Fauci urges face masks still needed after getting COVID vaccine: ‘Don’t know how effective it is’

November 16, 2020
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Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has been continually giving reliable advice and educating the public on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fauci said it will still be essential to wear face masks, practice social distancing and follow COVID-19 guidelines after a vaccine becomes available in the United States, the New York Post reports.

The disease expert urged Americans not to forget about all public health measures after the vaccine is accessible.

“Because even though for the general population it might be 90 to 95 percent effective, you don’t necessarily know for you how effective it is,” Fauci said.

Fauci explained that once he receives a vaccine, he still will pay attention to guidelines for slowing the spread of COVID-19.

“I can feel more relaxed in essentially not having the stringency that we have right now, but I think abandoning it completely would not be a good idea,” Fauci said.

According to the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Americans are closer to a COVID-19 vaccine that may restore a sense of normalcy.

The doctor predicted that in early December, experts will know whether a COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective. However, the doctor said that widespread availability would probably not happen until next year.

“We will know whether a vaccine is safe and effective by the end of November, beginning of December,” Fauci said. “The amount of doses that will be available in December will not certainly be enough to vaccinate everybody -- you’ll have to wait several months into 2021.”

Fauci added that the vaccination of a “substantial proportion of the population” that could have a “significant impact on the dynamics of the outbreak” may not be possible until mid-April.

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