Fauci says Zuckerberg will not end the COVID epidemic unless an “overwhelming majority” vaccinates

The COVID-19 epidemic will only end if the “overwhelming majority” of people in the United States vaccinate themselves, Dr. Anthony Fauci warned on Monday.

With the introduction of safe respiratory treatments starting by the end of this year, the U.S. is projected to have vaccinated between 75 and 85 percent of the population for protection to be truly effective, the country’s chief infectious disease expert said. in a video interview with billionaire Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg.

“I want the vast majority of the country to vaccinate itself before we get to the end of the second quarter [of 2021]he told Zuckerberg.

“So when we get into the fall season, kids can feel safe going back to school, teachers can feel safe, they won’t get infected, we can go back to the strength of the economy, to open restaurants … that’s what I want to see.”

But the top scientist warned, “You’ll only see it when the vast majority of people vaccinate themselves. So in that sense, I want to see reluctant people get vaccinated sooner rather than later. If they want to wait a month or two, that’s fine, but I don’t want them to wait six to eight or nine months. “

Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, said that although initial doses will be given first to high-risk citizens, the public should have wide access to vaccines in the second quarter of next year. and July.

Basically, according to Fauci, the more people take the vaccine, the less likely it is that the virus will spread among the population – thereby reducing the rate of infections.

“As long as you’re susceptible, you’re part of the problem, not part of the solution. If you’re protected, you’re another person who can’t be affected by the virus. If you’re vulnerable, even if you don’t get a lot of symptoms, the fact is being infected means you inadvertently spreading the epidemic. If you want to be part of the solution, vaccinate yourself, ”he told Zuckerberg in an interview this week.

Vaccine candidates for Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna, and AstraZeneca against COVID-19 have shown promising results in clinical trials, with some claiming efficiencies of around 95 percent. But the results have not yet been evaluated by experts.

On Monday, Moderna said it was seeking permission for emergency use from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. CEO Stéphane Bancel told Fox Business that Americans could see doses arrive 24 hours after licensing.

According to a November Gallup survey, 58 percent of Americans say they would receive COVID-19. Although this is below the required statistics, the number has exceeded the 50 per cent who said they will take it in September.

Based on the poll, 37 percent said they would avoid vaccination because of the rapid introduction, and 26 percent said they want to wait to be confirmed if it’s really safe. Meanwhile, 12 percent of the survey said they “don’t usually trust vaccines,” Gallup said.

Zuckerberg Fauci interview
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (L) spoke to one of the country’s top infectious disease experts, Dr. Anthony Fauci (R), in a video chat on Monday, November 30, 2020.
Facebook / Zuck

According to Fauci, the federal government has so far agreed with several companies to produce about 600 million doses of potential vaccine. It is likely to reach U.S. health workers and citizens who are prone to COVID infection for the first time.

He predicted the initial round would end in April, after which the vaccines could become available to the public, even through stores like CVS or Walgreens.

“The challenge will be to convince people to get vaccinated,” Facui admitted. “Because if you have a very effective vaccine and only 50 percent of the country gets vaccinated, it won’t have such a protective umbrella.”

The following figure, produced by Statista, shows the total number of COVID vaccines provided by governments on November 20, based on data from Duke University.

Statista - A dose of COVID is provided
The total number of COVID vaccine doses provided by governments as of November 20, 2020, according to data from the Duke University Global Health Innovation Center.
Statista / Duke University