As the United States approaches half a million deaths from Covid-19, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Monday that the situation didn’t have to be this bad, the country needs to be unified and committed to fighting the virus together.
“I believe that if you look back historically, we’ve done worse than most any other country, and we’re a highly developed rich country,” Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America. “There were things back then that if you go back and think about what you might have done, the kind of disparate responses of different states, rather than having a unified approach.”
“It’s so tough to just go back and try and, you know, do a metaphorical autopsy on how things went,” Fauci said. “It was just bad; it is bad now.”
In late winter and early spring last year, when it was said that the numbers could get as high as 240,000, “people were thinking we were being hyperbolic about it, and now here we are with a half a million deaths, just a stunning figure.”
Rather than looking back and saying “what the heck happened here?” Fauci said, he would encourage everyone “go forward and be completely committed as a unified country to just go at this together. This is a common enemy, we’ve all got to pitch in.”
There’s good news on vaccines, he said, but it’s a race against the infections – and public health measures to limit spread must continue.
“That is the weapons that we have against this horrible disease,” he said.