COVID-19 Can’t Be Eliminated Or Eradicated Like Polio, Says Anthony Fauci

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Washington: Dr Anthony Fauci believes that COVID-19 can’t be eradicated. In fact, America’s leading infectious disease official doubts whether the coronavirus disease can be eliminated, like other diseases including polio and measles.

With coronavirus cases surging across Europe and in several parts of the United States, Fauci told The New York Times that “control” will be the keyword in the fight against COVID.

Asked when the SARS-CoV-2 virus will become endemic, Fauci said: “I don’t know…. We don’t know… The one thing I’ve said multiple times is that the multiple phases of an outbreak are pandemic deceleration, control, elimination and eradication.”

But he was sure that COVID-19 cannot be eradicated.

“There’s no way we’re going to eradicate, I doubt, because of the transmissibility… I doubt very seriously whether we’re going to eliminate it, like we’ve eliminated polio, and we’ve eliminated measles, and a century ago we eliminated malaria from the United States. But there’s control and it’s going to be up to us what level of control that we are willing to accept,” he said.

Last year, Fauci had said the pandemic may last till the end of 2021.

Ideally, the number of infections should not impact society in a way that it has done so far. To ensure that, vaccination will be the key, said Dr Fauci.

“If you’re willing to accept control at 70,000 per day, that’s wrong. No way we can accept 70,000, 80,000 infections a day. You have to get it down so low that it doesn’t impact, in a negative way, society. So we don’t worry about getting sick and dying. Our economy is essentially held hostage to it. That’s the control. When we get there, I can’t predict. I hope it’s relatively soon, and it’s going to depend a lot on how well we do in vaccinating the population,” Fauci said.

COVID-19 has claimed over 5.1 million lives across the world with the US leading the tally at 7.67 lakh and counting.

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