Rochelle Walenski said the latest statistics should be a warning to Americans
The director of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) expressed concern that the U.S. may be headed for a spike in coronavirus infections as more states weaken preventive measures and more people travel around the country.
In a virtual briefing by the White House COVID-19 response team, Rochelle Walenski said the seven-day average of new cases in the country rose to 5,3800 in the past week, while the two-week average ranged from 50,000 to 60,000 a day.
The number of new cases caused by variant strains of the virus is rising in U.S. states, Walenski said. This is especially noticeable in California, the most populous strain in the U.S., where the new variant accounts for 52 percent of new infections.
According to Walenski, all of this data should be a warning to all Americans that the pandemic is not over yet.
She said the U.S. is at a critical point in the pandemic and expressed concern that if the country doesn’t act correctly, it will come close to “the preventable surge we are seeing in Europe right now, while we are so aggressively ramping up vaccination.”
The White House task force reported that 81 million Americans, or about 25 percent, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, and another 41 million people, about 13 percent, are fully vaccinated.