Decline ‘starting to plateau’ at a ‘very high level’ of 60,000 to 70,000 per day, says top infectious disease expert
US’ top infectious disease expert has warned that easing coronavirus restrictions this early can cause another spike in the country.
The decline is “starting to plateau,” Anthony Fauci said on CBS’ Face the Nation, adding it is happening “at a very high level, plateauing at a level of 60 to 70,000 new cases per day is not an acceptable level.”
Fauci’s remarks came as Texas and Mississippi states lifted mask mandates and business capacity limits this week.
“So the message we’re saying is that we do want to come back carefully and slowly about pulling back on mitigation methods. But don’t turn that switch on and off because it really would be risky to have yet again another surge, which we do not want to happen because we’re plateauing at a- quite a high level,” the chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden said.
“We’re going in the right direction. We just need to hang in there a bit longer,” he continued.
The expert said they want to make sure people understand this “is not going to be indefinite.”
“We need to gradually pull back as we get more people vaccinated,” Fauci advised, saying that vaccinations are going to be dramatically increased by April and May.
He said by the end of May, the US will have enough vaccines to vaccinate everyone.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s data, about 90.4 million vaccine doses were administered across the country.
The US, the worst-hit country by the pandemic, has nearly 29 million cases and more than 525,000 deaths, a running tally of Johns Hopkins University shows.