Fauci

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Fauci Calls Situation ‘Quite Precarious,’ Tamps Down Vaccine Expectations

KEY POINTS

  • Fauci said the nation is “at the highest baseline” after officials reported more than 80,000 new cases in a single day two days in a row
  • The top health official expressed optimism over the ongoing coronavirus vaccine trials
  • A potential vaccine would likely only prevent symptomatic cases of coronavirus

The coronavirus situation in the U.S.  is “quite precarious” amid a resurgence of new cases across multiple states, said Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, on Monday.

The U.S. is “at the highest baseline” it has ever been during the pandemic after health officials recorded more than 80,000 new coronavirus cases on both Friday and Saturday, Fauci said. The previous single-day record of 74,818 cases was set in July. 

“We came back up again to the worst that we’ve ever had, which was over 80,000 per day,” Fauci, who is director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious, said. “It’s been up and wavering up and down till now, we’re at the highest baseline we’ve ever been, which is really quite precarious.”

Fauci expressed optimism over the results from various ongoing coronavirus vaccine trials. He said results should be available at the end of November or the beginning of December. However, he noted that a vaccine would not eradicate the virus. Instead, it would only decrease a person’s chances of having symptoms.  

“The primary thing you want to do is that if people get infected, prevent them from getting sick, and if you prevent them from getting sick, you will ultimately prevent them from getting seriously ill,” Fauci said. 

The infectious disease expert also emphasized the importance of observing preventive measures, including wearing face masks, avoiding large gatherings, social distancing, and frequent handwashing, Business Insider reported. 

“We can do this. I’m absolutely convinced that as a nation, if we pull together and do some fundamental common-denominator public-health measures, that we can get through this with a lot of help in the future from vaccines and adequate therapies,” he said. 

American health officials have reported nearly 8.7 million coronavirus cases since the pandemic began. The number of cases recorded globally is also inching closer to 43.5 million. More than 225,000 people in the country have died due to COVID-19. 

The U.S. continues to have the highest number of reported coronavirus cases worldwide. It is followed by India, which has recorded 7.9 million cases, Brazil with 5.4 million cases, and Russia with 1.5 million COVID-19 cases, Johns Hopkins University reported.    Fauci said the government would not make any future COVID-19 vaccine obligatory for the general public Fauci said the government would not make any future COVID-19 vaccine obligatory for the general public Photo: POOL / Al Drago

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Fauci says findings will be known by early December

(Photo by Alex Edelman-Pool/Getty Images)

Pool | Getty Images News | Getty Images

LONDON — Hopes are rising that a Covid-19 vaccine could be approved by the end of the year, with drugmakers and research centers scrambling to help bring an end to the pandemic.

Dozens of candidate vaccines are in clinical evaluation, according to the World Health Organization, with some already conducting late-stage tests before seeking formal approval.

The outcome of the trials is being closely monitored around the world.

The U.S.’s leading expert on infectious disease believes it will only be a matter of weeks before the findings of a potential vaccine will be known.

“We will know whether a vaccine is safe and effective by the end of November, the beginning of December,” White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said in a BBC interview on Sunday.

“The question is: Once you have a safe and effective vaccine, or more than one, how can you get it to the people who need it as quickly as possible?”

Fauci said a vaccine deemed safe and effective would be rolled out according to a set prioritization, with individuals such as health care workers and those in a higher risk category likely to receive the first doses. He said it would be “several months into 2021” before a vaccine becomes more widely available.

The development of a vaccine, Fauci warned, would not replace the need for public health measures to help protect people from the disease for some time.

To date, more than 43 million people have contracted the coronavirus worldwide, with 1.15 million related deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Vaccine race

The race for a Covid vaccine has seen governments step in to try to help the process along by providing funds to allow companies to scale up manufacturing even before drugs have been approved.

Leo Varadkar, Ireland’s deputy prime minister, has said he is hopeful an inoculation against the coronavirus could be approved before the end of the year.

“I’m increasingly optimistic, as is government, that we will see a vaccine approved in the next couple of months and that in the first half or first quarter of next year it’ll be possible to start vaccinating those most at risk,” Varadkar, who is a qualified doctor, told RTE radio on Sunday.

A Rehab Support worker checks on patient notes as the first patients are admitted to the NHS Seacole Centre at Headley Court, Surrey, a disused military hospital, which has been converted during the coronavirus pandemic.

Victoria Jones | PA Images via Getty Images

Not all public health experts share the same level of optimism about the development of a Covid vaccine before year-end, however.

The Mail on Sunday reported plans had been drawn up for frontline National Health Service staff to receive a coronavirus vaccine within weeks, citing an email sent by an NHS Trust chief to his staff.

In response to the report, U.K. Health Minister Matt Hancock said on Monday that

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Fauci says findings on a potential coronavirus vaccine are expected by early December

Dr. Anthony Fauci

“We will know whether a vaccine is safe and effective by the end of November, beginning of December,” the director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said. “The amount of doses that will be available in December will not certainly be enough to vaccinate everybody — you’ll have to wait several months into 2021.”

Speaking to the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Fauci added that the vaccination of a “substantial proportion of the population” so there could be a “significant impact on the dynamics of the outbreak” may not be possible until the second or third quarter of 2021.

Pence adviser Marty Obst tests positive for coronavirus

“What I do foresee is that with a successful vaccine and the continuation of some form of public health measures, as we go and progress through the months of 2021, getting towards the third and fourth quarter, we will see a considerable approach towards some form of normality,” Fauci told Marr.

Pressed on whether he believes US President Donald Trump is correct in saying that the United States is “rounding the corner” in the course of the pandemic, Fauci said he believes this is untrue.

“The data speak for themselves,” Fauci said.

“Unfortunately, I am sorry to see what I’m viewing from a distance, what I’m seeing in the UK … after getting hit pretty badly the way we did, you went down to a pretty low level, but now you’re starting to escalate in the same manner that we are here,” he added.

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Covid-19 Live Updates: Fauci Suggests a National Mask Mandate

Here’s what you need to know:

Credit…Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Reports of new infections poured in at alarming levels on Saturday as the coronavirus continued to tear through the United States. Six states reported their highest-ever infection totals and more than 76,000 new cases had been announced by evening, one day after the country shattered its single-day record with more than 85,000 new cases.

The country’s case total on Saturday, which was sure to rise through the evening as more states reported data, was already the fifth highest in a single day. Case numbers on weekends are often lower because some states and counties do not report new data, so the high numbers on Saturday gave reason for alarm.

“This is exploding all over the country,” said Gov. Andy Beshear of Kentucky, whose state is among 16 that have added more cases in the past week than in any other seven-day stretch. “We’ve got to tamp down these cases. The more cases, the more people that end up in the hospital and the more people die.”

Officials in Alaska, Ohio, Oklahoma, Colorado, New Mexico and Illinois announced more new cases on Saturday than on any other day of the pandemic.

Rural areas and small metropolitan regions have seen some of the worst outbreaks in recent weeks, but by Saturday, many large cities were struggling as well.

The counties that include Chicago, Oklahoma City, Minneapolis, Anchorage and El Paso all set single-day records on Saturday. Across the country, hospitalizations have grown by about 40 percent since last month, and they continued to rise on Saturday. Around Chicago, where new restrictions on bars and other businesses took effect Friday, more than twice as many cases are now being identified each day than at the start of October.

“This moment is a critical inflection point for Chicago,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot has said.

States in the Midwest and Mountain West have been reporting some of the country’s most discouraging statistics, but worrisome upticks are occurring all over. New cases have emerged at or near record levels recently in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Arkansas and New Mexico.

“Over the next week, two weeks, three weeks, please be extremely conservative in deciding how much time to spend outside of the home,” Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham of New Mexico said Friday as she imposed new restrictions on businesses. “The visit to friends can wait — it’s not worth your life, or theirs.”

Experts worry that the growing numbers in need of hospital care will only get worse if cases continue to mount, especially in rural areas where medical facilities could be quickly overwhelmed.

The high case count in part reflects increased testing. With about one million people tested on many days, the country is getting a far more accurate picture of how widely the virus has spread than it did in the spring.

But public

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Fauci says it may be time for a widespread mask mandate

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said it is a “great idea” for there to be a uniform mask mandate, as US coronavirus cases surged on Friday.

Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, told CNN’s Erin Burnett, “If people are not wearing masks, well then maybe we should be mandating it.”

During the interview, Fauci acknowledged some might say it would be hard to enforce the mandate.

“But if everyone agrees that this is something that’s important and they mandated it and everybody pulls together and say, ‘We’re going to mandate it but let’s just do it,’ I think that it would be a great idea to have everybody do it uniformly,” he said to Burnett.

On Friday, US confirmed coronavirus cases reached a record high for a single day with more than 83,000 infections.

President Trump has minimized the severity of the recent spike in cases, and said on Twitter that the increase is due to testing being “way up.” Experts have cautioned about how an increase in cases could happen in the fall.

Democratic challenger and former vice president Joe Biden said on Friday he would push for national mask use. In his plan, he would talk to governors to make mask wearing mandatory in their states, and if they refuse, then he would go to mayors and county executives.


Lauren Booker can be reached at lauren.booker@globe.com.

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Fauci says it might be time to mandate masks as Covid-19 surges across US

Dr. Anthony Fauci has been reluctant to support a federal mask mandate.



Anthony S. Fauci wearing a suit and tie standing in front of a sign


© Provided by CNN


“A national mandate probably would not work,” he said on Sept 15 during a news conference with Vermont Gov. Phil Scott.

Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has been urging Americans to use masks for months. “I have trust in the American people that if we put a strong emphasis on the importance of wearing masks, that we will come around and do that and get that percentage up above the relatively low percentage of people that are using masks,” Fauci said on July 21 on NPR’s Morning Edition.

But he has said before that he doesn’t think a federal law would be the way to go.

“I don’t like to be authoritarian from the federal government, but at the local level, if governors and others essentially mandate the use of masks when you have an outbreak, I think that would be very important,” Fauci told Alabama Sen. Doug Jones during a Facebook live event in July.

Until now.

“Well, if people are not wearing masks, then maybe we should be mandating it,” Fauci told CNN’s Erin Burnett Friday.

Covid-19 has been worsening across the United States, with cases rising in 32 states Friday and holding steady in 17 more. The University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation said the country was entering a winter surge as new infections passed 75,000 in a single day on Friday and more than 800 deaths were reported.

Mask mandates may be tricky to enforce, but it might be time to call for them, Fauci said.

“There’s going to be a difficulty enforcing it, but if everyone agrees that this is something that’s important and they mandate it and everybody pulls together and says, you know, we’re going to mandate it but let’s just do it, I think that would be a great idea to have everybody do it uniformly,” he said.

As cooler weather comes, people need to “double down” on measures that work, Fauci said. “Universal mask wearing” is one, he said, as is keeping a distance from others and frequent hand washing. “They sound very simple. But we’re not uniformly doing that and that’s one of the reasons we’re seeing these surges,” Fauci said.

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Dr. Fauci Says Trump Hasn’t Been to White House COVID-19 Task Force Meetings in ‘Several Months’

Donald Trump has been absent from White House COVID-19 task force meetings for “several months,” says White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Fauci.

According to CNBC, Vice President Pence leads the task force meetings that used to occur every day during the first few months of the pandemic but have now been scaled down to one virtual meeting a week despite cases continuing to rise.

“We certainly interact with the vice president at the task force meetings, and the vice president makes our feelings and what we talk about there known to the president,” Fauci told MSNBC’s Chuck Todd. 

Trump apparently receives all of his information via Pence and coronavirus advisor Scott Atlas, according to the director of the National Institutes of Health Dr. Francis Collins, who did an interview with NPR on Monday. Dr. Collins also sits on the task force.

“The President is routinely briefed about the coronavirus each and every day,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Matthews told CNBC in a statement. “The relevant information is brought to him on the big decisions, and then he moves forward in the way that’s best for our country.”

While the President misses task force meetings, the United States is averaging nearly 61,000 new cases of COVID-19 on a daily basis, CNBC cited. Texas currently has the most cases out of any other state of the last seven days, currently sitting at 35,292 according to CDC COVID data tracker.

Trump has also gone on record to ridicule Dr. Fauci, saying that he is tired of listening to him. 

“Fauci is a disaster. If I listened to him, we’d have 500,000 deaths,” he said, later repeating himself and raising the number even higher. “If there’s a reporter on, you can have it just the way I said it, I couldn’t care less.”

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Fauci: Trump has not been to a task force meeting in months

President TrumpDonald John TrumpMore than 300 military family members endorse Biden Five takeaways from the final Trump-Biden debate Biden: ‘I would transition from the oil industry’ MORE has not been to a White House coronavirus task force meeting in several months, Anthony FauciAnthony FauciTrump, Biden clash over coronavirus response, mounting death toll Stahl tells Pence he and Trump ‘insulted 60 Minutes’ by giving ‘campaign speeches’ How Trump lost to the coronavirus MORE said Friday.

During an interview on “Meet the Press Daily,” the nation’s top infectious disease doctor said he hasn’t directly interacted with or spoken to Trump in some time.

“I definitely don’t have his ear as much as Scott Atlas right now, that has been a changing situation,” Fauci said. 

Scott Atlas is a neuroradiologist and a fellow at the Hoover Institution, a conservative think tank. He was added to the task force over the summer after appearing frequently on Fox News.

Atlas has emerged as one of Trump’s most influential advisers, but he has come under fire from public health experts inside and outside the administration who accuse him of feeding the president — and the public — misinformation.

Fauci said he meets virtually with the heads of federal health agencies, such as Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert Redfield, Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn, as well as task force coordinator Deborah BirxDeborah BirxScott Atlas: Fauci ‘just one person on the task force’ Overnight Health Care: Trump takes criticism of Fauci to a new level | GOP Health Committee chairman defends Fauci | Birx confronted Pence about Atlas Birx confronted Pence about Atlas MORE.

Fauci said that during the spring, the task force would meet almost every day, but once the focus of the White House shifted to the economics of reopening the country, the frequency of official task force meetings has dropped to once a week.

Fauci said most of his interactions with the White House now are with Vice President Pence.

“We certainly interact with the vice president at the task force meetings, and the vice president makes our feelings known to the president, but direct involvement with the president and discussions, I have not done that in a while,” Fauci said.

Fauci said the country is in a “precarious” position, and people really need to understand how difficult the winter will be if coronavirus infections continue to spike the way they are now.

The United States on Thursday reported at least 75,049 new coronavirus cases, the second-highest daily total so far. 

“We don’t want to shut the country down. Every time I talk about things that we need to do, people get concerned. We’re not talking about shutting down, but we’re talking about doubling down on some of the fundamental public health measures that we need to adhere to,” Fauci said, like the universal wearing of masks, physical distancing, avoiding large crowds and indoor dining.

“They seem rather simple, but they really do work,” he said.

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How Trump success in ending Obamacare will kill Fauci plan to conquer HIV

In his State of the Union address in February 2019, Donald Trump vowed to end the HIV epidemic by 2030.

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Related: ‘Rick Scott had us on lockdown’: how Florida said no to $70m for HIV crisis

But if Trump has his way and the supreme court strikes down the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the resulting seismic disruption to the healthcare system would end that dream.

Democrats have expressed grave concern that if Amy Coney Barrett is seated on the supreme court, the conservative jurist could cast a decisive vote to destroy the ACA in the California v Texas case scheduled for oral argument starting 10 November. The Senate judiciary committee will vote on Barrett’s nomination on Thursday. A full Senate vote is expected on Monday.

The brainchild of Dr Anthony Fauci and other top brass at the Department of Health and Human Services, the ambitious Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America has received for its debut year $267m in new federal spending, largely targeted at HIV transmission hotspots across the US.



a person holding a sign: Amy Coney Barrett listens during a confirmation hearing. Photograph: Anna Moneymaker/AP


© Provided by The Guardian
Amy Coney Barrett listens during a confirmation hearing. Photograph: Anna Moneymaker/AP

The central aim of the Trump-backed plan is to improve access to antiretrovirals, given that successfully treating HIV with such medications eliminates transmission risk. For HIV-negative people, the plan promotes greater use of PrEP – a daily antiretroviral tablet that cuts the risk of HIV by more than 99% among gay and bisexual men, who are its predominant users and account for seven in 10 new infections.

Given antiretrovirals’ enormous cost, the ACA and its broadening of insurance access serves as backbone to the HIV plan, which seeks a 90% reduction by 2030 to the otherwise slowly declining or stagnant national HIV transmission rate of about 37,000 new cases annually.

“The plan is dead in the water if the ACA goes down,” said Amy Killelea, senior director of health systems and policy at Nastad, an HIV public policy non-profit.

“President Trump’s healthcare agenda, in particular his plan to get the supreme court to rule against families’ healthcare, does more to end access to HIV care than it does to end HIV,” said the Washington state senator Patty Murray.

‘Heartbreaking and morally indefensible’

Kaiser found that between 2012 and 2018, the proportion of the non-elderly HIV population lacking insurance declined from about 18% to 11%. This shift was mainly driven by the expansion of Medicaid in the states that opted under the ACA to open the program to all residents with incomes below 138% of the federal poverty level.

About 60% of non-elderly people receiving care for HIV fall into that lowest of income brackets. Forty per cent of people with HIV receive Medicaid, compared with 15% of the general population.

“Striking down the ACA would lead many people with HIV to lose insurance coverage,” said Jennifer Kates, director of global health and HIV policy at the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Not following the science to address HIV or Covid-19 primarily

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Trump calls Fauci an ‘idiot,’ says rallies are ‘BOFFO’ while coronavirus rages on

As hospitals fill up with COVID-19 patients in Wisconsin and Chicagoans face a second surge of coronavirus cases that could lead to new shutdowns, President Donald Trump is calling medical professionals “idiots.”

As most states across the country face rising coronavirus numbers and hospitalizations, the president effectively says he’s “tired” of it all.

Of course he didn’t use the first person. He always puts his own gripes in the mouths of others, pulling a page from the narcissist’s playbook, as he can’t imagine anyone thinking differently than he does.

In a call with his campaign staff Monday, Trump said: “People are tired of COVID. I have these huge rallies. People are saying whatever. Just leave us alone. They’re tired of it. People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots.”

Ah, “people.” Those “people” who just say “whatever” about a deadly virus that has claimed more than 220,000 American lives and left millions with, at best, a preexisting condition and at worse lingering health issues.

Those “people” who say “leave us alone” without acknowledging their own health affects everyone they’re around, young and old, weak and strong, friend and stranger.

Those people are certainly out there. They’re the ones showing up maskless at Trump rallies and acting like COVID-19 is much ado about nothing while sneering at “people” like me and saying, “Get out of your mama’s basement, coward.” (Fun fact: Thanks to the virus, I, like millions of Americans, haven’t been able to see my mama all year, much less hang out in her basement. And when it comes to a pandemic, I am very much a coward. And proud of it.)

But hey, Trump and the people he’s using to channel his own childish, “I DON’T WANNA DEAL WITH THIS MEAN PANDEMIC ANYMORE!” attitude are tired of it all.

Well, let me find someone to play a sad trombone sound for them, one that can be heard from coast to coast. Because guess what? I’m tired of it too.

I don’t think there are any Americans who aren’t tired of COVID-19 and the pandemic that has thrown our lives wildly out of whack.

But rather than whining about it, denying science and wasting time deriding those who share best practices to slow the spread, many in this country are wearing masks, avoiding crowded gatherings and bending over backward to keep ourselves, our families and our communities safe.

But it’s not enough. There are too many adopting the president’s “I’m SO over this” attitude.

Don’t take my word for it. Listen to people like Melissa Resch, a registered nurse who works in a coronavirus medical unit in Wisconsin. She told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel this week that she’s seeing patients ranging in ages from their 20s to their 90s.

“This doesn’t discriminate against age,” Resch told the newspaper.

She asked people to stay home, social distance and wear masks so she can avoid having to help families FaceTime with a loved one “as they take their

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