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Gottlieb: 'The total number of deaths is going to start going up again'

Gottlieb: 'The total number of deaths is going to start going up again'
© getty: Former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Scott Gottlieb

Former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb warned on Sunday that mortality from coronavirus cases will rise in the near future.

Gottlieb noted that improved understanding of the coronavirus and an increased share of infections in younger people is currently leading to fewer deaths from it, but said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that “the total number of deaths is going to start going up again as the number of hospitalizations starts to spike again.”

“We’re going to see deaths creep up,” he added. “You’re going to have more deaths, tragically.”

Asked by CBS’s Margaret Brennan about President TrumpDonald TrumpSchumer: Impeachment trial will be quick, doesn't need a lot of witnesses Nurse to be tapped by Biden as acting surgeon general: report Schumer calls for Biden to declare climate emergency MORE’s claim that the virus was “harmless” in 99 percent of cases, Gottlieb responded: “I’m not really sure what he’s referring to,” speculating that the president could be referencing the number of people hospitalized relative to those infected, which was likely under 5 percent when asymptomatic cases are factored in.

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“But certainly more than 1 percent of people get serious illness from this… about 60 percent of people who get infected become symptomatic, about 10 to 15 percent of them will develop some form of COVID pneumonia and somewhere around 2 to 5 percent of them will become hospitalized, depending on what the age mix is of the people who are getting infected,” he added.