Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is “completely incorrect” to suggest vaccines are a personal choice with no broad implications, says Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease authority.
“If [DeSantis] feels that vaccines are not important for people, that they’re just important for some people, that’s completely incorrect,” Fauci said after being asked about DeSantis’ views during an interview Tuesday with CNN.
Vaccines have been the solution to public health crises such as smallpox, polio and measles, Fauci said — but they rely on wide adoption to work, he added.
“When you’re dealing with an outbreak of an infectious disease, it isn’t only about you,” Fauci said. “There’s a societal responsibility that we all have.”
DeSantis said in a news conference Friday that vaccines help people to avoid severe illness from COVID-19. But instead of saying everyone who’s eligible should be vaccinated, the governor added a caveat.
“At the end of the day though, it’s about your health and whether you want that protection or not,” DeSantis said. “It really doesn’t impact me or anyone else.”