Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has warned of a substantial increase in coronavirus cases across the US this autumn if the country’s actions pertaining to the problem do not change.
Speaking to CNN on Friday, Gates said that “as you get into October and November, this thing [COVID-19] will be back in big numbers if we don’t restrain our behaviour more than it looks like we are right at the moment; our behaviour and our contact tracing is not working well”.
He added that the US continues “to have a very large case spread” and “it is embarrassing versus Europe or other countries”.
Gates also rejected allegations of the US having the largest number of virus cases because it is conducting the most testing as “completely false”.
“It’s fair to say that you can find more cases when you do more testing. But the US is experiencing a rebound even once you factor out the increased testing”, the Microsoft co-founder pointed out.
Gates also said that with the US “learning how to treat people better”, the country is “less overloaded” when it comes to treatment of all those suffering from the COVID-19.
“But the global picture and the US picture are both more bleak than I would have expected”, he noted.
Additionally, the billionaire expressed concern over the increasing spread of the coronavirus in Brazil and India, saying that “we do need to think about the world here”.
“Without US leadership it’s been hard to pull together a response. And now the developing countries are bearing the brunt of the burden”, he concluded.
Gates Slams US COVID-19 Testing
The remarks followed Gates’ interview with CNN in early May, in which he described US coronavirus testing data as "bogus" because of its inaccuracy and slow turnaround.
He said at the time that despite the increasing number of COVID-19 tests, “the United States does not prioritise who gets tested and […] does not make sure you get results in 24 hours”.
This came after Gates told the newspaper La Figaro in April that due to the virus, life is “not going to return to normal for one to two years".
According to him, the world can get through the first stage of the pandemic by developing a system that will function "without the risk of returning to the exponential phase of epidemic progression".
The US already has over 2.4 million coronavirus cases amid a drastic increase over the past month in California, Florida, Nevada, Oklahoma, and other states. The COVID-19 death toll currently stands at almost 125,000, according to Johns Hopkins University.