Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, attends a hearing of Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in Washington, D.C., the United States, on July 20, 2021.(J. Scott Applewhite/Pool via Xinhua)
The United States needs to learn the lessons of COVID-19 to be ready for future outbreaks, Anthony Fauci said, calling the culture at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "not optimal" for responding to a global pandemic.
LOS ANGELES, Aug. 25 (Xinhua) -- U.S. top infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci in an interview decried the political polarization that impeded the country's response to COVID-19, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.
In a taped interview that would appear at noon U.S. Eastern Time on Bloomberg, Fauci said he would advise his successor -- who has yet to be named -- to stay out of politics.
"The country has come to a state where even politicians are saying things that are triggering thoughts of violence and harassment against me and my family, but that's just the state of our nation," he said in the interview, adding that "I accept that. I don't like it."
The threats didn't play a role in his decision to step down, Fauci told Bloomberg.
Fauci serves as U.S. President Joe Biden's top medical adviser and the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He announced Monday he planned to step down from his roles at the end of the year after more than 50 years of public service.
Fauci said he expected the country would have moved past the COVID-19 pandemic after the first year of the Biden administration, but the disruption from the virus has lingered longer than the infectious disease expert anticipated, Bloomberg reported.
The United States needs to learn the lessons of COVID-19 to be ready for future outbreaks, Fauci said in the interview, calling the culture at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "not optimal" for responding to a global pandemic.
"The good news is they now realize that," he was quoted as saying by Bloomberg.
"We've just got to get more people vaccinated and more people boosted," Fauci noted in the interview, adding that "But I think we're really on the threshold of getting Covid to the point where it is at a level where it is low enough that we can actually not have it disrupt the social order." ■