Biden Deploying Medical Teams To Six States Amid COVID Surge

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Shelby Talcott Senior White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden is sending medical teams to six states across the country in an effort to help hospitals overwhelmed by COVID-19 cases.

Biden will speak about these “surge deployments” during his morning remarks on the government’s COVID-19 response, White House assistant press secretary Kevin Munoz tweeted. New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Rhode Island, Michigan and New Mexico will be receiving this additional aid, Munoz noted.

“Since Thanksgiving – over 800 military and other federal emergency personnel have deployed to 24 states, Tribes and territories – including over 350 military doctors, nurses and medics helping staff hospitals,” Munoz wrote. “More than 14,000 National Guard are activated in 49 states to support.

Biden also plans to speak with the already-existing federal surge teams helping hospitals in Arizona, New York and Michigan.

In December, Biden announced his plan to prepare 1,000 military medical personnel to deploy to hospitals overwhelmed by COVID-19 cases in January and February. The surge deployments Biden will announce on Thursday marks the first wave of deployments. (RELATED: ‘A Matter Of When, Not If’: Fauci Says Definition Of Fully Vaccinated Will Change)

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Deanne Criswell will join Biden as he delivers remarks Thursday to Americans, the White House said.

Cases have reached over 780,000 a day in the U.S., according to The New York Times. The country has also seen a record high of around 142,000 Americans hospitalized with COVID-19.

Biden’s chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci, when speaking about the number of children in the hospital with the virus, previously cautioned against reading too much into the numbers.

“But the other important thing, is that if you look at the children who are hospitalized, many of them are hospitalized with COVID, as opposed to because of COVID,” Fauci said on MSNBC at the end of December.. “And what we mean by that, if a child goes in the hospital, they automatically get tested for COVID, and they get counted as a COVID hospitalized individual. When in fact, they may go in for a broken leg or appendicitis or something like that.”

Still, Fauci warned that Americans should not get complacent just a few days later, pointing out on ABC News that “it is much more relevant to focus on the hospitalizations as opposed to the total number of cases.”

“When you have multi-multi-multi-fold more people getting infected, the net amount is you’re still going to get a lot of people that are going to be needing hospitalization. And that’s the reason why we’re concerned about stressing and straining the hospital system,” he said.