After a bad fall and even worse winter, with surging COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths—now past 500,000 in America—the numbers have finally started to drop. However, while many are interpreting this as the pandemic being close to over, this isn’t necessarily the case. In an interview with Good Morning America’s George Stephanopoulos, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, warns that unless people continue to do their part in preventing the spread of the virus, things could turn back around for the worst. Read on to find out what he had to say—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You’ve Already Had Coronavirus.
Dr. Fauci Says the Pandemic is “Stunning” and We Need to All “Pitch In”
After Stephanopoulos rehashed some of the worst moments of the pandemic, Fauci took a moment to discuss how disturbed he is by how things went down. “It was just bad. It is bad now,” he said. “I think these numbers are so stunning.”
He explained that when he offered predictions back at the start of the pandemic, everyone thought he was blowing things out of proportion. “Remember back in the late winter and early spring of 2020, when we were saying we could get as high as 240,000 and people were thinking we were being hyperbolic about it?” he said. “And now here we are with a half a million deaths, just a stunning figure.”
He offered advice on how to move forward. “The only thing that I would just encourage all of us is that rather than looking back and saying, ‘What the heck happened here?’ just saying now let’s just go forward and be completely committed as a unified country to just go at this together,” he advised. “ This is a common enemy. We’ve all got to pitch in. We’re in some good shape now with the vaccines, but it’s going to be a race against the infections that keep coming.”
We need to “do two things and do it well,” he added. “One, continue to do the public health measures that we speak about all the time: the uniform wearing of masks, the physical distancing, the avoiding congregate settings. At the same time, as we do everything we can to get vaccines into the arms of people as quickly and as efficiently as possible. That is the weapons that we have against this horrible disease.”
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How to Stay Safe During the Pandemic
So follow Fauci’s fundamentals and help end this surge, no matter where you live—wear a face mask that fits snugly and is double layered, don’t travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don’t go indoors with people you’re not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don’t visit any of these 35 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch COVID.