As the COVID-19 pandemic raged, the world witnessed a parallel struggle to persuade some people to take the deadly virus seriously. Many continue to believe that the virus is a hoax, while others are convinced that prayers and their own conviction that the pandemic is over will make it true.
Perhaps the biggest bone of contention is the usage of masks. People in various countries have staunchly refused to wear masks, even as others wander around sporting masks on their chins and necks. Some also argue that they have the right to not wear a mask - often going viral for their bizarre meltdowns.
But in news that is certain to dismay critics, US immunologist Anthony Fauci who is currently the Chief Medical Advisor to President Joe Biden has indicated that the country may not be able to take off its facemasks for quite some time. As per reports, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is of the opinion that mask usage could still be widespread in 2022. While he did not commit to any particular timeline, Fauci said that this would depend of the "dynamics of the virus".
"If you combine getting most of the people in the country vaccinated with getting the level of virus in the community very, very low, then I believe we’ll be able to say for the most part we don’t necessarily have to wear masks," he explained.
According to the well known physician, a environment where one could wander mask-less is also one where the COVID-19 virus poses "basically no threat". But despite his estimation of 2022 being the year when people can possibly go mask-less also implies that Fauci believes things will return to "a significant degree of normality" by fall or winter of 2021.