Dr. Fauci Just Said Things Are About to Get Worse
After the devastating COVID-19 surge in the spring, which at its peak resulted in an average of 2,116 deaths daily, most Americans believed that the worst of the pandemic was behind us. However, over the last month it has become increasingly clear that is not the case. Per the latest CDC statistics, the average 7-day daily death toll has increased to 3,541—and, according to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, this number will only continue to climb. On Thursday, during a discussion with Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine's Medicine Grand Rounds, Fauci revealed that things will soon worsen. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.
We Are in a "Very, Very Difficult Situation"
"I think in order to just put it into some perspective, we are in a very, very difficult situation right now," Fauci confessed. "If you look at the trajectory of the curves of the surges that we've seen, as you know things in earnest began to be really serious or at least recognized to be serious as we got to the end of January, the beginning of February of 2020. So we really are just coming to the end of the first year of what is now historically the worst pandemic of an outbreak of a respiratory borne illness in 102 years since the infamous 1918 pandemic."
Infection, Hospitalization, and Death Statistics Are "Stunning"
The current numbers are "stunning," according to Fauci, but the most disturbing aspect is that people don't seem phased by them. "One of the issues of having been really gripped by this now for 11 months to almost a year, is that the numbers are so extraordinary that we've become numb to them."
He then gave a run down of the bone-chilling statistics. "As of yesterday, there are 360,000 deaths. We have had a situation where we now are averaging between 200,000 and 300,000 new infections per day and between 2,000 and 3,000 deaths per day. Every day is a new record for the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 —138,000 as of yesterday," he revealed.
The Healthcare System Is Overwhelmed
Fauci also touched upon the situation in Southern, California, where allocation is a reality. "There were some regions of the country that are really getting to the point of what we consider the unimaginable, where you actually have to triage and determine who is going to get taken care of and who was not. I used very specifically to the very difficult situation that's going on in California, particularly in LA County, where there are running out of beds and they have an exhausted staff working almost 24 hours a day," he said. "This is truly an extraordinary situation."
Things Will Get Worse
While the current situation is dire, Fauci expects the next few weeks will be even more devastating. "We expect it to get a bit worse as we get into the middle and end weeks of January because of the fact that after every single event that would bring people together in travel—be it the 4th of July, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and now the Christmas holidays—there's always a surge as people travel and congregate in social settings," he continued. "So the numbers that I gave you are very, very difficult to comprehend, they are extraordinary, and yet things could actually get a bit worse."
"There Is Light at the End of the Tunnel"
Fauci does point out, however, that there is hope in the form of vaccines. "On the other side of the coin, there is light at the end of the tunnel with regard to vaccinations. As you know, another record—we've made records very, very difficult records with regard to illness and death—but we also have a record with regard to vaccine accomplishments," he said. "You might recall that the sequence of the virus was put on a public database on January the ninth and in less than a year, in 11 months, we went from a sequence to actually having vaccines in the arms of individuals, vaccines that are not just any vaccine, but a vaccine that's 94 to 95% efficacious with a very good safety record."
However, getting the majority of the population vaccinated is going to be tricky. "The challenge now is to get the vaccine out and implemented in an efficient way so that we can get the overwhelming majority of our population vaccinated within a several month period, which will be the real gateway to the end of this terrible outbreak and would get us back to normal," he said. "So there's very disturbing news and there's some promising news."
How to Survive This Pandemic
As for yourself, follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this surge, no matter where you live—wear a face mask, 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.