Dr. Fauci Just Warned of "High Level" of COVID
Over the last month, the COVID-19 pandemic seems to have improved, but we are not at the finish line yet. During Wednesday's White House COVID-19 Response Team Briefing, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned that we "have not turned the corner" of the pandemic and that there is still a "high level" of COVID. Read on to hear everything they 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 We're "At the Corner," But Have Not Turned the Corner
Dr. Fauci explained that he is often asked, "are we turning the corner"? And, unfortunately, the answer is no. "My response is really more like, 'We are at the corner.' Whether or not we're going to be turning that corner still remains to be seen." He added that we "have a lot of challenges in front of us with regard to the high level of daily infections," noting that the number was up to 54,974 on Tuesday. "When you were at that level, I don't think you can declare victory and say, you've turned the corner," he pointed out.
CDC Chief is Concerned About Spring Breakers
While Dr. Walensky is "enthusiastic about the pace that vaccination is happening," she remains "guarded" due to the photos she is seeing of people on vacation—namely because most of the population isn't vaccinated. "What worries me is that while we have, you know, about 24% of the population that has received one dose and about 13% of the population that is fully vaccinated," she pointed out. "What concerns me is the footage of spring breakers and people who are not continuing to implement prevention strategies while we get fully scaled up. We're at 13%. We need to be much higher than that to feel like we have adequate protection around this country." So, while the early data is "really encouraging," she points out that "we're still hanging out at 55,000 cases a day," but "we're watching what's happening in people who are vacationing right now," which "concerns" her "a lot."
Dr. Fauci Said the Vaccines "Really Work"
Dr. Fauci points out that our best tool against the virus is vaccination. "You've got to continue to do what we're doing more vaccinations and continue to do public health measures until we actually do turn the corner," he says. "If you look at the level of infection and individuals who are doubly vaccinated with the vaccine, it was 0.05%. That's extremely low. That's where we want to be. When as a country we are at that level, we will have turned the corner."
Dr. Walensky Offers Hope: "This Is What We Are Fighting For"
Dr. Walensky also offered hope. "I continue to hear of so many uplifting stories about friends and families being able to reconnect after months or even a year apart, once they are fully vaccinated," she said. "This is what we're all fighting for—meeting your new grandchild for the first time, hugging a friend, having dinner with another family, we will get there. We are getting there. We are getting there at roughly two and a half million vaccinations a day. And we're getting new evidence about the positive effects of these vaccines every single day." She added that the majority of healthcare workers have been protected, rates of hospitalization are dropping for those in the 65-plus age range, and the majority of teachers are vaccinated with children heading back to school. "These findings should be a jolt of hope for all of us and to serve as a catalyst for everyone to roll up their sleeves when the vaccine is available," she said.
Do Your Part in Ending the 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.