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If This Happens, COVID Will Keep Killing Us, Warns CDC Chief

Things could go “in one of two directions” she revealed.
FACT CHECKED BY Alek Korab
Rochelle Walensky

Last week, Texas and Mississippi opted to end their mask mandates and fully reopened businesses back to 100 percent. However, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continue to warn that returning to life as usual in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic could have devastating results, despite the fact that three vaccines are currently available and Americans are getting vaccinated daily. During an interview with NPR, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the CDC, warned of a potential surge, and revealed how it could be effectively prevented. Read on to hear what she had to say—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus

We Have "Too Many Cases" Now to Pull Back Restrictions, Warns CDC Chief

Dr. Walensky started by revealing that the number of infections declined over the last couple of weeks, that the numbers seem to be stabilizing to around 60,000-70,000 infections per day, "too many cases to try and put an end to this pandemic," she points out. And, now that the more highly transmissible variants are quickly becoming dominant, it "really threatens the progress that we've been making to date," she points out. "And so with these levels of virus circulating and the hyper transmissible strain, I'm just worried about what the future looks like." 

That, paired with the undeniable fatigue being demonstrated by the public, could be a recipe for disaster. "It's such an important point that we are all exhausted," she said. "We are all exhausted, and this is not the message that I want to be sending as I first enter into this new position."

She pointed out that we are so close to the end of the pandemic—if we continue walking the walk. "Six months ago, we didn't see any vision of what the future might look like. But today, the day after the President announced that by the end of May, we will have enough vaccine to vaccinate the entire country, there is a vision that there's a light at the end of the tunnel that we could vaccinate the entire country, that we really could get to a place where we don't have so much virus circulating. And so today in my mind is not the time to relax these things as exhaustive as we all are, because we do really see that real promise of getting to vaccinate everyone," she said.

However, we are at a crossroads. "I think the next two or three months could go in one of two directions," she revealed. "If things open up, if we're not really cautious, we could end up with a post spring break surge the way we saw a post Christmas surge. We could see much more disease, we could see much more deaths." 

However, "in an alternative vision," there is hope. "I see we really hunkered down for a couple of more months. We get so many people vaccinated and we get to a really great place by summer. And what I'm just encouraging people to do despite the exhaustion, and I feel it too, is to share the vision of that second place," she said. 

RELATED: If You Feel This You May Have Already Had COVID Says Dr. Fauci

How to Stay Safe During This Pandemic

So follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this pandemic, 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.

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