(TRUMP, Sept 10): And I really do believe we're rounding the corner and the vaccines are right there..."
While President Trump continues to paint a rosy picture of America's grip on the coronavirus, top government infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci disagreed - saying the statistics are disturbing.
The outspoken director of the the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said the United States was starting the flu season with a high baseline of around 40,000 new daily coronavirus cases with 1,000 Americans still dying every single day.
The president this week argued that he played down the severity of the virus since it emerged early this year so as not to cause a panic.
Speaking on MSNBC, Fauci said on Friday that instead of rounding the corner, the U.S. may be facing new perils, adding:
"If you're talking about getting back to a degree of normality which resembles where we were prior to COVID, it's going to be well into 2021, maybe even towards the end of 2021."
Fauci said he hoped the country did not see a spike in cases after the Labor Day weekend as it did after other long holiday weekends since May.
Fauci said it was important to get those infection rates down before the autumn and winter seasons when people will be spending more time indoors.