Bill Gates Predicts Coronavirus Restrictions Will Continue Into 2022
Bill Gates expressed belief that restrictions in the US will continue into 2022 as he shared his thoughts on coronavirus.
Gates appeared on CNN to speak about the virus after the US Food and Drug Administration authorised the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for emergency use this weekend.
Though the vaccine will soon be rolled out across the country, the Microsoft co-founder warned that things are unlikely to get better immediately.
You can hear part of Gates’ interview below:
Speaking to host Jake Tapper, Gates said the next four to six months ‘could be the worst of the epidemic’, citing forecasts that predict more than 200,000 additional deaths.
He stressed that a ‘large percentage of those deaths’ could be avoided if US residents followed the rules ‘in terms of wearing masks and not mixing’, but the previous lack of cooperation means that ‘in the near term, it’s bad news’.
Gates implied his support for officials to take drastic measures when it comes to restrictions and lockdowns, saying it was ‘appropriate’ for bars and restaurants in ‘most of the country’ to close.
Tradeoffs will have to be made, but the next four to six months really call on us to do our best because we can see that this will end.
Tapper asked Gates when he thought life would ‘fully return to what we thought of as normal back in January’, with ‘no masks, no social distancing [and] no other protective measures necessary’.
Gates expressed belief that society will be ‘way closer to normal than we are now’ by summer 2021, but stressed that there is ‘risk of reintroduction’ of the virus until early 2022, unless the US helps other countries ‘get rid of this disease’ and achieves ‘high vaccination rates’.
And, of course, the global economy will be slowed down, which hurts America economically in a pretty dramatic way.
So we will have, starting in the summer, about nine months where a few things like big public gatherings will still be restricted. But we can see now that somewhere between 12 to 18 months, we have a chance, if we manage it well, to get back to normal.
Gates has been the subject of wild conspiracy theories in relation to the coronavirus vaccine, with some theorists claiming his foundation was working with Dr. Anthony Fauci to use the vaccine to inject microchips into people.
The businessman admitted he wasn’t ‘quite sure how to react’ to the claims, stressing that ‘vaccines have saved millions of lives’ and explaining: ‘That is what our foundation is all about and so our expertise was valuable here in getting the scale up of those things… I do worry will this make people not want to take the vaccine.’
Gates has expressed plans to join several other American leaders, including President-elect Joe Biden and former President Barack Obama, in having the vaccine administered publicly in an effort to encourage others to get it.
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