LOS ANGELES (KNX) — Thursday marks exactly two years since the first confirmed COVID-19 case in the United States, and Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief White House medical advisor, sat down for an exclusive interview with KNX In Depth on the anniversary.
When pressed on whether “everyone” will face some sort of COVD-related sickness due to the Omicron variant, Fauci attempted to clarify those comments from the Food and Drug Administration director.
“What she was referring to is that Omicron is such a highly transmissible virus that it will essentially be exposed to virtually everybody because of its ability to transmit from person-to-person,” Fauci said.
That means, Fauci continued, that everyone will likely be exposed to the variant and maybe even get infected, but being infected does not necessarily mean a symptomatic COVID experience where one gets sick. Especially, he said, if vaccination protocols are followed.
“We know very, very clearly from good data with [the Delta variant], and there’s no reason to believe it’s going to be any different with Omicron, that when you look at the people that…the likelihood of getting infected, of requiring hospitalization, or of dying, is much, much higher in an unvaccinated person that a vaccinated person,” Fauci said.
In discussing the confusion, Fauci reiterated that just because illness could be less severe does not mean that contracting the Omicron variant is “no big deal.”
“You don’t want people to feel that…‘everyone is going to be just fine’ with Omicron. That’s not the case,” he said. “You’re gonna see people that are hospitalized and there are going to be people who die…you still need to protect yourself because you don’t know.”
Will COVID protocols last forever?
With the potential for new variants, many wonder - is this the new normal? Listen to Dr. Fauci's thoughtful answer below on KNX In Depth.