Speed Reads

'very discouraging'

CDC official says 'we have way too much' COVID-19 in the U.S. to easily 'keep things under control'

There's "way too much" COVID-19 in the United States to easily get under control, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, the CDC's principal deputy director, spoke with The Journal of the American Medical Association in an interview this week about the state of the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S., warning about "a lot of worrisome factors" in the past week as states like Texas, Florida, and California experience a surge in new cases, per CNBC.

"What I think is very discouraging is we're clearly not at a point where there's so little virus that's being spread that it's going to be easy to snuff out," she said.

Schuchat went on to say that although there are steps that can be taken to slow the spread of COVID-19, the U.S. is "not in the situation of New Zealand, or Singapore, or Korea, where a new case is rapidly identified, and all the contacts are traced, and people are isolated who are sick, and people who are exposed are quarantined, and they can keep things under control. We have way too much virus across the country for that right now."

These comments, Axios notes, stood "in contrast" with the tone of members of the Trump administration like Vice President Mike Pence, who last week touted that the U.S. is now in a "much better place" with the pandemic.

Schuchat in the interview also said that while there "was a lot of wishful thinking" that the U.S. would be "over" the coronavirus pandemic by the summer, "we are not even beginning to be over this." Going forward, she said, "we just need to expect this virus to continue to circulate." Brendan Morrow