Fauci said he's concerned recent spikes in COVID-19 cases could become a 'full blown outbreak' without proper testing and contact tracing
The leading US infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci said he was concerned that the increase in infections could turn into "full blown outbreaks" given the reopening, but hopes that "individual states can mitigate this".
He said it was not "inevitable" that a second wave or a massive wave of infections could occur in the fall, but it could be prevented if "the right way" was done with widespread testing and contact tracking.
The Trump administration did not have the same views as Fauci regarding the threat of the recent outbreaks. President Donald Trump blamed the rise in coronavirus cases for increased testing.
He said he does not see an early return to normal in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, citing the recent spikes in COVID-19 cases in the United States.
"I would hope to return to some normalcy within a year or so, but I don't think it will be this winter or fall. We will see it a little longer," Fauci told The Telegraph.
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The US infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci expressed concern that recent coronavirus spikes in the US could develop into "full blown outbreaks".
His outlook contrasted with the Trump administration's more positive outlook, saying that the emerging COVID-19 cases were just "embers" that needed to be wiped out.
Experts have pushed to establish a comprehensive test and contact tracking method to suppress and not just mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. Fauci repeated the feeling, saying that the question remains whether such a system will soon exist.
"The question is whether they will be able to do the appropriate and effective isolation and contact tracking to prevent this surge from becoming a complete outbreak. I am concerned that this will happen," Fauci told British newspaper The Telegraph's recent spikes in COVID-19 cases in the United States.
"I hope individual states can mitigate that. It [the virus] could go on and on for a few cycles," he added.
The Trump administration did not have the same views as Fauci regarding the threat of the recent outbreaks. President Donald Trump attributed the rise in coronavirus cases to increased testing, despite the evidence that a variety of factors go into the tips.
"If we stop testing now, we would actually have very few cases," said the president at a round table on Monday.
Vice President Mike Pence has also reportedly touted the misleading allegation in a call to governors, asking them to use it as an explanation for the fall peaks.
"The president often talks about embers," said Pence during the call, the audio of which was received by the New York Times. "As you all know, we still have an average of 20,000 cases a day across the country throughout the summer, which is a significant drop from six weeks ago."
According to a Times data analysis, in at least 14 countries, "positive fall rates are growing faster than the average number of tests."
Fauci said he doesn't think there will be an "immediate withdrawal" of health security restrictions to curb the spread of the virus, such as social detachment, but "it will really wait and see".
"When I look at what's going on with the infection rate, I think it's measured in months rather than weeks," Fauci told The Telegraph.
He said life is unlikely to return to normal until next year, in a grim prediction of how the COVID-19 pandemic will develop.
"I would hope to return to some normalcy within a year or so, but I don't think it will be this winter or fall. We will see it a little longer," Fauci told The Telegraph, adding that it is "not inevitable that you will have a so-called" second wave "in the fall, or even a massive increase if you approach it properly."
Fauci said there is still hope to fight the virus with a vaccine, seeing some possible options that are making "significant progress."
"With a vaccine, you can never guarantee success - that's stupid - there are so many ways that things go wrong," he told The Telegraph. "[But] anything we saw from early results is conceivable that we get two or three vaccines that are successful."
While Fauci described the COVID-19 pandemic as "an explosive outbreak that spread to so many cities and around the world in a few months," he sees "light at the end of the tunnel."
"This will end. As stressful and devastating as it is, it will end," Fauci told The Telegraph. "We are all together as a global community and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel."
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