President Biden announced Wednesday the administration will hit 200 million vaccine shots in his first 100 days in office, far exceeding his original goal. After President Biden spoke, NBC 5 Political Reporter Julie Fine spoke to Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Chief Medical Advisor to the President.
“If you look at the track record now, one-half of the U.S. adult population is vaccinated, and one-third of the adults are fully vaccinated,” said Dr. Fauci.
We asked Dr. Fauci about the pause in administering the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, and what he says to those who were already concerned about taking it.
“What I say is to look at it from a different perspective. First of all, that adverse event that occurred in the six women with the J and J is exceedingly rare. It occurred in six women out of 7 million. That is less than one per million. They paused. When you look at how rare that is, that is less likely than getting hit by lightning. So that is really a very, very, very low level of risk. But nonetheless, just because we want to be extra specially careful about safety, the CDC and the FDA called a pause to take a look and see are there any other cases, alert physicians if they run into a patient, or a patient comes into their office with this problem, how best to treat the patient,” said Dr. Fauci.
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Dr. Fauci believes this reflects how seriously they take safety.
One year into the pandemic, some states, including Texas, have lifted their mask mandates. We asked Dr. Fauci about that. He points out there is a seven-day average of 60,000 new infections a day.
“So I say the better part of valor, to be prudent, is just continue to wear a mask until we get the level of infection much much lower than it is,” said Dr. Fauci.
And as for when does life go back to normal, or is there a normal anymore?
“You know I believe that there is, and it's really within our control to get it back to normal. It will be a gradual process. It’s not going to be like turning a light switch on or a light switch off,“ said Dr. Fauci.
Fauci says what they do know is the more people that get vaccinated, the three million people each day, the closer you get to returning to normal.