We all want the coronavirus pandemic to be over. But some Americans also don’t want to get vaccinated. Those two things are at conflict, resulting in lives lost, warns Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He appeared yesterday on This Week With George Stephanopoulos with a warning for everyone. Read on for 5 pieces of advice that could save your life—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You Have “Long” COVID and May Not Even Know It.
Dr. Fauci Warned Some People Should Be Very “Worried” About the Delta Variant
Dr. Fauci was asked how worried we should be about the Delta variant. “Well, if you’re not vaccinated, you should be concerned, George, because it’s very clear that this is a nasty variant,” said Dr. Fauci. “It has a much greater capability of transmitting from person to person. We know from extensive experience, not only in our own country here in the United States, but in other countries, that the vaccines that we are using work extremely well against the Delta variant, particularly in preventing advanced disease that would lead to hospitalization and likely death in some circumstances. So the vaccines work. That’s the good news. The bad news is that we have a very nasty variant that the good news is that we have a vaccine that works against it. That’s the reason why we’re very concerned is that we have some sort of a schism. We tune some states and some areas that have a very low level of vaccination, which is really unfortunate because we want to make sure those people are protected for their own safety and their own life, but that of their family and their community.”
Dr. Fauci Said Ask Yourself, Do You Want to Protect Your Family?
Fauci was asked about the political divide; polls show many Republicans do not want to get vaccinated. “It’s not an easy solution,” said Dr. Fauci. “It really isn’t. What we’re trying to do is to just put politics aside. This is no time for politics. This is a public health issue and viruses and public health don’t know the difference between a Democrat or Republican or an independent. One of the ways to do that is to get trusted messengers without any political ideology differences out there that could be clergy that could be trusted messages in the community. That could be your family physician to get people to put aside this political issue and say, what am I going to be able to do for my own safety? And for that of my family?”
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Dr. Fauci Said the Vaccine May as Well Have Full Authorization
Governor Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas, a Republican, has begged his constituents to get vaccinated and said fully approving the vaccine, instead of just having it be an emergency approval, would boost confidence. “The governor does have a point there,” said Fauci. “There are certainly some people who, when you use the terminology ’emergency use authorization,’ they kind of think it’s tenuous data showing that it’s worked so that it’s safe. That’s not the case in some emergency use authorization for other products. The amount of data just barely gets to show you that the benefit is definitely worth any risk. When you’re dealing with the data that we have now, you’re talking about hundreds of millions of people who’ve been vaccinated. And in every country you go to, you see that the effectiveness and the safety of the vaccines are very high. So although it’s understandable, quite understandable that some people might say, well, we want to wait for the full approval. That’s really only a technical issue. It’s the FDA dotting, the I’s and crossing the T’s. But there’s no doubt in my mind that these vaccines are going to get full approval because of the extraordinary amount of positive data.”
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Dr. Fauci Said He Was Still Trying to Learn More About Boosters
Fauci said the Pfizer decision to recommend boosters, which was made based on an Israeli study, has not changed the minds of the CDC and FDA, which said boosters are not recommended. The scientists are studying the data and also doing “pure clinical observation. Namely, are we seeing more breakthrough infections than you might expect? Those are being followed extremely carefully. And we’re also simultaneously doing studies, preparing for the eventuality of having to boost people. So there’s a lot of dynamic things going on right now. We’re not at all putting aside, even though the CDC and the FDA correctly said right now, we don’t feel you need a booster. That doesn’t mean that we’re not very, very actively following and gathering all of this information to see if and when we might need it. And if, and when we do we’ll have everything in place to do it.”
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Dr. Fauci Said Kids Need to Go Back to School This Fall
“The bottom line is we need to get the children back in school in person classes in the fall,” said Fauci. “And what the CDC is saying, that if you’re vaccinated, you don’t need to wear a mask. If you’re un-vaccinated, you should wear a mask. And even though some of the guidelines like six feet versus three feet and things like that, even though those are the things you want to pay attention to, if you can’t implement them, you should still do everything you can with testing with guidelines that would allow people [to go back]. For example, in lunchrooms, when you gather, when you’re sick, don’t come to school, do everything you can to keep the in-person classes going. That’s different than what we’ve seen before. I mean, the bottom line is a very, very strong push to get the children back in school, but also to do it safely for the children. And that’s the reason why you’re hearing, if you’re vaccinated, you don’t need to wear a mask, but if you’re un-vaccinated, you still should wear a mask.” So follow that advice, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, 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.