With 56% of the United States being vaccinated for COVID-19, Dr. Anthony Fauci shared that he thinks deaths from the virus, caused most recently by the surge in cases due to the Delta variant, will begin going down this winter.
With more than 700,000 deaths from COVID-19 in the United States, seeing the numbers begin to drop would be another sign of the end of the pandemic.
Fauci shared in an interview that he thinks deaths will start to slow, but he also thinks there will be another wave of cases this winter, The Hill reported.
“Fortunately, right now, over the last few weeks, we’ve seen a turnaround in the slope in going down in both cases and hospitalizations. Deaths are still up, but it’s really flattening, so it’s a lagging indicator,” Fauci said.
He shared that along with deaths going down, hospitalizations and cases will also start to slow. Still, he could not say how quickly it would happen as circumstances like cold weather pushing people indoors will play a part this winter.
The White House chief medical advisor urged Americans to wear masks in crowded settings, both indoors and outdoors, even if they are vaccinated.
Lately, this has been a heated discussion topic as areas with improving COVID-19 rates have started to remove mask mandates. For example, masking was discussed in the San Francisco area, with mandates and restrictions being eased for the vaccinated.
Fauci’s advice lines up with the decision from San Francisco officials as he shared that masks are needed in areas experiencing COVID-19 surges.
“When you have a lot of infection in the community, even though you’re vaccinated, when you are not home but outside in congregate settings in the public, wearing masks I think would be very prudent,” he said.
The CDC reported that deaths are currently trending downwards with the seven-day rolling average of 1,767 per day on September 15 to 1,418 on October 7.