Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases prepares to testify ahead of a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., June 30, 2020.
Kevin Dietsch | Reuters
White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Wednesday that it is unlikely the coronavirus will ever be totally eradicated from the planet.
“I don’t really see us eradicating it,” Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said during an interview with the TB Alliance. While the virus will not disappear, it’s possible world leaders and public health officials could work to bring the virus down to “low levels,” he said.
“I think with a combination of good public health measures, a degree of global herd immunity and a good vaccine, which I do hope and feel cautiously optimistic that we will get, I think when we put all three of those together, we will get control of this, whether it’s this year or next year. I’m not certain,” he said.
Fauci’s comments are at odds with President Donald Trump, who reiterated his claim Tuesday evening that the virus would disappear. The president’s remark comes amid warnings from experts, including at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that Covid-19 cases and deaths could rise this fall.
“The virus will disappear. It will disappear,” Trump said during a White House briefing on the pandemic.
The coronavirus is not disappearing and continues to rapidly spread across the U.S. The virus has infected more than 3.9 million Americans and killed at least 142,090 as of Wednesday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Texas and Florida hit a grim record Monday for daily coronavirus deaths based on a seven-day moving average, as hospitalizations continue to surge in 34 states across the United States.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.