WASHINGTON: The nation’s top infectious disease expert said Sunday that based on models, the United States could eventually see 100,000 or more deaths from the novel coronavirus.
Dr Anthony Fauci, who is a key member of the White House’s coronavirus task force, said, “Whenever the models come in, they give a worst-case scenario and a best-case scenario. Generally, the reality is somewhere in the middle.”
Talking about the worst-case scenario, Fauci said that 100,000 to 200,000 Americans could eventually succumb to the virus.
‘It’s possible,’ Fauci told reporters during a news conference outside the Rose Garden of the White House as he stood next to President Trump.
‘What we’re trying to do is not let that happen, so instead of concentrating on the upper and the lower, we’re trying to push it all the way down,’ he said.
Fauci added that social distancing and the shutting down of businesses and crowd gatherings were key to avoid a larger casualty count.
At the same time, Fauci urged Americans not to get “overly anxious” about the extremes of the models. “Models are as good as the assumptions you put into it,” Fauci said.
The comments come as the number of reported coronavirus deaths doubled to more than 2,000 nationwide in two days.
By Sunday, the US caseload, already the world’s maximum, rose to more than 135,000.