UVA Health officials disagree with Biden's statement of 'the pandemic is over'
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- President Joe Biden's commented on 60 Minutes about the pandemic being over, and it's making waves, particularly in the medical community.
Doctors at the University of Virginia Health System disagree with his statement, saying he's wrong.
"The pandemic is over. We still have a problem with COVID. We're still doing a lot of work on it. But the pandemic is over,” said Biden earlier this week.
Although UVA Health officials say they aren't seeing the numbers they saw at the peak of the pandemic, they say the numbers are still substantial.
Biden sat down for an interview to kick off the new season of 60 Minutes, but some of the claims he made, particularly about the pandemic, sparked controversy.
"We are still in a situation where 400 Americans are dying every day from COVID-19. We have 35,000 in the hospital,” said UVA Infectious Disease Expert, Dr. Bill Petri.
As of Wednesday morning, UVA Health has 16 patients hospitalized with COVID-19, including two patients in the ICU and three pediatric patients. Specifically, these patients have COVID pneumonia.
"One out of eight people who are admitted to the hospital with COVID is dying, unfortunately,” said Petri.
That's why health officials, like Petri, are advocating for the new Bivalent booster.
"The best thing is that an ounce of protection is worth a pound of cure. Vaccination is the easiest thing we can do,” he said.
Petri says although things are better, he does not think Americans are out of the woods.
"Well, I wish the president was correct that the pandemic is over," he said. "We are in a situation where things are improving. But, I don't think we should be satisfied."
With the fall and winter seasons coming, UVA doctors say there potentially be another spike of cases or a new variant.