Asked by CNN’s Fareed Zakaria about falling coronavirus case and death rates in the United States, Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said, “I don’t think, Fareed, the vaccine is having much of an impact at all on case rates. It’s what we’re doing right: staying apart, wearing masks, not traveling, not mixing with others indoors.”
“Basically, we’re getting over a huge surge around the late-year holidays, starting with Thanksgiving and on to the December holidays. This, essentially, was an accelerator for the virus. And now cases are plummeting. They’re coming down, followed by decreasing hospitalization, followed by decreasing deaths. But they’re still high. Our case numbers are still higher than they were at higher peaks,” Frieden said on “Fareed Zakaria GPS.”
Data compiled by Johns Hopkins University indicates the 7-day moving average of daily confirmed new cases in the US is now just below 100,000 – down from a peak of about 250,000 in early January. Previous peaks, in April and July, were around 30,000 and 65,000, respectively. The last time the 7-day moving average of daily confirmed new cases in the US was below 100,000 was in October.
“So we’re nowhere near out of the woods,” Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration, said. “And really, Fareed, we’ve had three surges. Whether or not we have a fourth surge is up to us, and the stakes couldn’t be higher – not only in the number of people who could die in the fourth surge, but also in the risk that even more dangerous variants will emerge if there’s more uncontrolled spread.”