‘It’s up to us’: Fauci says US could have pandemic under control by spring

Published: Aug. 24, 2021 at 11:38 AM EDT|Updated: Aug. 24, 2021 at 5:40 PM EDT
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(Gray News) – The United States could have the pandemic under control by spring 2022, according to Dr. Anthony Fauci.

But it’s going to take a lot more shots in arms to achieve that goal.

“If we can get through this winter and get really the majority, overwhelming majority of the 90 million people who have not been vaccinated vaccinated, I hope we could start to get some good control in the spring of 2022,” Fauci told CNN’s Anderson Cooper Monday.

“We hope we’ll be there … but there’s no guarantee because it’s up to us.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 51.5% of the U.S. population is fully vaccinated, or 171.1 million people.

The government’s top infectious disease expert said he’s hoping for an uptick in the administration of COVID-19 vaccinations following U.S. government approval of the Pfizer vaccine this week.

According to Fauci, the Food and Drug Administration’s decision Monday should encourage people who cited lack of approval as a reason for not getting vaccinated. The FDA previously had cleared the Pfizer shots for use on an emergency basis.

Fauci told NBC’s “Today Show” that FDA approval will mean more “enthusiasm” for vaccine mandates by workplaces, colleges and universities, and the military. He says it will help boost U.S. vaccination rates.

The FDA’s decision clears Pfizer to advertise the vaccine, which Fauci says should help.

“If we keep lingering without getting those people vaccinated that should be vaccinated, this thing could linger on, leading to the development of another variant which could complicate things,” Fauci said.

“So, it’s within our power to get this under control and that is to get vaccinated.”

Copyright 2021 Gray Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved. The Associated Press and CNN contributed to this report.