Dr. Anthony Fauci, the scientific lead in the president's coronavirus task force, has advised people to practice social distancing, but when asked whether asymptomatic strangers should hookup using apps such as Tinder and Grindr, Fauci said, “If you want to go a little bit more intimate, well, then that’s your choice regarding a risk.”
Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, made his remarks during an April 14 interview on Snapchat's "Good Luck America."
As reported by The New York Post, toward the end of the interview Fauci was asked, “If you’re swiping on a dating app like Tinder, or Bumble or Grindr, and you match with someone that you think is hot, and you’re just kind of like, ‘Maybe it’s fine if this one stranger comes over.’ What do you say to that person?”
Fauci replied, “You know, that’s tough, because that’s what’s called relative risk.”
“If you’re willing to take a risk -- and you know, everybody has their own tolerance for risks -- you could figure out if you want to meet somebody,” said Fauci. "And it depends on the level of interaction you want to have."
"If you're looking for a friend, sit in a room," he said. "Put a mask on and chat a bit."
He added, “If you want to go a little bit more intimate, well, then that’s your choice regarding a risk.”
Tinder is a dating/hookup app with a reported 57 million users worldwide in 190 countries. According to the Pew Research Center, an estimated 30% of U.S. adults have used Tinder.
Grindr is a dating/hookup app primarily for homosexuals. It reportedly has 27 million members and 3.6 million men who use the site daily. According to the CDC, 66% of new HIV diagnoses are the result of male-to-male sexual contact -- 24,909 new diagnoses in 2018.