October 5, 2022 – Anthony Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden, said this week that he is not prepared to say we are nearing the end of COVID-19. But Fauci said during a press conference, but as a country, we seem to be on the right track virtual chat For the Annenberg Center for Health Journalism at the University of Southern California.
“it is clear that [the president’s statement] It can be problematic because people will interpret it as “it’s all over and we’re done for good,” which isn’t the case, there’s no doubt about it,” Fauci said.
Instead, interpret the comment as a sign of the country’s improvement in case numbers and death rates over the past several months – and the worst is likely behind us.
Fauci, who has been heavily criticized for his public messages, chose his words carefully, even as he promised a brighter future.
“I think it would be arrogant to suddenly say we’re done [COVID],” he said. “Because remember we were going in the right direction in the summer of 2021, and Delta came along. Then in winter, Omicron came. Since then, we have sub-lines of Omicron.”
Especially with the winter months approaching, Fauci said, precautions still need to be taken to reduce the chances of another spike. When asked what precautions he himself takes, Fauci makes it clear that he still doesn’t go to the indoor dinner. He continues to attend receptions—mostly outdoors—without a mask, but if he’s been indoors for “an extended period of time,” he keeps the mask on.
Much of the conversation also reflected on the lessons that can be learned from the mixed messages sent by public health experts, including Fauci, during the COVID pandemic and more recent developments in monkeypox.
“I have always tried to give the hard truth,” Fauci said, “but often the hard truth is not heard under the circumstances under which it was given.” He blames social media for misrepresenting public comments and the spread of misinformation due to the general lack of clarity that many have attributed to his statements and CDC statements on COVID.
Fauci said that if he could go back and do certain things differently, he would. If he had had the choice, he would have tried to be more careful during the early months of the pandemic in emphasizing the uncertainty of the situation we were going through.
Fauci added that the main drawback the United States continues to face in relation to the pandemic is vaccination resistance and the eventual boost to COVID. And when it comes to vaccines, he doesn’t see the message as polarizing.
People say [I’m a] Fauci said. “Well, when I say you should be vaccinated because it saves lives, and someone says no, am I the polarizing character? Or is it the person who says something completely incorrect that is causing the polarization?”