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As coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations decline nationwide, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is happy to see it—but also realistic about the chances of another surge. Whether or not we have one depends on a few factors, which he outlined this morning on Fox News Sunday with host Chris Wallace. Read on for five life-saving predictions and pieces of advice—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.
Dr. Fauci Predicted This is What Will Happen Next
"There's an average of almost 84,000 new cases every day, and more than 1500 deaths every day, still bad, but down considerably from a month ago. Are we coming out of the Delta wave?" asked Wallace. "And as we head into colder weather, people going for holiday travel, what is the real possibility that we could have a fifth wave of the virus, especially if there's not a spike in vaccinations?" "Well, that's the issue," said Dr. Fauci. "I think what you just mentioned just now, Chris, it's going to be within our capability to prevent that from happening. You're right. The numbers are going down. The cases are down by 23%, the hospitalizations and deaths are down 17 or 18%. So we're going in the right direction. The problem is, as we all know, we still have approximately 66 million people who are eligible to be vaccinated, who are not vaccinated. The degree to which we continue to come down in that slope will depend on how well we do about getting more people vaccinated. If we don't do very well in that regard, there's always the danger that there'll be enough circulating virus, that you can have a stalling of the diminishing of the number of cases. And when that happens, as we've seen in the past with other waves that we've been through, there's the danger of resurgence, but we can do something about that. That's the whole point that we keep emphasizing. The more people we get vaccinated, the less likelihood is there going to be another surge as we go into the winter."
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Dr. Fauci Advises This for the Holidays
"For groups that have vaccinated, I think we can enjoy the holiday season. I get asked that all the time, you know, trick or treating and Halloween Thanksgiving with the family, when you're in the family unit, among people who are vaccinated, I think you should just enjoy the holidays as best you can in the family spirit. For those who are not vaccinated first, I would encourage them very strongly to get vaccinated, but if they're not, they should do what the CDC recommends is when you're in an indoor setting, in a public indoor setting to wear a mask, it's very important. We know that masks work and they could greatly diminish the likelihood that you're going to get infected, which is another reason why we keep saying why it's so important to get vaccinated, because not only will it be good for your own health and that of your, it will make it much easier for you to enjoy the kinds of things in society that you'd like to enjoy."
Dr. Fauci Thinks Mask Mandates Work
"Texas Governor Greg Abbott, this week issued an executive order banning any entity, whether public or private from mandating that people got vaccines," said Wallace. Said Fauci: "From a public health standpoint, that is really unfortunate because we know how effective vaccines are in preventing not only illness for the individual, but for diminishing the dynamics of the infection in society. The data are very, very clear. It doesn't matter what I think or not think of governor Abbott. The fact is look at the data and look at the difference between people who get vaccinated versus, uh, people who are unvaccinated in cases in hospitalizations and in deaths, the CDC just came out with their recent data and the data are really striking Chris about the risk associated with being unvaccinated versus the protection that you get when you are vaccinated…Unfortunately I can understand perhaps what the governor is trying to do, but I think when you're in a public health crisis, sometimes unusual situations require unusual actions. And in this case, it's things like mandating, masks or vaccinations. They're very important. We're not living in a vacuum as individuals, we're living in a society and society needs to be protected. And you do that by not only protecting yourself, but by protecting the people around you."
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Dr. Fauci Said There's a Waning of Immunity so Boosters Will be Needed for All
Wallace asked Fauci if politics has gotten ahead of science when it comes to booster recommendations. "I'm not so sure the politics got ahead of it," answered Fauci. "If you look at the data that's been accumulated, not only from our cohorts that we're following here in the United States, but the information which is critical information that we're getting from Israel is very, very clear that there's waning immunity and that we do need to boost individuals who've received any of the three products that we've been dealing with right now. And just this past week, two of them— Moderna and J&J, put their data before the FDA and their advisory committee has made a recommendation. Now it's up to the FDA to make that authorization, which I believe will then go on for a recommendation from the CDC. So I don't think there's any political issue there. I think it's just public health data and evidence."
Should or Can People Mix Booster Brands?
Dr. Fauci predicts "that there'll be a degree of flexibility that will be left up to the individual based on their individual situation," regarding which brand of booster you get. One study showed people who got J&J would benefit by getting a different brand. "If you look at the data from J&J that [was] presented to the FDA, when they use their own product, as the boost, it's based on clinical data from a clinical trial, the mix and match … shows that when you boost Moderna or Pfizer against the original J&J you get a much higher antibody level that's in laboratory indicator that would predict efficacy, but it's a laboratory data. So people need to understand that the J&J against the J&J from the trial and the data they presented is based on clinical data. So what you're going to see without a doubt is that the FDA is going to take all of that under advisement from their advisory committee. And then they'll make a regulatory decision, which will then we'll get to the CDC with their advisory committee and they'll make a recommendation. I believe there's going to be a degree of flexibility of what a person who got the J&J originally can do either with J&J or with the mix and match from other products." So get vaccinated, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.