Fauci: Return to pre-coronavirus normality will be ‘well into 2021’
The nation’s top infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said Friday that it will be “well into 2021” before the country returns to a level of normality resembling pre-coronavirus times.
“If you’re talking about getting back to a degree of normality which resembles where we were prior to COVID[-19], it’s going to be well into 2021, maybe even towards the end of 2021,” Fauci said on MSNBC.
Dr. Fauci discusses distributing the coronavirus vaccine to the public and returning to “normality”:
“If you’re talking about getting back to a degree of normality, which resembles where we were prior to COVID, it’s gonna be well into 2021. Maybe even towards the end of 2021.” pic.twitter.com/FHhdWhSsFb
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) September 11, 2020
Fauci made the comment when asked when people will be able to go to a movie theater without wearing masks. Fauci noted a theater is a high-risk environment, given that it is indoors and closed off.
The reason for the 2021 timeline, he said, is that even after a vaccine is shown to work and be safe, its distribution to millions of people around the country takes time.
“I believe we will have a vaccine that will be available by the end of this year, the beginning of next year, but by the time you mobilize the distribution of the vaccinations and you get the majority or more of the population vaccinated and protected, that’s likely not going to happen until the mid or end of 2021,” Fauci said.
People who are high-risk — the elderly or health care workers, for example — are likely to be prioritized for getting the vaccine sooner, though the administration has not yet released a detailed plan for prioritization.
While the Trump administration has started placing some orders, some experts are also worried there might not be enough vials, needles, syringes and other supplies needed to carry out the vaccination campaign in a timely manner, highlighting the array of daunting logistical challenges in the effort.