According to President Joe Biden, the covid-19 pandemic is over. During a Sept. 18 interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” Biden declared, “The pandemic is over. We still have a problem with covid. We’re still doing a lot of work on it. It’s — but the pandemic is over.”
He added, “If you notice, no one’s wearing masks. Everybody seems to be in pretty good shape…”
This announcement struck a nerve with any in the health community.
Dr. Megan Ranney, who heads Brown University’s school of public health, disagreed on Twitter, calling the idea that the pandemic is over “malarkey.”
“Is the pandemic DIFFERENT? Sure. We have vaccines & infection-induced immunity. We have treatments. We have tests (while they last). The fatality rate is way down. And so we respond to it differently. But over?! With 400 deaths a day?! I call malarkey,” she tweeted.
Public health scientist Eric Liang Feigl-Ding, an epidemiologist and Chief of Covid Task Force at the New England Complex Systems Institute, also went to Twitter to vent about Biden’s remark.
“Heck no. With all due respect, @JoeBiden — you’re wrong. Pandemic is not over. Almost 3,000 Americans are dying from #COVID19 every single week.” he tweeted.
He added, “A weekly 9/11 is a very big deal. Don’t even get me started on #LongCOVID—wreaking havoc on millions more.”
While Biden has said the pandemic is over, the U.S. government still designates the covid-19 virus as a Public Health Emergency and the World Health Organization has announced that it remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, CNN reported.
A pandemic is defined by the National Institutes of Health as “an epidemic of disease, or other health condition, that occurs over a widespread area (multiple countries or continents) and usually affects a sizable part of the population.”
According to Johns Hopkins University, there were about 65,000 new covid-19 cases reported each day since the beginning of September, although reported cases are dropping in almost every state. Still, about 400 Americans are dying every day from covid-19, CNN reported.
From Aug. 16 to Sept. 17, there were 19.4 million new cases worldwide, NPR reported.
President Joe Biden removes his face mask as he walks to speak to members of the media before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House, Aug. 26, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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