White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci won’t explicitly say how Americans will know that they’ve successfully beaten back the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 case, death and hospitalization numbers have been in steady decline at a national level for weeks, and the delta-variant driven spike of this past summer did not result in the death counts of the previous worst surge of the pandemic. However, top health officials across the federal government, including Fauci, have not been clear in what the end goal is for combatting the coronavirus.
Large swathes of the American people have already made up their minds. In June, 57% of Republicans said the pandemic, in their mind, was over. The 187 million Americans who are fully vaccinated against the virus have been able to live a fairly normal life for months now, if they so choose.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have not granted a full green-light to the fully-vaccinated to live their lives normally though, with recommendations still in place to mask up and socially distance in some circumstances. Fauci is still warning against large Christmas gatherings and claiming that every American will likely need a booster shot.
Fauci has given various timelines for when the pandemic may end over the last year and a half, ranging from late 2020 to sometime in 2022. The most explicit he’s been about when the pandemic will “end” in the U.S. is saying that the country needs to get below 10,000 cases per day. That level hasn’t been reached since the pandemic began, although case rates did drop to as low as 11,000 per day in June of this year before the delta surge, according to CDC data. Current new infections are at a daily rate of about 93,000.
Some experts have told the Daily Caller that hospitalizations and deaths are more important metrics to watch. The virus will likely be in circulation forever, they say, so as long as the number of people clogging hospitals and dying from it is kept at a manageable level, that can be considered a success. (RELATED: What Has To Happen For A Pandemic To Be Declared Over?)
Fauci hasn’t weighed in recently on whether that’s accurate. Aside from pushing vaccinations, nobody in the Biden administration has set a clear goal for the end of COVID-19. President Joe Biden said that 98% of Americans needed to be vaccinated, but the Daily Caller could not identify a single medical expert who agreed with that assessment. Vaccination rates for diseases like polio, chicken pox and measles are not that high.
“It is an assumption that it’s okay to get infected and get mild and moderate disease, as long as you don’t wind up in the hospital and die. I have to be honest: I reject that,” Anthony Fauci says. #TAF21 https://t.co/rEeWZWqPTI pic.twitter.com/0n9PBFSU31
— The Atlantic (@TheAtlantic) September 28, 2021
Fauci also said recently that even “mild and moderate” cases of COVID-19 shouldn’t be acceptable, implying that the U.S. must entirely eradicate COVID-19 to be successful.
The Daily caller contacted Fauci’s office multiple times about what metric he believes should be used to best determine when the U.S. has gotten past the pandemic, but did not receive a response. The White House also would not answer when asked if Fauci has discussed the question with Biden. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Fauci-Funded Experiment Killed Dozens Of Puppies Using Taxpayer Money)
In March, Biden said the virus “cannot” be stopped. Other countries, like Denmark, have begun lifting all restrictions on societal activity now that about three-quarters of their population have been vaccinated. The American people, meanwhile, still have no idea when that day will come in the U.S.