“That’s incorrect,” Fauci, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, told “Today” host Savannah Guthrie.
“The reason why is you’re talking about yourself in a vacuum then,” Fauci explained. “You’re worried about yourself getting infected and the likelihood that you’re not going to get any symptoms. But you can get infected, and will get infected if you put yourself at risk.”
Healthy people can be infected with COVID-19 without showing symptoms, Fauci said, and they can “inadvertently and innocently then infect someone else who might infect someone who really could have a problem with a severe outcome.”
“So, if you want to only worry about yourself and not society, then that’s OK,” he said of the no-vaccination stance. “But if you’re saying to yourself, even if I get infected, I could do damage to somebody else even if I have no symptoms at all, and that’s the reason why you’ve got to be careful and get vaccinated.”
Fauci left no doubt when Guthrie specifically asked if young, healthy people should receive the shot.
“Absolutely,” he responded.
Some 80% of Americans need to be vaccinated to reach the level of herd immunity required to ward off newer, more contagious strains of the virus, Fauci said previously. About 30% of the population is now fully vaccinated.
Watch the video here:
“You can get infected, and will get infected, if you put yourself at risk.” -Dr. Anthony Fauci responding to podcast host Joe Rogan’s suggestion that young people not get the COVID-19 vaccine pic.twitter.com/6E02GI31VV
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) April 28, 2021
Rogan does not appear to have addressed the controversy surrounding his comments, which he made on an episode of his “Joe Rogan Experience” podcast released on Spotify Friday.
On the show, Rogan said “for the most part it’s safe to get vaccinated” against the coronavirus. But he added: “If you’re like 21 years old and you say to me, ‘Should I get vaccinated?’ I’ll go, ‘No.’ If you’re a healthy person and you’re exercising all the time and you’re young and you’re eating well, I don’t think you need to worry about this.”
Rogan signed a $100 million deal to move his show to Spotify last year. This month it emerged that the streaming giant had quietly removed 42 episodes, including controversial content .
Spotify’s Joe Rogan encourages "healthy" young people not to get a coronavirus vaccine. His show is Spotify's most popular podcast.
“If you're like 21 years old, and you say to me, should I get vaccinated? I'll go no.” pic.twitter.com/5dX98xUaHS
— Alex Paterson (@AlexPattyy) April 27, 2021
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.