COVID-19 will rage “like a forest fire” in a U. S. that has no clear plan to deal with it and has regressed to a dismissive, “pre-pandemic” attitude, a top infectious disease expert said Sunday.
America’s leadership is unfocused, Dr. Michael Osterholm told Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press, ” unlike other parts of the world that remain vigilant against the pandemic.
The spread of COVID-19 is “like a forest fire, ” warned Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.
“I don’t think that this is going to slow down. I think that wherever there is wood to burn, this fire is going to burn. And right now we have a lot of susceptible people, ” he said.
“I don’t see this slowing down through the summer or into the fall. I don’t think we’re going to see one, two and three waves. I think we’re going to just see one very, very difficult forest fire of cases. ”
Other nations have “done a much better job” of stopping the spread of COVID-19, said Osterholm.
“We haven’t done that.... We just have not really gotten the message across to the public yet that this is a very serious issue. We can’t shut down our economy, but we just can’t suddenly say we’re done with” COVID-19, he added.
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