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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Chris Cuomo On His Fight Against Coronavirus; CDC Recommends "Cloth Face Coverings" In Public; Sailors Cheer For Navy Captain Who Sounded COVID-19 Alarm. Aired 9-10p ET
Aired April 3, 2020 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening. Welcome to our second hour of 360.
Tonight, another grim milestone, for the first time, more than a 1,000 have died in one day in the United States. This moment, 1,419 people, the most in a single day, for this country, 7,402 dead in the United States overall, total cases now, 276,467, those are the numbers. There are people behind all those numbers. You have to underscore the sharp rise.
An emergency alert went out on New York City cellphones this evening, "Attention all healthcare workers: New York City is seeking licensed healthcare workers to support healthcare facilities in need."
According to the New York Times, the number of cases in the city has almost doubled in a week, the number hospitalized, the number on ventilators more than doubled.
Today, the President announced new CDC guidance recommending the use of face coverings for all Americans. He says it's not something he'll be doing. He repeatedly said he won't be following that guideline.
We'll talk about the new guidance with the Mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, who's already urged his residents to wear them.
Also, we have a report on the U.S. Navy Aircraft Carrier Captain who lost his command after informing his superiors of the threat the virus posed aboard his vessel.
We start tonight with an acknowledgement of who's not here at the top of this program, most every night, it's Chris Cuomo, to continue telling the news. He's now at home, having contracted COVID-19. Obviously, he joins us now. Joining us again, this hour, Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
Christopher, how you're feeling?
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST, CUOMO PRIME TIME: How are you doing, fellas? I'm doing better than I deserve.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Chris.
C. CUOMO: I've - I've learned - Sanjay told me a few days ago, everything takes a few days to sync in with me. You can't wake up expecting to be better, you know, like you have a cold or a virus. You get depressed because it's going to be a long slog, and I accept that now.
I get that this is going to be a long fight. I've talked to a lot of people who have the virus. I know I'm looking, you know, at about twice the time I've had so far, so that's what it is, you know, and I'm lucky, and I'm loved, and I just go day by day.
GUPTA: Hey, Chris, I mean you - you are loved. I got to say everyone - I got so many emails, asking me today about how you were doing, so - so you should know that.
I'm trying to get a sense though, Chris. I mean, and - and all kidding aside, you really should - should take time off, I mean, you know, just to take care of yourself. I realize you're stuck in your basement down there.
But are you - are you worried? I mean, you know statistically you're, I mean, very, very likely to - to get through this, and recover, and all that. And I know you realize that. But how - what is your sort of - how worried are you?
C. CUOMO: I'm fairly worried, one, that my kids and my wife are still going to get it. My wife is taking care of me, and that is an amazing act of love, and we're doing everything we can. But, you know, so that's a constant concern.
Sanjay, I see the 80 percent a little differently than I used to, which is, yes, 80 percent will get this, a lot of them will be asymptomatic, or they'll get through, and there's all these different courses.
But, you know, now, I got my kids showing me these little cutouts on the - on social media of - of mothers who die and 30-year-olds who die, and 50-year olds who die and, you know, there's this acute awareness and appreciation.
You know, I woke up this morning, and I didn't hear my son's quad anymore. He'd been riding around. All a sudden, I didn't hear it. And he was watching me sleep. And I knew he was watching me because he was worried. So, you know, that gets you, and you don't want that for them.
And what I'm worried about is duration. And my fear is that I'm going to get through this, and then I'm going to get something else, these super infections you guys talk about, and like pneumonia, or something like that, and I'll have another 10 days, and more time without the family.
And I know that's what gets people all across the country. I've had so many people share their stories with me. That's my fear now like how will I handle that? How will I handle another three weeks of this? That's what I try to not focus on because it scares me.
COOPER: You know, one of the things that always gets me through being sick is sort of the realization like "Oh, there's some medicine I can take, and it's just a matter of time before that kicks in."
Obviously, that's not the case with something like this. How do you, I mean, how you've been sleeping? How do you kind of get through the - the day?
C. CUOMO: Well, you know, you're kind of deadweight, you know, all day long.
You know, I haven't watched any Netflix series. I haven't read anything other than online, and trying to stay appraised, and talk to other people because I'm so lethargic that I can like stare outside, and like an hour and a half goes by.
I think I took a 10-minute nap, and it was 3.5 hours. I change my clothes like seven times a day because I just--
COOPER: Why? Because you're sweating so much?
C. CUOMO: --sweat, just sweat through things. Every time I drink something hot, which they say is important to do, I just sweat.
So, it's a really surreal existence like I'm not bored because I'm like barely aware of what's going on. It takes almost all my energy to do a simple hit like this, and I'm not even really having to prepare, except existing.
So, I'm taking everything. My wife is a Wellness person, you know, she runs this business where she's learning about homeopathic and all these different things, so she's given me a ton of stuff. I don't even ask what it is. I just take what she tells me to take. But there is no medicine other than Tylenol.
And yes, people talk about the Hydroxychloroquine and all that. And my feeling is this. I don't want to take a risk of taking something while I'm still fighting through this that might take me in a bad direction. I don't need it. I know other people are doing it because they're at a different point of desperation. I do not judge anybody's choices.
I totally get why you'd be afraid enough to want to try something with the risk. But I don't have any answers for anybody other than this newfound acceptance.
I know I'm in a fight. I don't wake up thinking that I'm going to feel better. I don't look at my fever. I'm not upset when I have a fever. I know I have a fever. I know I'm going to have a fever tonight.
I know the Beast comes at night. I know the night's going to suck. I know I'm not going to sleep through the night, and that's how it is, man. And then, tomorrow, you know, you get after it again, and that's the way you got to be.
GUPTA: You know, just so - so people at home know, Chris, and you and I've talked about this. We talk on the phone quite a bit. But, you know, people, you know, again, mostly will recover. People are mostly being asked to recover at home.
But there are some things that, you know, if - if this is starting to happen should think about getting, you know, talking to the doctor. If you're having obviously any kind of chest pain, which you had, I know that first night, but went away.
Shortness of breath, if you - if you feel like your sensorium, you know, like your ability to focus or concentrate is - is off, you know, that - that's a concerning sign.
And then any kind of bluish tint to your lips, that just means you're not getting enough oxygen. You're obviously checking your oxygen. Those are serious signs, obviously, Chris. And I know at - at times you've had these sorts of things.
But today, compared to yesterday, compared to the day before, is there a way to assess your trajectory? Are you - are you - are you the same? Are you - are you worse? How do you feel about that?
C. CUOMO: Well, first of all, thank you for teaching me a new word. You know, Coop has got that steel look working, but he didn't know what sensorium meant either when you said it. I don't care--
COOPER: I still don't.
C. CUOMO: I don't care how--
COOPER: I still don't know what--
C. CUOMO: I don't care how straight-faced you look.
COOPER: I was just - I was--
C. CUOMO: And I definitely--
COOPER: You know what I was thinking during that? I was like mental note, "Look that word up."
C. CUOMO: I was like yes, my sensorium, my sensorium was all sideways, you know. I can't say that enough.
GUPTA: It's what--
C. CUOMO: But, listen, I - I think that I'm doing all these things that you tell me to do, Sanjay. You are a gift to me, as a friend, and as counsel. And, you know, it's no secret that, you know, Anthony Fauci has been a
friend of the family for a long time. And I have all these big shots checking to see how I am. And I know it matters that people are looking to see. They're also afraid of this boogeyman.
But, you know, your focus is not right. You're not a 100 percent. You're just not a 100 percent. And I think that people have to know that. And you have to decide what you're going to accept, and what you're not going to accept.
Frankly, I get a lot more hot and bothered listening to what the government is telling us journalistically, when it doesn't make sense, than I do about my own situation, you know, and I think it's feeding people's powerlessness.
But I know I have to be careful. And it's frustrating, buddy, because I can't control it, you know.
COOPER: Yes. I'm not sure you want to listen to a lot of - some of the statements coming out, you know, when you're sick. I think you need all your strength for, you know, for that kind of thing.
C. CUOMO: Well I mean but people talk to me about it, man. You know, they say - because what's spooking people? Why are people watching CNN's coverage, especially with you guys so much right now?
Because it doesn't make sense that on the one hand, Pete Navarro, who look, he's a nice guy. We all have good working relationships with him. He makes himself available. He can't answer anything that is a bad situation for the government, but he can talk your ear off about things that are completely beside the point.
C. CUOMO: There is an obvious functional analysis here that when it was time to build the wall, this President used mechanisms - mechanisms and urgency that he hasn't even come close to approaching in this situation. Why? It doesn't make any sense to people.
Watching governors not get condemned by this President, the guy in Georgia saying, "Oh, I just found out that, you know, you can be asymptomatic."
C. CUOMO: Really? Really? My 10-year old knows that. He just learned it? The guy in Tennessee who says "Well, you know, there's a lot of different research on social distance." Really? No, there isn't.
They know these things. Why isn't the President on them? To that, that's more fearful, that's scarier to me than the virus.
COOPER: Yes. Chris, just finally--
C. CUOMO: You know.
COOPER: --how do - I mean, how do you communicate with your family? I mean how do you - you talked about your son watching you sleep, which breaks my heart.
C. CUOMO: No kidding, man.
C. CUOMO: I go like this. Hey, Cristina?
CRISTINA GREEVEN CUOMO, CHRIS CUOMO'S WIFE: Yes?
C. CUOMO: How we doing up there, all right?
CRISTINA GREEVEN CUOMO: We are fine.
C. CUOMO: All right. Anderson just wanted to see how we communicate. There it is.
COOPER: Yes, OK.
C. CUOMO: How is - how is that from a sensorium perspective?
COOPER: I'd say--
C. CUOMO: There - there she is.
C. CUOMO: That's as close as she's allowed to come.
COOPER: Chris? Sometime we have to do a study on how like--
C. CUOMO: See the gloves?
COOPER: --how you and I both grew up, and communication in your house versus communication in my house. Communication in my house was like small whispers and like occasional--
C. CUOMO: Uh-oh.
COOPER: --like leaving notes to each other.
C. CUOMO: Uh-oh. That's it.
COOPER: That's as close--
C. CUOMO: You better go bleach that entire arm. That's as - that's as much of her as I've seen in - in nine days.
And the yellow dog will come downstairs. And then I think she sprays him with Clorox. The black dog - we have the yellow dog and the black dog. The black dog is more afraid of the virus.
And the kids sit up there. Today, we had our first - the - the kids are more keenly aware of this now. And Bella came down today, and she wanted to do karaoke singing, and I really can't, like I don't have enough wind for that.
So, we kind of like got through that. She saw it wasn't something for her to be upset about. You know, I just - I've been laying down a lot and, you know, this takes something out of you.
So, I'm trying to stay close emotionally without letting them get freaked out. But I have to tell you, Anderson, my - my heart goes out to people all over this country and this world that imagine not being able to be there for the ones you love.
There's so many people who are sick, are having to take care of their kids at the same time, they're worried about their kids, and their spouses, and whether they're going to be able to work again, and they can't work because now they have to stay home, on top of the virus.
C. CUOMO: There are so many of us that are dealing with such overwhelming situations.
That's what fuels my urgency, not just to come on with you good guys, but to try to get back to hold our government to account to give us better answers because there are too many people in too hard away for too long.
COOPER: Yes. Chris--
GUPTA: You - they told you how long Chris they think before you - oh sorry.
COOPER: No, no.
GUPTA: I know we're running out of time.
COOPER: No, no.
GUPTA: How long do they think before you're going to get to recover, Chris?
C. CUOMO: You are "They." You tell me. You're the guy I'm waiting for,
C. CUOMO: So tell me.
GUPTA: I know. Well I'll tell you what I think. But your doctors--
C. CUOMO: They say I need no fever for 72 hours and then maybe seven to 10 days, I'll be quarantined after that, you know. And I can't see myself not having a fever for 72 hours. I haven't not had a fever for 72 minutes. So, I just take it.
C. CUOMO: I just take it one day at a time. I'm lucky. I'm strong. I got people who love me. I got a reason, you know, to want to get through this, and that's all I can control.
COOPER: If you could--
GUPTA: And it's a long course. We're thinking about you.
COOPER: If you guys could just stay there, we need to take a break in a moment. We want to continue this discussion though with a Paramedic from the New York Fire Department who's contracted the virus as well. So Chris, if you could still hang out.
Later, the Mayor of Los Angeles joins me, Eric Garcetti. I'll discuss the news we mentioned earlier about the new guidance from the CDC on face coverings and what President Trump said about it.
COOPER: Back with me, Sanjay Gupta, and our colleague, Chris Cuomo.
Before the break, we were discussing the physical and mental toll of the Coronavirus, as well as the isolation it also brings. Our next guest has also contracted the virus, as a Paramedic with the New York Fire Department. Joining us is Aline Bocanegra-Reich.
Aline, it's great to see you again. I talked to you, I think, it was yesterday. You're here with Chris and Sanjay. How are you - how are you feeling tonight?
ALINE BOCANEGRA-REICH, FDNY PARAMEDIC IN QUARANTINE WITH COVID-19: Tonight, I am actually feeling a lot better than I have been for the past week all around. The coughing fits are less.
COOPER: Chris was saying for him the nights--
BOCANEGRA-REICH: The breathing is much better after some--
COOPER: Chris was saying for him, the nights are particularly bad. Is that the case for you?
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Yes. The nights are the worse. The nights and - and waking up.
COOPER: And how's your husband doing because I know he tested positive as well? I think he was a little bit milder case than you.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Yes. He had a milder case. He had a cough. He definitely had the chills. He had the fevers. He had a lot of chest pressure as well. We kept an eye on him the whole time because I wanted to make sure it wasn't cardiac-related. But he's doing much better, thank God.
COOPER: Chris, you know, you were talking about--
GUPTA: Hey, Aline, it's--
COOPER: Go ahead. Go ahead, Sanjay.
GUPTA: Sorry. I was just saying, Aline, I know you have a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old, I believe, at home as well. And so, had they been healthy? Have they - they had any signs of illness at all?
BOCANEGRA-REICH: My 2-year-old had a fever three nights ago. And he was very - he was just - you couldn't convince the kid that the world was OK. He was just screaming until he finally went to sleep, yes.
GUPTA: I'm sorry.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: I had to give him some Acetaminophen, and he calmed down a little bit. But he - he was not OK. Thank God, you know, it didn't come back, and it hasn't come back. But I was very - I was deathly afraid that he was going to go through what I went through.
COOPER: Chris, you were saying that, you know, you've been in touch with a lot of people who are also positive, or who were positive, or who were still - who are in confinement now, and that that's helpful that it's helpful kind of having that sense of community.
C. CUOMO: Yes, it is. But it's about the context also like, you know, what Bocanegra is doing - Bocanegra-Reich, right, your married name is Reich, Bocanegra-Reich, that's your full last name, right?
C. CUOMO: Reich.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Reich, yes.
C. CUOMO: Bocanegra-Reich.
C. CUOMO: What she's doing with her husband, I'm amazed. You know what I mean? They're taking care of two little kids, at the same time--
C. CUOMO: --that she's battling the virus. That's how you know she's a Paramedic. You know what I mean?
That's the kind of dedication that a first responder has that she could handle that kind because I know she may be getting better, but she's not saying she feels good. She's saying that she doesn't feel as bad as she did. And I'm just amazed by that.
And I think it's so empowering for people to know that oh, all right, so not only am I just sitting around, you know, like basically just collecting dust most of the day. But this young lady is doing the same thing taking care of her family. She's got her husband there. I guarantee he's not doing as much. And
it's empowering to know that people can get through it with the kind of bravery that only a first responder would have.
COOPER: Yes. Hey you - have you thought about, you know, at some point, obviously there's the discussion of, you know, going back to work.
That's got to be, I don't know, how do you - how do you see that, just the thought of that at this point, given all the stuff you would have to face, and the lack of, you know, supplies?
BOCANEGRA-REICH: So, I'm going to - I'm going to give you something that not a lot of people would - would want to speak about. But honestly, at this point, it's the big elephant in the room.
And honestly, I am very afraid of going back to work and possibly contracting this again. From what I've heard, it's worse the second time around, and also with the lack of instruments that we need.
We don't have - PPE needs are not going to be met. They haven't been met. We're in danger every single day. We're in danger every single day, and we still have to figure out a way to feed our family because we pay - we are paid so poorly.
And I - I just don't understand. I don't get it. We are in. We are it right now. 4,000 EMS members, women and - and men, and unfortunately we're taking the back burner when it comes to talk about a contract.
COOPER: Well contract--
BOCANEGRA-REICH: I don't understand.
COOPER: Contract with - with the City.
Well, you know, the thing about what you do, and EMTs, and firefighters, you're the front-line of the front-line.
I mean, before doctors see patients, you're the folks who arrive in people's homes, and are having to determine, first of all, how close can I get to this person, and also is this person somebody who needs to go to the hospital, or is this person somebody who is sick, but can still stay at home?
I mean you're the - you are the pointy edge of - of the - the spear here. I mean that's a particular kind of burden that - that EMTs, and paramedics, and firefighters, have right now.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: I don't know how officials can expect so much from us, and still look us in the eye, and say we should not talk about a contract at this moment. Then when? Because my time, as this virus has shown me, is very, very fragile, and very short.
C. CUOMO: Listen, I think you're right. I think we have the same kinds of conversations around other kinds of disasters about what policy changes would make a difference.
People always say "Well let's respect the situation." That is respecting the situation. You shouldn't have to go back to work if you can't be safe. You got two little ones at home, and they have to come first.
C. CUOMO: They're what motivate your existence in the first place, the same thing with your husband.
And if they can't guarantee you that you're going to have the equipment you need, to do those 9-1-1 calls that are coming in, in bigger and bigger waves and, Sanjay can tell you, that's going to increase.
You know this already. That volume is going to be one of the first places we see this apex, they're talking about. It's not fair to you. And look, you know, I know your contract's with the city.
But you know who my brother is, and I know that he's aware of that, and that's why he says he's fighting for so much PPE, and then we talk to the federal government, and they say "It's all great. And the State should have it handled."
None of its getting done the right way, and you are proof of that, and you shouldn't have to go back to work if they can't keep you safe. It's not fair to you or your family.
COOPER: Well this is what I don't understand, Chris. And I mean, you know, you've looked into this, you know, to the - the supply chain problem probably closer than - than any of us. I just do not understand.
You know, Hurricane Katrina, we were complaining about there weren't enough body bags or refrigerated trucks, there weren't enough pre- positioned supplies. And I get, you know, back in 2009, they didn't replenish the - the Stockpile. I get that.
But, you know, this Administration has also had three years. They were warned. Everybody knew. We've all talked about pandemics. Sanjay and I were in Cameroon 10 years ago, out with hunters, talking about zoonotic viruses, and talking about the next pandemic.
We've all known this is going to happen, and it's going to happen again. I just I've yet to hear anyone from the federal government explaining--
COOPER: --where is the equipment, where is it actually being made, and why - I mean, it's now been, you know, two months.
You know, we had a lost month of February. We've had a whole - now, we've had all the months - month of March. Where is the equipment, you know, that's supposedly in the pipeline? You hear all these, you know--
C. CUOMO: And they'll tell you they have enough.
COOPER: --individual factories are building it.
C. CUOMO: You don't. They--
COOPER: But - but there's no time on.
C. CUOMO: They'll tell you they have enough. They - they'll say "Oh, right now, the FDNY is good. They're good right now. They don't need any more right now. When they need more, we'll get them more."
No, she doesn't have enough right now. We all see the story circulating on of people who are in the hospital saying "I'm going to have to quit my job. I don't have masks in the ICU."
Look, people know that it's BS, OK? Nobody's being fooled by this. America is watching news right now obsessively. There's nothing else to do, and there's nothing else that matters more, and none of it adds up.
C. CUOMO: And, you know, you don't have to be a paramedic on the front-line, Sanjay, to know it. Something's not making sense--
C. CUOMO: --because everybody says they're doing everything. And everyone we need to have this stuff doesn't have enough. It makes no sense.
GUPTA: It's got to be particularly, I'm sure, frustrating for Aline.
GUPTA: You know, because, you know, Anderson, even if they didn't fill the Stockpile, and there's all sorts of different conversations about that.
But, as you point out, we've known, you know, we were asking about ventilators and personal protective equipment, since January, to - to have these announcements now that we're going to start doing this now, three months later.
Forget about the Stockpile for a second. These last three months have really been a waste as well. And I'm sure that's got to be infuriating for you, Aline.
COOPER: Yes. Aline--
C. CUOMO: I bet you if Aline were - I bet you if Aline were in charge, Coop, I bet you, if she were charge of the federal government, she'd be waiving that National Production Act all over the place. She'd be going to every big company--
C. CUOMO: --and saying who can make ventilators right now? Who wants the contract?
C. CUOMO: Because I'm getting ready to pay you right now.
COOPER: Aline, what's your take in all this?
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Life. It's definitely this is life - a matter of life and death. This is not - I have a very dear friend of mine, who has fallen so ill that he's on a respirator. He put - he was put on a respirator today. I'm asking the world for prayers for him. He--
COOPER: What's - what's his name?
BOCANEGRA-REICH: His name is Carlos Peliza (ph). He is a Navy man, and he has been 14 years with us here in the - in the Fire Department. Great man! I pray that his family and - and all of our FDNY family understands how this is a big problem, and this is only going to get worse.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: And we don't have what we need. We do not. We're far from it when we're all scared, and we're all going to work scared.
COOPER: Aline, my heart goes out to you. I hope you get better soon, and your husband, and I hope your family remains safe.
And your - yes, I just - the entire family of paramedics and EMTs and firefighters, I just wish you, you know, you just got to keep doing what you're doing, and - and you got to get better, and we all need you, and we're all in this together. Thank you so much for everything.
GUPTA: Thank you for what you're doing.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Thank you very much.
GUPTA: Thank you.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Thank you so much, thank you to a better--
C. CUOMO: Best to the babies.
COOPER: All right.
BOCANEGRA-REICH: Thank you. Yours as well, take care.
COOPER: Aline Bocanegra-Reich. Chris, thanks so much. Sanjay, thank you as well. We'll-- GUPTA: You got it.
COOPER: --we'll talk later.
The streets of Los Angeles are eerily empty as many other major American cities are because of the Coronavirus. Up next, I'll talk with the Los Angeles Mayor, Eric Garcetti.
And later, a physician talks about Coronavirus testing and why there are wildly varying times to get results.
COOPER: Since we began this hour of the broadcast, 35 minutes ago, at least four more Americans have died. The total for today is now 1,423. It's the single most people to die in a single day in - it's the most people to die in a single day in the United States.
The pandemic, of course, not really limited to the hotspots in the Northeast, and other parts of the country.
It's also threatening Los Angeles, where Mayor Eric Garcetti has said that those non-essential businesses who decide to remain open could have their water and electricity cut off. Mayor Garcetti joins us now.
Thanks for being with us. How is the City of Los Angeles doing tonight? Where are you in this?
MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI, LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Well I think we're strong. I think we're steeled. And I think we're scared. That's the honest answer, Anderson. We see, in the last two days, as many cases as we had in the first 23 days of this crisis.
And while we had a good week, we went very early with our physical distancing. We went very early with everything from this week, face covering, and stuff that's showing some flattening of the curve.
There's still going to be an increase of cases, and we're about 11 days behind New York, in terms of our per capita deaths, 14 days in terms of the cases.
So, I think that, right now, we're just doing everything we can to abide by this, to enforce it, and to try to help one another, and show some love for one another in a very difficult moment.
COOPER: You know, that's the thing. I mean, you know, I say a lot of - you know, and it's a cliche, we're all in this together, and it's true, but that - that's both a blessing and a curse.
We're all in this together, and which means we can help each other, but we're all in this together, and that means if somebody else isn't doing their part, then it impacts us all.
When you look around the country, and see states that still haven't, you know, that don't have stay-at-home orders in place, the President today saying well those states - those are places that aren't in jeopardy, that just doesn't scientifically, that just doesn't make any sense to me.
GARCETTI: It's unthinkable, Anderson. I was on a phone call with about 200-plus mayors two weeks ago, as we had already taken 60 percent of our actions, and we are on the verge of - of going all the way.
And I told all of them, adopt the stay-at-home order now. It doesn't matter if you don't have a single case.
My dear friend is the Mayor of Topeka, Kansas, Michelle De La Isla, before they had one verified case, a week later, did that, because my message was you can't build a moat around your city.
There's no force field preventing in your city, or state, or your country, from a virus coming in. We have to take these measures as quickly as possible. Nobody's ever going to fault you for going too quick.
But the lives lost are going to be the result of us going too slowly. So, when it feels wrong, it's the right time to do it. By the time it feels right, it's too late.
COOPER: You - as a city, you recommended the wearing of non-surgical face masks earlier this week, which is certainly ahead of the - the federal government. How did you decide that that was an important step in - in virus prevention?
GARCETTI: Yes. And we're calling it face coverings just so people won't get confused with medical masks that we absolutely need to protect and preserve for our employees.
It was heart-wrenching listening to the Paramedic who you just interviewed, and we have the same situations here, coming up, only a couple weeks of supply.
It seemed clear to me that in places like Czech Republic, and places like Taiwan, and other places, where there was this guidance, and everybody said, "Look, it can't stop any virus from coming through, including COVID-19, but it will stop droplets. And it's not so much to protect you, but to protect others from you, especially people who are asymptomatic, but maybe contagious."
And even if it helps 1 percent, Anderson, isn't that life worth protecting, let alone if it helps 5 or 10 percent. So, I kept waiting for this. But, like many things, I think cities have been leading. We've been kind of unafraid to do this.
And looking at history, I noticed a 100 years ago, everybody who acted swiftly, when there was this Spanish Flu, came out of this better, and quicker, and with fewer deaths.
So, I think anybody who is still out there, an elected official waiting, or biding their time, or thinking this is partisan, or a Blue, Red state kind of thing, get over yourself, and do it, save lives now.
COOPER: Do you have any sense - I mean nobody has an answer for the timeline of this.
But, you know, one of the things that just concerns me, it is not one of those immediate concerns, but is, you know, this draws out through the summer, and then - then the cold weather comes around, and then there's another wave of it.
And I mean it does seem - to think that long ahead is almost exhausting, and I find myself just deciding OK, I'm just going to focus, you know, day-to-day or week-to-week.
How do you, as a leader, how do you think about this?
GARCETTI: Well I've been trying to speak the truth every evening in a - in a nightly address to my City, and tell people they should - early on, when people said, "Is this just going to be a few days or a couple weeks," I said, "No, I think it's at least two months."
And I said if we're successful in this, we can expect a second spike in the late fall or early winter. That's how viruses work. We better be more prepared as a nation. We better have the supply, is we better have the equipment, the personnel.
We better steel ourselves for a second and maybe even third round of this. But we also need to be nimble enough to know we're not going to flip a switch one day, and turn the economy back on.
But people who have been through this, especially as we get blood tests, and other things, can we feather some people back into the economy because there's so much suffering going on there that when the public health officials say this can be done, but we need to have the resources to test, and the ability to kind of certify people.
We have to know that we're going to come in and out of this. Life won't be back to normal fully, probably for 18 months. That's not to say we'll be at stay-at-home anywhere close to 18 months.
But we have to be prepared to listen to those professionals, go back indoors, when necessary, especially for the older and more vulnerable people.
COOPER: Yes. And testing is going to be essential, as you say, for that process. It's got to be rapid. It's got to be fast and accessible to - to everyone.
Mayor Garcetti, appreciate all you're doing. Thank you.
GARCETTI: Thank you, Anderson, strength and love.
Testing for the Coronavirus, of course, has expanded greatly over the past two or three weeks. And frankly, if it hadn't, that would be a crime. But the time it takes to get the results can vary widely. What accounts for the difference?
Joining me now is Dr. Rishi Desai, a Physician from Oakland, California. He's also the Chief Medical Officer of Osmosis, a Health Education platform.
Dr. Desai, thanks for being with us.
Today's Task Force briefing, Vice President Pence again painted, you know, basically a rosy picture about Coronavirus testing, saying more than 1.4 million tests have been performed across the country, and that thousands of machines across the country can now perform a 15- minute test, still made no acknowledgment that testing is still a huge challenge for the Americans who need it.
Talk about the importance still of testing because I think there's some people who think "Oh, that was kind of a last month problem."
DR. RISHI DESAI, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, OSMOSIS.ORG: Yes. No, it was a month - a last month problem that needed a last month solution. It just never came.
And so, what I'll say is that with testing, I actually just went to the CDC website a few minutes ago, and invite everyone, yourself, to go to it as well, it shows testing by day.
And you can see the testing that we do at public health laboratories, it peaked on March 17th. That was the highest number of specimens tested, according to the CDC data. After March 17th, they went back down. So, why is that?
DESAI: Why did it go from a peak of roughly 12,000 to back down to 10,000? That's because now we've got private companies coming in doing testing.
So, it went from a situation where we didn't have adequate testing, but we knew data about it, to now we have - we think we have more testing because the private industries come in to do it, but we have no data on that.
And so, we're reliant on essentially hearsay. And what I can tell you is that on the ground, as you just pointed out, we don't have the testing available at the levels that we need it at.
And so, the prior guest mentioned, you know, some states and counties think that they don't have cases. I bet they do. We just don't have testing to prove that they don't or that they do. We just don't know.
COOPER: And that's the thing, you know. Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx, when you - when you listen to them talk about the states that, you know, President Trump says don't have, or they're not in jeopardy, which is just not, you know, sensical, the doctors--
COOPER: --well the scientists will say well that's an opportunity for those states to - to use this time when they don't have a lot of cases that they know about--
COOPER: --to really do extensive testing, and do contact tracing.
But then, when you ask Fauci, "Well is that actually happening," when I asked him that last week, he said "Well actually no, it's not happening to the degree it needs to happen in those states."
So even that, you know, respite that those states think they have, they're not making the most of it. And the fact that, as you said--
COOPER: --that testing by CDC is going down, that just is more evidence of that.
DESAI: Yes. Exactly, exactly. I mean each day is lives lost, let's be very clear about that. Every single day, every minute, is lives lost, as you just pointed out.
And so, if that's the case, we need to use every minute, going forward, to figure out all these solutions around testing. We need to get widespread testing available. We need to get that data back, so we can track that data, and it's not happening.
COOPER: And - and as we're just saying with the Mayor, it's even essential even once this thing seems on the downward slope for us to be able to come out of lockdowns, we need that data to understand who and where and how to come out of lockdowns, and who and where and when to maybe go back into it, if it resurges.
DESAI: Here is the awesome thing about testing. There are different types of tests, right? There's the RT-PCR looking for the virus RNA. That looks for the actual culprit, the pathogen, kind of causing the disease.
There's also serology testing. And serology testing is maybe a really unsung hero here because if we can know who had COVID-19, not who has, but who had it, and is now immune to it, those are the people that may be able to get back out into the economy.
And, in fact, we talk about healthcare workers. You just had a segment that was poignant about a healthcare worker on the front-lines. What if we could get people that are resistant or immune now back on the front-lines?
DESAI: We still need to protect them. Let's be, you know, certain about that. But we can figure this out with serology as well.
COOPER: Yes. Dr. Desai, appreciate all you're doing, thank you very much.
COOPER: What sailors did today for the Navy Captain, as he left their ship, after being removed from command, essentially fired for sounding the alarm about Coronavirus on board his ship, that when we continue.
COOPER: We all know, of course, how deadly the Coronavirus can be, and the ventilators now, the center of the national discussion, how important they are. But decisions on how they're used, and when they're not, are fast approaching.
Here's CNN's Senior Investigative Correspondent, Drew Griffin.
DREW GRIFFIN, CNN SENIOR INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The horrifying pictures from inside New York hospitals show patients hooked up to the only machines keeping them alive. When the virus takes over the lungs, ventilators take over the breathing. Without them, immediately when needed, the prognosis is dim.
MEGAN SCHLANSER, METRO DETROIT NURSE: It's bad. You can watch a patient go from breathing room air to, 72 hours later, needing to be intubated.
GRIFFIN (voice-over): So far, hospitals have kept pace, but barely. The situation's so bleak. The U.S. government put out a video on treating two patients with one ventilator.
CHARLENE IRVIN BABCOCK, ASCENSION ST. JOHN HOSPITAL: You obviously wouldn't do it unless you're in dire circumstances.
GRIFFIN (voice-over): But the dire circumstances are here. States and the federal government are in a bidding war for ventilators made in China.
GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D-NY): We can't get any more ventilators.
GRIFFIN (voice-over): And it is time now to prepare for what may be the inevitable. This article in the New England Journal of Medicine was written to prepare doctors in the event they must choose who gets a life-saving ventilator, and who does not. Robert Truog is one of the authors.
DR. ROBERT TRUOG, DIRECTOR, HARVARD CENTER FOR BIOETHICS: I worked all weekend on - on helping on a number of them. And hospitals now, many hospitals have these in place. So, I think that it's going to be extremely difficult. GRIFFIN (on camera): Unbelievably difficult for those physicians who have to make the call.
TRUOG: That's right and, of course, the families and patients as well. These are life-and-death decisions. And it's going to cause a tremendous amount of suffering if we get there.
GRIFFIN (voice-over): The decision, who lives, who dies, would come down to a point system.
The elderly, patients diagnosed with cancer, COPD, diabetes, any chronic lung or terminal illness, would be eligible for care, but score lower than those who are otherwise healthy with a potential longer life to live.
The points would determine what's in the best interest of society, not just the individual.
TRUOG: Everybody is eligible. But beyond that point, then it does come down to giving it to those people where we're either going to save the most number of lives, or the most number of life years. And yes, it does mean that people with other severe illnesses will receive a lower priority score.
GRIFFIN (voice-over): In New Orleans, where the virus is predicted to get even worse, there are enough ventilators now. But within days, they could be out.
DR. JOSEPH KANTER, ASSISTANT STATE HEALTH OFFICER, LOUISIANA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH: And then, after that, you begin having very challenging conversations about how you allocate the vents, and you think about which patient would benefit the most. And that's a horrifying place for anyone to be in, and that would certainly be a damning indictment of our country.
COOPER: You know, Drew, they were making - talking about making this decision in Italy more than a month ago. The idea that now we're talking about that here is just horrifying.
Are the doctors who may have to make these decisions the same doctors who are treating the patients?
GRIFFIN: By design, no. So, the people who are caring for these patients would step aside, and then the designated physician of that Hospital would step in and make this horrendous call.
And Anderson, what is so infuriating about this is we were warned about this.
You know, CNN dug up 10 different government reports, from 2013 to 2015, all predicting that if we had a pandemic, just like the one we're having, the United States would not have enough ventilators on hand. And here we are, Anderson.
COOPER: Drew Griffin, Drew, thanks.
The Navy says nearly a 140 crew serving on board the aircraft carrier "Theodore Roosevelt" have tested positive for Coronavirus. This after its Captain Brett Crozier was relieved of his command because he sounded the alarm precisely about the Coronavirus on board.
Take a look at this, as he left his ship in Guam, his sailors cheered for him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(CROWD OF SAILORS, ABOARD THE USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT, CHEERING AND APPLAUDING THEIR OUSTED CAPTAIN, BRETT CROZIER, CHANTING "CAPTAIN CROZIER!, CAPTAIN CROZIER!")
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: They're cheering in support of him. CNN Pentagon Correspondent, Barbara Starr, joins me now.
So Barbara, why exactly was the Captain relieved of his duty?
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, according to the Navy, Anderson, he was relieved for two basic reasons. He failed to adhere to the so-called chain of command.
When he had this letter, expressing his very deep worries about - of the health of his forces, the health of the 4,000 sailors on board, he didn't go directly to his boss, but he sent an email, a letter, to a wide range of people, and then it leaked to the news media.
And let's face it, the Navy got embarrassed and thought too much information had gone out. They said he should have gone right to his boss. And, as a result of all of that, basically the charge against him, so to speak, is loss of confidence.
The Navy Secretary said he just didn't have the confidence in Captain Crozier to continue to command the ship that he didn't think he could be guaranteed that he could make good decisions, if he made this bad decision to tell about what was happening, in battle, perhaps.
Look, you only have to look at what happened with that crew as he left the command of the ship. They threw the notion of social distancing to the wind. Word swept through the ship that he was leaving at that time, and sailors rushed to the deck to give him the send-off that they felt he deserved. Anderson?
COOPER: Well I mean also isn't - I mean, this is a huge ship with extraordinary powers.
The idea that, I mean, they certainly had a lot of faith in him when they put him in command of this vessel. The idea that suddenly they've lost confidence just coincidentally after this letter surfaces seems odd. STARR: Well, you know, military culture, and that's what you're talking about here, is that when the top boss says he loses confidence in you, there's really no appeal of that. But, look, this is really far from over.
We already have several Democrats in Congress calling for an investigation. The Navy has - says it's going to start its own investigation. And that's a very interesting thing. Preliminary investigation, the results already will be due on Monday.
COOPER: All right, Barbara Starr, we'll be right back, thank you.
COOPER: Want to end this broadcast, and this week, with some very happy news.
Dr. Leana Wen, an Emergency Room Physician, a frequent presence here on 360, in fact, she's often a guest on our CNN Global Town Halls on the Coronavirus, she was with us just last night.
Well, fast forward, 24 hours, we are happy to announce that Dr. Wen is now the proud mom of a beautiful baby girl, Isabel Wen Walker. That is mother and child who are doing just fine.
Technically, I guess, Isabel Wen Walker was a guest on the last show as well because well she wasn't present, but she was present. Anyway, Dr. Wen, congratulations to you and your family, it's extraordinary.