Fauci: Herd Immunity 'Unlikely' If Enough Refuse Vaccine

Dr Anthony Fauci

Anthony Fauci testified to a Senate committee Tuesday that he would "not be surprised" if the USA begins reporting as many as 100,000 new coronavirus cases per day, adding, "I'm very concerned and not satisfied with what's going on because we're going in the wrong direction".

Earlier this month, Fauci told the Journal of the American Medical Association there are four or five trials underway for vaccine candidates, and he expects the US will have millions of doses of a vaccine by year's end.

In an interview with the Aspen Institute on Sunday, Fauci - the U.S.'s top infectious disease expert - said he would settle for a vaccine that is between 70 and 75% effective. Even though 25% to 30% of people who got the vaccine would still be able to be infected by COVID-19, a 70% to 75% effectivity rate would be enough to produce herd immunity in most locales. But Dr. Anthony Fauci warns that America's herd immunity to the novel coronavirus might be harder to attain. "That would be wonderful if we got there. Some are going to be A and some are going to be down in C somewhere", he said. "There are others when the leadership did it right, but the citizenry didn't listen to them".

When asked what grade he would give the United States for managing the pandemic, Fauci said, "Some states will be A +".


Fauci, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, said the federal government has "a lot of work to do" in encouraging Americans to get inoculated once there is a coronavirus vaccine available to the public. "All of the people who have a grave danger of a poor outcome".

Given the influence of anti-vaxxers, he added: "We have a lot of work to do" to educate people about the truth about vaccines.

But when asked by CNN senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen whether the US can get to herd immunity if 25% of the population refuses to get a coronavirus vaccine with that rate of effectiveness, Fauci said, "No, unlikely". "You make a contact, 50% of the people because you're coming from an authority don't even want to talk to you", he said.

He said in areas where the virus is spreading in the community, 20% to 40% of those who are infected are asymptomatic.

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