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Dr. Fauci Just Gave This Essential Virus Update

This is what he expects will happen in the next two weeks.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

Dr. Anthony Fauci spoke with Yahoo! Finance about the impact Omicron is having in the U.S., explaining what he expects in the coming weeks and months, including his concerns about the BA.2 subvariant spreading across the world. What did he say, and how can you stay safe? Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.


An Uptick In U.S. COVID-19 Cases Is Coming

Worried nurse sitting in hospital corridor

"Due to the fact that the infections are coming down somewhat, there's been a relaxation of many of the restrictions—not only here in the United States, but throughout the world," says Dr. Fauci. "And as expected when you have a virus like the sub lineage of Omicron, which is called BA.2, which has a transmission advantage over BA.1, which means it transmits more readily— that you naturally are going to see an uptick in cases."


Europe and U.K. Are Experiencing Increased Hospitalizations

One nurse looking at the medical ventilator screen.

"Some countries in Europe are seeing a very profound uptick that's actually resulting in an increase in hospitalizations and deaths," says Dr. Fauci. "Others like the U.K. are seeing an increase significantly in cases, but when we speak to our colleagues in the U.K. they say it does not appear to be associated with a comparable increase in hospitalizations, certainly not in intensive care unit bed usage, and not in the all-cause mortality in the country—at least at this point."


The Next Two Weeks Will Be Crucial

Nurse wearing a facemask while checking on a patient at the hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Where we are right now is in almost a transition period, where it continues to come down, the CDC has pulled back on some of the recommendations for indoor masking, and yet in the next week or two, we will see soon whether we are gonna see an increase," says Dr. Fauci. 

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We Don't Know What To Expect

Doctor holding syringe in hospital.

"How high is it going to go up?" says Dr. Fauci. "Or would it just go up a bit, and then just linger there and still not get any serious increase in hospitalizations or deaths? So it's really a work in motion, a work in progress that we're gonna have to see what happens."

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Vaccinations and Boosters Save Lives

Doctor vaccinating female patient in clinic.

"The thing we can do about it though, is several important things. One, if you're not vaccinated, as we've said now, for so long, get vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated and you are eligible to get a third shot boost, if you've had a two-dose mRNA, definitely get that booster shot, because we know that when you're dealing with Omicron, the third shot boost is absolutely critical to get optimal protection."

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How to Stay Safe Out There


Follow the public health fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated or boosted ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Ferozan Mast
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more about Ferozan