- The Washington Times
Thursday, December 24, 2020

An infectious disease expert who appeared on MSNBC Thursday warned Americans of succumbing to “vaccine euphoria” when a “decades-long battle” with COVID-19 may be required.

The commentary by Dr. William Haseltine, an infectious disease expert, came after anchor Chris Jansing lamented a growing “light at the end of the tunnel” mentality among the population in response to the creation of effective vaccines.

“People will kind of see that light at the end of the tunnel as an excuse to maybe loosen up on some of the things that they’ve been doing,” the anchor said. “And the question everybody has is: ‘When there will be herd immunity?’ Dr. Facui has acknowledged he’s moved his goal posts. Early on, it was 60%-70%. Maybe about a month ago, he said 70%-75%. Now he’s telling CNBC maybe 75% to 80-plus percent. Is that your thinking? And how long, realistically, should people wrap their brains around the fact that you have to wear a mask, you have to wash your hands. It’s a while before we’re going to have that herd immunity.”

The doctor concurred with the host’s concerns.

“I think there are a number of questions that you’ve asked,” he said. “The first is, what about vaccine euphoria? I think that is misplaced because it’s going to be a long time before most people get the vaccine. And we need, as just [has] been said very clearly and eloquently, we need to follow the rules and we’re not following the rules.”

The segment was quickly shared on social media by Grabien News founder Tom Elliott.

Critics of MSNBC’s panel noted the stark difference between a “decades-long battle” offered by the doctor and “flatten the curve” rationales by public officials during the contagion’s outbreak from China.

“I think in the next few weeks that we have our own homegrown strains,” the doctor continued. “We have to start thinking about adjusting the vaccines. So this is probably going to be much more like a decades-long battle that we have with the flu than a once-and-done battle that we’ve had with polio.”

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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