Since 2020, one of the most important questions on everyone’s mind has been: When will the pandemic end? Even as experts started saying that the Covid virus had the potential to become epidemic (meaning that while it might be tightly controlled, it would never go away), we wanted to know when the threat would be less present in our lifetimes — when things would really start to return to normal. The “normal” situation, whatever that means. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention relaxed its COVID guidelines in August, About 400 Americans on average are still dying of the virus daily. Thus, many people are surprised when, in 60 minutes on CBS In an interview last night, President Joe Biden said the “epidemic is over.” actually?
In the interview, Biden acknowledged that the United States had a “problem with COVID” before continuing, “We’re still doing a lot of work to solve it. It is — but the pandemic is over.”
These observations caused confusion and criticism in some cases. After all, in mid-July, the US Department of Health and Human Services extended the declaration COVID-19 as a public health emergency Across October 13. in August, I mentioned Politico An HHS spokesperson told the outlet that the agency plans to extend it by another 90 days in October and will provide 60 days’ notice to states before any possible termination or termination.
according to The Wall Street JournalSome public health leaders are concerned that Biden’s words in the interview may hamper the administration’s ability to seek more funding from Congress for coronavirus relief, especially in light of Republican opposition to the additional appropriations. Just this month, the White House asked Congress for $22.4 billion for COVID-19 efforts, such as developing and purchasing new vaccines. in March , Biden administration Without public health emergency funding, he said, the United States would not be able to purchase enough life-saving boosters, vaccines or treatments. And the The New York Times previously reported That White House officials had been anticipating a seasonal increase in cases, and estimated that as many as 100 million Americans could be infected in the fall and winter.
Some say Biden’s comments may not have been intended as a direct comment on the state of the pandemic, but rather a generally optimistic note about life in the United States returning to normal. “If you notice, no one wears masks,” he said on “60 Minutes.” Everyone seems to be in good shape. And so I think it’s changing.” But others are not convinced and find fault with this kind of vague message. Mahdi HassanPresenter of the “Mahdi Hassan Show” program on MSNBC, chirpOne of the (many) reasons not to wear masks is that people like Biden are telling them (falsely) that the pandemic is over.”
This is not the first time that a senior official has made such a statement. In April, Anthony Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an interview with Washington Post He believes the United States is now in a “transition stage” between epidemic and endemic. And some indicators appear to be positive: As of September 14, the current seven-day moving average of daily new cases (59856) is down 15.9 percent, according to Center for Disease Control. In addition to studying A publication last week by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) found that there were high levels of immunity (both from vaccination and previous infection), advances in treatments, and characteristics of the omicron subvariables that made them less likely to cause disease – all of which improved the rate of deaths. risk.
However, the World Health Organization says COVID-19 remains a public health emergency of international concern. in news briefing On September 14, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization, stated that the number of reported weekly deaths from COVID-19 “was the lowest since March 2020”. “We have never been in a better position to end the pandemic,” he said. “We are not there yet, but the end is in sight.”
But Dr. Ghebreyesus urged us not to lower our standards too quickly. “A marathon runner doesn’t stop when the finish line appears. She’s working harder, with all the energy she has left. So we must,” he said, asking governments to strengthen their COVID-19 policies and at least invest in vaccination. 70% of the population. (In the United States, about 68% of the population She’s completely immune.) “We can see the finish line. We’re in the winning position. But now is the worst time to stop running.”
Is the epidemic over? Many public health officials say not quite.
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