Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, offered a grim forecast of the coronavirus which included millions of confirmed cases and “between 100,000 and 200,000 deaths.”
Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Fauci noted the U.S. currently has 124,000 confirmed cases and more than 2,000 deaths.
“We’re going to have millions of cases,” Fauci said.
Fauci says it’s hard to know for sure, there are estimates based on assumptions and it’s a “moving target” but says: “Looking at what we are seeing now, I would say between 100,000-200,000” deaths from coronavirus. “We’re going to have millions of cases,” he says on @CNNSotu
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) March 29, 2020
WASHINGTON (AP) — NIH's Fauci projects possible 'millions' of US coronavirus cases, '100,000-200,000' deaths.
— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) March 29, 2020
Dr. Fauci says the U.S. will likely get millions of coronavirus cases & that 100,000 to 200,000 deaths is very possible, while stressing we just don't really know & that modeling is only as good as the assumptions built into it & that actions the US takes can flatten that curve.
— JERRY DUNLEAVY (@JerryDunleavy) March 29, 2020
The Hill adds:
The outbreak has upended everyday life, causing a mass closure of businesses and schools as federal and state officials enforce measures designed to slow the spread of the disease. Areas such as the New York metropolitan area have been hit particularly hard, producing concerns about a surge in patients overwhelming its health care system.
Fauci has continually called for social-distancing requirements to remain in place for an extended period of time. He said Sunday that lifting those restrictions would depend on the availability of testing kits that will be able to confirm a diagnosis within about 15 minutes.
“It’s going to be a matter of weeks. It’s not going to be tomorrow and it’s certainly not going to be next week,” he said.
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Watch his comments below:
Video of Dr. Fauci telling @jaketapper that "Looking at what we're seeing now, I would say between 100,000 and 200,000 cases… excuse me, deaths. I mean, we're going to have millions of cases." #CNNSOTU
These next few weeks could be pretty rough.pic.twitter.com/Vh6xB4Fele
— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) March 29, 2020
During the interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, Fauci also announced President Trump was no longer considering a travel ban or quarantine of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
The infectious disease specialist said such a ban would create “a bigger difficulty” for the federal government, CNN reports.
“After discussions with the President we made it clear and he agreed, it would be much better to do what’s called a strong advisory. The reason for that is you don’t want to get to the point that you’re enforcing things that would create a bigger difficulty, morale and otherwise when you could probably accomplish the same goal,” Fauci told Tapper.
“What you don’t want is people traveling from that area to other areas of the country and inadvertently and innocently infecting other individuals,” the doctor added. “We felt the better way to do this would be an advisory as opposed to a very strict quarantine. And the President agreed, and that’s why he made that determination last night.”