National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director Dr. Anthony Fauci said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union” that Americans may still need to wear masks in 2022 to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Anchor Dana Bash said, “You and the president have suggested that we’ll approach normality towards the end of the year. What does normal mean? Do you think Americans will still be wearing masks, for example, in 2022?”
Fauci said, “You know, I think that’s possible that’s the case. It depends on what you mean by normality.
Bash said, “Right. That’s why I want you to define it.”
Fauci said, “It’s important because if normality means exactly the way things were before we had this happen to us, I mean, I can’t predict. I mean, obviously, I think we’ll have a significant degree of normality beyond what the terrible burden that all of us have been through over the last year as we get into the fall and the winter by the end of the year, I agree with the president completely that we will be approaching a degree of normality. It may or may not be precisely the way it was in November of 2019 but much, much better than what we’re doing right now.”
Bash asked, “Why do you think Americans might have to wear masks into 2022?”
Fauci said, “You know, because it depends on the level of dynamics of virus that’s in the community, and that’s really important because that gets back to something, again, you said, if you see the level coming down really, really very low, I want it to keep going down to a baseline that’s so low there is virtually no threat. It will never be zero, but a minimal, minimal, minimal threat you will be exposed to someone who is infected.”