"I cared about you, but I was worried about you. That’s the reason why I kept calling," Dr. Anthony Fauci told Chris Cuomo on his CNN show

By Georgia Slater and Georgia Slater
May 05, 2020 01:03 PM
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CNN host Chris Cuomo shared this week that Dr. Anthony Fauci kept in daily contact with the anchor's family during their battle with the novel coronavirus.

Fauci — director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a key member of President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force — joined Cuomo for Monday's episode of Cuomo Prime Time, where the host thanked the doctor for constantly checking in on his family.

"I have spoken to you, almost without exception, every day. And you have been calling me out of personal concern to make sure that I’m ok, that my wife was ok, my son was ok," Cuomo said. "Eleven o’clock at night. Later. Waiting for my show to end. Saturday. Sunday morning…the rare time you have with your family."

Cuomo and Fauci are longtime friends — the doctor said he's known the CNN host since he "was almost a kid."

"The fact is, you were going through some difficult times," Fauci said, explaining why he was constantly staying in touch with Cuomo.

"I cared about you, but I was worried about you. That’s the reason why I kept calling," he continued.

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Cuomo, 49, first revealed his positive COVID-19 diagnosis on March 31 and continued hosting his show from his basement in New York.

"I don’t think that people were really experiencing or realizing how you were really sucking it up to look relatively normal," Fauci said of Cuomo pushing through the virus to broadcast at home.

"But when you finished the show, and we would start chatting at 11, 11:30 at night, you were wiped out...I was concerned," Fauci, 79, admitted.

Cuomo — whose wife Cristina and 14-year-old son Mario tested positive for the virus in April — said that he "won't forget" Fauci's kind gestures.

"I appreciate it. I really do," he said. "I want people to know who they’re getting in Tony Fauci. It’s not just TV, it’s not just 30 years of excellence in the scientific field, it's the head and the heart that comes together in that body is the real deal, that’s why people believe in you."

Cristina was both “surprised and not surprised” when she developed COVID-19 symptoms 18 days after her husband noticed his own. The family had been careful once he got sick, moving Chris into the basement.

Credit: Mike Coppola/Getty

But their house has an open floor plan, and with no door blocking off the basement — only a staircase — Cristina started feeling intense sinus pressure in mid-April, before she tested positive.

She says she knows she is “lucky,” having had a far more mild case of COVID-19 than her husband and thousands of Americans. Now, Cristina is feeling “so much better,” as are Chris and Mario she told PEOPLE exclusively. Their two daughters, Bella and Carolina, have not shown any symptoms.

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