According to John Hopkins University, the United States has suffered in excess of 100,000 fatalities due to COVID-19 — and while the death toll has been tragic, it is still far short of what early estimates were predicting.
Despite the relatively good news, Americans have still been bracing for the dreaded “second wave” of infections that experts have warned will strike in the fall, but in a surprising turn of events, Dr. Anthony Fauci is now suggesting that the influx of new cases may not come after all, according to The Hill.
“It’s not inevitable”
“We often talk about the possibility of a second wave, or of an outbreak when you’re reopening,” The Hill quoted Fauci as telling CNN on Wednesday.
“We don’t have to accept that as an inevitability,” he added. “And particularly when people start thinking about the fall. I want people to really appreciate that, it could happen but it is not inevitable.
“I’m feeling better about it as we go by with the weeks that go by, and we see that we’re getting more and more capability of testing,” Fauci continued.
He declared: “If we do the kinds of things that we’re putting in place now, to have the workforce, the system, and the will to do the kinds of things that are the clear and effective identification, isolation and contact tracing, we can prevent this second wave that we’re talking about, if we do it correctly.”
Still, the doctor did issue some words of caution, warning members of the public against growing overconfident and engaging in reckless behavior.
“People who are out there frolicking need to realize that when you do that, and you see no negative effect in one week, please don’t be overconfident because the effect of spreading is not going to be seen for two, three, maybe even more weeks,” Fauci said.
Those words represent a significant change in posture from what the esteemed Dr. Fauci was saying as recently as last month.
“It’s inevitable that the coronavirus will return next season. When it does, how we handle it, will determine our fate,” Fauci said in April, according to The Washington Post.
He offered a similar assessment during another interview around the same time, stating, according to WUSA9, that “it could be a rebound to get us right back in the same boat we were in a few weeks ago.”
Still, given the seemingly conflicting information coming from the experts on everything from the wisdom of wearing masks to the question of whether COVID-19 is easily spread via surfaces, who really knows what to believe anymore?