By Weston Blasi
That’s Dr. Scott Gottlieb, who was head of the Food and Drug Administration between 2017 and 2019, on the dangers of the delta variant of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus causing the disease COVID-19.
On Sunday, Gottlieb, during an interview on the CBS news program “Face of a Nation,” pivoted to an impassioned plea for more Americans to get vaccinated.
“This virus is so contagious, this variant is so contagious, that it’s going to infect the majority — that most people will either get vaccinated or have been previously infected or they will get this delta variant,” Gottlieb said.
The comments come as the delta variant continues to spread and the number of people testing positive for the coronavirus in the past seven days spiked to nearly 317,000, up 43% over the previous week, according to official numbers.
COVID-19 cases are now rising in all 50 states , led by spikes in Arkansas, Florida, Missouri and Nevada.
As of Monday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine tracker shows that over 161.2 million Americans are now fully vaccinated, equal to 48.6% of the overall population — 59.4% of all adults 18 and above have been fully vaccinated in the U.S.
According to the tracker, being “fully vaccinated” means people have had two shots of the vaccines developed by Pfizer /zigman2/quotes/202877789/composite PFE +0.71% with German partner BioNTech /zigman2/quotes/214419716/composite BNTX -5.62% or Moderna /zigman2/quotes/205619834/composite MRNA -1.56% , or one shot of Johnson & Johnson /zigman2/quotes/201724570/composite JNJ -0.57% ’s single-dose vaccine.