Gottlieb says the country can take a reduction in COVID cases “to the bank”

Washington — Former Food and Drug Administration Dr. Scott Gottlieb is new on Sunday Coronavirus National infectious diseases are a “hopeful trend” and are caused by rising vaccination rates and high levels of immunity in the U.S. population, so Americans “bank” the decline in new cases. I can.

“In contrast to past trends where cases have begun to decline, we know that many of those declines are the result of behavioral changes, pulling back more and taking more precautions. I was a little skeptical because I was there. I wasn’t vigilant and the incident surged again, “Gottlieb said in an interview with” Face the Nation. ” “The decline we are seeing now can be brought to the banks.”

Transcript: Dr. Scott Gottlieb on “Face the Nation”

Gottlieb, who headed the FDA under the Trump administration, said cases and hospitalizations were declining nationwide, including in states like Michigan, which were fighting the surge in infections.

“I think these declines we see are really trapped at this point,” he said. “So I don’t think you have to worry that things will spike again when you take your foot off the brakes.”

Although the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus exceeds 31.7 million, the national average number of cases this week has fallen by 10% from last week, federal health officials said Friday.

Gottlieb said the outlook for a pandemic in the United States needs to be considered based on new cases every day, as well as the overall vulnerability of the “significantly reduced” population due to vaccination.

“Many older Americans and those most vulnerable to COVID and most likely to die of hospitalization or illness are currently protected by vaccination and are much less likely to have adverse consequences.” He says. Said. “Therefore, the current 10,000 cases are very different from the 10,000 cases a year ago when the most vulnerable Americans were not protected from the disease.”

Gottlieb predicted that the country would not fall below 10,000 daily this summer and said sporadic infections could occur, including outbreaks in summer camps.

“But we need to look at those cases differently,” he said. “Most of the most vulnerable Americans are protected by vaccination, so they probably represent far less illness, far less death. Therefore, we need to look at these things differently. “

Gottlieb said hospitalization rates are a better measure of the impact of the coronavirus on the country.

As new infections diminish, Gottlieb said authorities need to begin to consider ways to ease strict mitigation measures, such as lifting the outdoor mask ordinance and restricting outdoor gatherings.

“I think we need to lean forward more aggressively,” he said.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 225 million coronavirus vaccines have been given, and 53.1% of the US adult population receives at least one vaccination. However, the country has come to the point where supply exceeds demand.

Last week, President Biden Announced new tax credit For certain companies that are vaccinated and offer paid leave to employees to recover from side effects to motivate working adults to take their shots.

Vaccination is not convenient for some parts of the population, such as Americans who work all day and take care of their families at night, Gottlieb said. To encourage those people to get their shots, he suggested creating a 24/7 vaccination site to ensure a short waiting time. He also said that some Americans are unlikely to be as eager to get vaccinated as others, and vaccines need to be actively marketed to them.

“We will be vaccinated by more people, but the rate of vaccination will be slower,” he said. “That’s not a bad thing. We need to be aware of it.”

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