With government support, three coronavirus vaccines are expected to be studied in large-scale clinical trials in the next three months.
“The best thing we have done is measles, which is 97 to 98 percent effective,” said Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “That would be wonderful if we got there. I don’t think we would. I would settle for [a] 70.75% effective vaccine. “
In an interview on Friday, CNN asked Fauci if a vaccine with 70% to 75% efficacy taken by only two-thirds of the population would provide collective immunity to the coronavirus.
“No, unlikely,” he replied.
Educational effort on coronavirus vaccine ‘will not be easy’
Fauci noted that “there is a general anti-science, anti-authority and anti-vaccine feeling among some people in this country: an alarmingly large percentage of people, in relative terms.”
He said that given the power of the anti-vaccine movement, “we have a lot of work to do” to educate people about the truth about vaccines.
“It won’t be easy,” he said. “No one [who] think it will be easy not face reality. It will be very difficult “.
Fauci said the government has a vaccine education program to counter messages against vaccines.
“We have a program right now that will be extensive to reach out to the community,” he said. “They may not like a government person in a suit like me to tell them, even if I tell them. They really need to see people they can relate to in the community: sports figures, community heroes, people they are looking for to.”
But there is no indication that such a program is in place.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention administers many federal health education programs, but the agency’s spokesperson, Kristen Nordlund, referred CNN to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. , Which runs Operation Warp Speed, the Trump Administration’s effort to develop a Covid-19 vaccine.
In an email, Michael Caputo, a HHS spokesman, did not confirm the existence of a vaccine education campaign, adding that he “would hate to see CNN turned off.” [a] tremendously wrong story. “
Fauci gives some states a C for coronavirus efforts
Fauci made his comments on the vaccines during a lengthy interview with CNN that was part of the Aspen Ideas Festival and aired Sunday night.
When asked how he would rate the country for managing the coronavirus outbreak, Fauci said that some states were better off than others.
“Some states will be A +. Some will be A and others will be in C somewhere,” he said.
He singled out New York for doing “really well,” but declined to name the “C” states.
“There are some states where leadership and decision [to open up] it was a bit hasty, “he said.” There are others when the leaders did well, but the citizens did not listen to them.
Fauci said in states where people can be seen gathering closely without wearing masks, “that’s a recipe for disaster.”
He added that he understands that people, especially young people, want to be together after months of confinement. He warned those people that “they are not in a vacuum.”
“The fact that you have been infected means that you are likely to infect someone else who may infect another person who will then infect a vulnerable person,” Fauci said. “That person could be someone’s uncle, aunt, grandmother, a child with leukemia who is immunosuppressed. All people who are in serious danger of a poor outcome.”
Contact tracking isn’t going well, says Fauci
Until there is a vaccine, one key to controlling the virus is contact tracing, the public health practice of trying to contain an outbreak by isolating infected people, asking them who they have had contact with while infected, and then quarantining those contacts.
When asked how his contact tracking is going to the United States, Fauci replied, “I don’t think we’re doing very well.”
“If you go to the community and call and say, ‘how’s contact tracing going?’ the points are not connected because much of it is done by phone. You make a contact, 50% of the people because they come from an authority, they don’t even want to talk to you, “he said.
He recommended that the communities “put their boots on the ground and go out looking for people, instead of getting on the phone and doing the so-called contact tracing over the phone.”
But he added that contact tracing is hampered by the fact that many people infected with coronaviruses have no symptoms, and since they don’t know they are sick, it is impossible to trace their contacts.
He said that in areas where the virus is spreading in the community, 20% to 40% of those infected are asymptomatic.
“When the community spreads, it is insidious because there are many infected but asymptomatic people in the community,” he said. “Therefore, the classic standard paradigm of contact identification, isolation and tracking does not work, no matter how good you are because you don’t know who you are tracking.”