Dr. Anthony Fauci warned Tuesday that the new Omicron variant is spreading at a “truly unprecedented” pace — with COVID-19 cases doubling about every two days in the US.
“Certainly, this is unprecedented to see this rapidity with which any individual virus spreads throughout the world. It is really extremely unusual,” Fauci said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
The White House chief medical adviser estimated that coronavirus case numbers were doubling around every two days in the country — a rate that has seen the variant overtake Delta to account for around 73 percent of cases last week.
“It’s not surprising that just a week or two ago we had only 8 to 10 percent and now we have 73 percent of all the isolates are Omicron,” he said. “That is truly unprecedented in the rapidity with which a virus spreads.”
Still, Fauci said he hopes to see the surge in cases level off in the next few weeks, as it hits everyone it’s going to and more people receive their booster shots.
“When you have something that goes up this quickly, often you see it come right back down because what will happen is that either almost everyone is either going to get infected, particularly the unvaccinated or be vaccinated,” Fauci said.
“With the rapidity with which these cases are accumulated, we hope that when we do get a peak soon and it will be soon — it’s going to be a matter of a couple of weeks that we then start to see just as dramatic of a decline,” he continued.
He urged Americans to get booster shots to amplify their protection against the variant.
“It’s very important to underscore right now the importance of getting boosted [and] that those people will need to be protected from infection or if they do get infected, they’ll have a relatively mild course of infection,” he said.