Biden says COVID-19 pandemic is “over” in U.S.


President Biden says COVID pandemic is ‘over’


President Biden says COVID pandemic is ‘over’

02:34

in a (n Interview on “60 Minutes” Sunday night, President Biden said the COVID-19 pandemic is “over” in the United States.

“The pandemic is over. We still have an issue with COVID. We’re still working on it a lot. … But the pandemic is over,” Mr. Biden said.

The interview was conducted as he walked the floor of the Detroit Auto Show last week. Gesturing around the hall, Mr Biden remarked: “When you notice that nobody is wearing masks. Everyone seems to be in pretty good shape. And so I think that’s changing. And I think this is a perfect example of that.”

Mr. Biden’s comments came just weeks after his administration asked Congress for billions of dollars to keep up its testing and vaccination efforts.

The remark contradicts statements by his own aides earlier this month when they urged the Americans to find one updated booster before a feared autumn and winter wave of the virus.

“The pandemic is not over yet. And we will remain vigilant and, of course, continue to look for and prepare for unforeseen twists and turns,” said Dr. Ashish Jha, the top COVID-19 White House official, told reporters on September 6.

The number of COVID-19 deaths nationwide is still averaging about 400 a day, a level that federal health officials have described as “still too high.”


President Joe Biden: The 60 Minute Interview 2022

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Officials have also signaled that a public health emergency declaration for COVID-19 is likely to be renewed at least once more this year.

But COVID restrictions have largely been lifted in the US by local health officials, and travel is back to pre-pandemic levels.

The pace of new hospital admissions from the virus has also now slowed dramatically in the wake of the summer surge fueled by Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5. Officials have credited widespread immunity to vaccines and previous infections, and the increasing use of COVID-19 treatments like Pfizer’s Paxlovid, with helping stem the toll the virus has taken despite a summer spate of infections.

Jha and others painted the fall booster push to ensure Americans can continue to “go to school, get back to work, and get back to their regular routines after the summer.”

But with the president’s pandemic funding requests still languishing in Congress, administration officials say they are now working to process most of them subsidized by the federal government Arms of the COVID-19 Response.

The president cited the pandemic as a major reason his approval rating is well below 50%.

“This is a really difficult time,” he told CBS News correspondent Scott Pelley. “We are at a turning point in the history of this country. We will make decisions, and we are making decisions now, that will determine what we will be like in the next ten years. I think you would agree that the impact of the pandemic on the psyche of the American people is profound.”

“Think of how that changed everything. You know, people’s attitudes toward themselves, their families, the state of the nation, the state of their communities. And so there’s a lot of uncertainty out there, a lot of uncertainty. And we lost a million people. A million people from COVID,” said the President.

“When I came into office, when I – I was elected, only 2 million people had been vaccinated. I got 220 million – my point is it takes time. We were in a very difficult situation. It was a very difficult time. Very difficult.”

CBS News’ Alexander Tin contributed to the coverage.



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