Top infectious diseases expert Dr Anthony Fauci has warned the US coronavirus death toll could nearly double in the coming months.
‘The models tell us that if we do not do the kinds of things that we’re talking about in the cold of the fall and the winter, we could have from 300,000 to 400,000 deaths,’ he said during a Tuesday American University virtual event.
Currently, projections from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation’s (IHME) leading model predict 363,269 Americans will have died of COVID-19 by January 1, 2021.’That would be just so tragic if that happens,’ Dr Fauci said.
During the same event, Dr Fauci asserted that the recent rash of infections at the White House could have been prevented.
Several close aides to Trump and senior Republican politicians have tested positive for the coronavirus since the president announced on Friday that he and first lady Melania Trump had contracted the virus.
‘Take a look at what happened this week at the White House,’ Fauci said in an interview with American University’s Kennedy Political Union, when asked what advice he had about how people could discuss preventive actions with relatives who believed the pandemic was a hoax.
‘That is a reality, right there. And every day that goes by more people are popping up that are infected. It’s not a hoax. It’s an unfortunate situation when you see something like that because that could have been prevented,’ Fauci said.
According to the IHME model, the death toll could be kept as low 278,526 Americans if the US implemented universal mask-wearing.
Already, 21,939 people have died of COVID-19 in the US, according to Wednesday morning figures from Johns Hopkins University.
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SOURCE: Daily Mail, Natalie Rahhal; Reuters