Dr. Anthony Fauci, a US leading immunologist and a member of the Trump Administration’s White House Coronavirus Task Force, said that there is a possibility that the coronavirus pandemic could reach the volumes of the 1918 Spanish Flu, CNN reported, citing the official’s comments during Georgetown University's Global Health Initiative online event on Tuesday.
“If you look at the magnitude of the 1918 pandemic where anywhere from 50 to 75 to 100 million people globally died, that was the mother of all pandemics and truly historic”, Fauci reportedly said. “I hope we don’t even approach that with this, but it does have the makings of, the possibility of … approaching that in seriousness”.
Calling the coronavirus crisis a “pandemic of historic proportions”, Fauci added that Southern and Southwestern states in America were the ones to closely watch now due to a resurgence of cases following a recent lifting of corona-related restrictions.
“They’re seeing record numbers of cases, mostly interestingly, among young individuals”, said Fauci, who is also a director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, particularly referring to California, Florida, Arizona and Texas, according to CNN.
“Individuals, mostly young people, were seen at bars congregated in crowded places, many of them without masks, which really adds fuel to the fire”, the official suggested.
Anthony Fauci has previously disagreed with Donald Trump in relation to the country’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, noting that the US was not “doing great” in relation to COVID-19 numbers. According to Johns Hopkins University data on 15 June, there are currently 13.3 million cases of coronavirus infection registered in the world which have resulted in more than 579,000 deaths - 136,493 of which occurred in the United States alone.
The 1918 influenza pandemic infected around 500 million people, a third of the world’s population back then. The death toll from one of the “deadliest” pandemics in history is estimated to have been somewhere between 17 million and 100 million.