The US is finally “out of the full-blown explosive pandemic phase” of covid-19, White House chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci said today (April 27).
His comments come as the US is logging around 47,000 new coronavirus cases each day, down from an all-time peak in January. Most people in the US have been infected with covid-19, and nearly 1 million Americans have died after testing positive for the virus. Fauci told the Washington Post he believes the US is “in a transitional phase,” and he hopes that the deceleration of case numbers will lead to a “more controlled phase and endemicity.” He echoed similar comments in an April 26 interview with PBS NewsHour.
Fauci believes the country is “out of the pandemic phase”
While he clarified to that the pandemic is ongoing, he said the US had moved on from a “full-blown pandemic dynamic,” with a peak of 900,000 cases each day, to a point where cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are much lower, and controllable.
“Right now we’re at a low enough level that I believe that we’re transitioning into endemicity,” he told the Post.
Fauci has had to move targets on transitioning out of the pandemic before. While he initially said he expected the US to move to the “control” phase by last fall, a spike in cases driven by the delta variant, and then omicron, threw a wrench into that initial prediction.
US covid funding up in the air
Meanwhile, US president Joe Biden is still pushing Congress for more covid-19 funding after a bipartisan deal stalled on Capitol Hill. Senators Chuck Schumer and Mitt Romney announced a new bill this month that would provide $10 billion in covid funding, with $5 billion going to therapeutics and the rest going toward vaccinations, booster shots, and testing.
But the most recent Senate package dropped nearly all funding intended to stop the coronavirus from spreading overseas, and vaccination rates in the poorest parts of the world remain much lower than in wealthy nations. Fewer than 17% of Africans, for example, have been vaccinated for covid-19.