Dr. Anthony Fauci has warned Americans they must prepare to face new waves of lockdowns, mask mandates, and other measures should a new strain of the virus cause case numbers to increase.
Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Chief Medical Advisor to President Joe Biden, is warning that the public could soon face more restrictions on freedom.
According to Fauci, the BA.2 subvariant could soon increase the rate of infections in the United States.
He said that Americans must learn to “be able to pivot” back and forth between a more common way of life and the measures that were enforced during the height of the pandemic.
“If in fact, we do see a turnaround and a resurgence, we have to be able to pivot and go back to any degree of mitigation that is commensurate with what the situation is,” Fauci said during an interview with CNN.
Fauci warned that Americans “can’t just say, ‘We’re done. We’re going to move on.’
“We’ve got to be able to be flexible because we’re dealing with a dynamic situation,” he added.
However, despite the grim warnings, Fauci acknowledged the new variant is less fatal than the Omicron variant.
“The overall mortality is actually down,” he admitted.
“It’s a very interesting situation where the cases are going up, but it does not, at this point in time, appear to be any degree of severity.”
Fauci said he “would not be surprised in the next few weeks, given the fact that we’ve begun to open up, and we have an increase in the BA.2 variant, that we’ll be seeing an increase in cases.”
During the segment, Fauci seemingly dismissed concern over the crippling economic burdens associated with lockdown measures or other precautions.
A Johns Hopkins University meta-analysis of several studies in February found that lockdowns during the first COVID-19 wave in the spring of 2020 only reduced COVID-19 mortality by .2% in the U.S. and Europe.
“While this meta-analysis concludes that lockdowns have had little to no public health effects, they have imposed enormous economic and social costs where they have been adopted,” the researchers wrote. “In consequence, lockdown policies are ill-founded and should be rejected as a pandemic policy instrument.”
A study from the National Commission on COVID-19 and Criminal Justice last year found that domestic violence incidents increased 8.1% in the U.S. after lockdown orders were issued.
There have also been additional medical concerns over the impacts of lockdown measures.
The New England Journal of Medicine reviewed the psychological impact of people in quarantine, finding “numerous emotional outcomes, including stress, depression, irritability, insomnia, fear, confusion, anger, frustration, boredom and stigma associated with quarantine, some of which persisted after the quarantine was lifted.”
Fauci has faced criticism after he shifted positions and contradicted himself on a number of guidelines, including the usage of face masks and the threat of COVID-19 in America.
Over the past day, the U.S. recorded 52,884 new coronavirus cases, as well as 1,685 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.
Fauci’s warning comes after the New York Times reported last week that forcing the public to wear masks, take vaccines and booster shots, and stay at home, did not make a noticeable difference to COVID-19 case rates.
In last Wednesday’s morning newsletter, the Times said studies have revealed that parts of the country that enforced different measures during the pandemic showed little difference in case rates.
In fact, the newspaper noted that states with fewer restrictions have recently seen lower numbers of cases as people have returned to normal life.