Fauci warns of ‘localized surges’ in areas with low vaccination rates
Anthony Fauci on Tuesday warned of the possibility of “localized surges” of COVID-19 in areas of the U.S. with low vaccination rates if a certain segment of the population declines to get the shots.
Fauci, chief medical adviser to President Biden, said at a White House press briefing that he does not expect any surges that were as bad as the pre-vaccine days in the United States, and he says the country is likely past the threat of returning to having 1,000 or more deaths per day.
Danger zone: But there is wide variation in vaccination rates between parts of the U.S., leaving some areas more vulnerable to localized outbreaks, he said. Sixteen states and Washington, D.C., have vaccinated 70 percent or more adults with at least one shot, while four states (Mississippi, Wyoming, Louisiana and Alabama) are at less than 50 percent, according to New York Times data.
“There is a danger, a real danger, that if there is a persistence of a recalcitrance to getting vaccinated that you could see localized surges,” Fauci said.
However, he emphasized: “All of that is totally and completely avoidable by getting vaccinated.”