Dr. Fauci Just Said the Words About COVID-19 You Never Wanted to Hear
Though there was a glimmer of hope about the virus, the nation's top immunologist also had this to say.
With dozens of states dealing with sharp spikes in coronavirus cases and hospitals in many metropolitan areas overwhelmed with more and more patients, the coronavirus has proven it's not slowing down anytime soon. Though many medical experts and public health officials have touted mask-wearing, hand-washing, and social distancing as the three key ways to stop COVID-19 from spreading further, many of us are wondering if the virus will ever really go away. On Tuesday, unfortunately, Anthony Fauci, MD, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), had something to say on that front that isn't exactly the conclusion we were hoping for. In his purview, the coronavirus is here to stay. "I don't really see us eradicating it," Fauci said during a webcast on Tuesday, July 21.
According to CNN, the nation's top immunologist did a webcast interview hosted by the TB Alliance on Tuesday and though he did bear some bad news, he was ultimately optimistic. Fauci went on to explain that "with a combination of good public health measures, a degree of global herd immunity, and a good vaccine—which I do hope and feel cautiously optimistic that we will get—I think when you put all three of those together, I think we will get very good control of this."
As for when we would get control of COVID-19, Fauci was more cautious. "Whether it's this year or next year, I'm not certain," he added. "But I think we will bring it down to such a low level that we will not be in the position that we're in right now for an extended period of time."
Amid an ongoing surge of coronavirus cases around the world, Fauci also recently said that there was "essentially no end in sight," during a virtual keynote address for the American Association for Cancer Research.
His comments echo those made Mike Ryan, MPH, MB BCh BAO, executive director of WHO's Health Emergencies Program, earlier this month. During a July 10 briefing, Ryan said: "In our current situation, it is very unlikely that we can eradicate or eliminate this virus."
There has been something of a debate over Fauci's comments lately, which some have deemed "alarmist." In a recent Instagram Live interview with Maria Shriver, Fauci pushed back politely on that assessment, saying, "I consider myself a realist, as opposed to an alarmist." If you want to stay safe from COVID-19, check out 13 Tips From Dr. Fauci on How You Can Avoid Coronavirus.