detective), journalist and filmmaker,” according to her own website’s biography, appeared on CNBC’s Squawk Box to discuss airline stocks.
“Traveling and spending time with people over the holidays is like pouring gasoline on a fire. It’s just not a good idea in the middle of a pandemic,” Gounder noted in the interview (full video, below).
The comment came on the heels of an earlier statement where Gounder stated that she was “Less concerned about the risk of the flying and more concerned that people are moving around.” She intimated that since people will likely be indoors, around familiar people it’s easy to let their guard down, thereby creating opportunities for virus transmission.
Gounder later hammered her point home in a tweet:
Biden’s COVID advisory board contains a variety of influential members of the medical community including Gounder as reported by CNN. Other prominent names include a former US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy and former FDA commissioner David Kessler.
As a decimated travel industry anxiously awaits what could be a busy travel holiday (albeit muted from prior years) the last thing travel providers want is more reasons for potential customers not to travel. This Thanksgiving many, including AAA, are still predicting that as many as 50 million Americans will travel, most by car, for the popular holiday.
Watch the full Gounder video below: