Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, hailed Australia’s use of lockdowns to suppress the spread of the deadly virus
Australia’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic has been hailed as the “epitome of success” by America’s top physician.
Dr Anthony Fauci said Australia’s ability to ‘uniformly implement’ public health measures, along with ordinary citizens embracing the lockdown, helped save it from the worst of the pandemic.
“What Australia has done is proof of the pudding,” said Dr Fauci, who has helped lead the US response to the pandemic.
“When you consistently implement public health measures, whether it’s a full or partial lockout, you can turn off surges. It worked, ”he told The Australian.
Shortly after the World Health Organization officially declared a pandemic on March 12, Australia launched a number of strict lockdown measures to prevent the spread of the disease.
Australians flocked to the country’s beaches on Saturday as temperatures rose to 40C in some areas, residents were encouraged to move away socially (Photo: a woman at Bondi Beach)
Residents are encouraged to get away socially, but masks are not required (Photo: Sydneysiders cool off at Bronte Beach on Saturday during a heat wave on November 28)
Residents wear face masks as they shop in Herald Square in Midtown Manhattan on November 27 (pictured), where strict restrictions are still in place
Bondi Beach was busy this weekend as beachgoers tried to stay cool during the heatwave (pictured: woman buys crushed ice)
The borders were closed to all non-residents on March 20 and social distancing rules were introduced. Hospitality venues, such as pubs, cafes, restaurants and clubs, were forced to close, offering only take-out service.
The rules saw the number of cases drop significantly in April, with fewer than 20 cases reported each day at the end of the month across the country, allowing tighter restrictions to ease.
A second wave in Victoria in May was brought under control by a strict 112-day lockdown. The state celebrated 31 days without a new COVID-19 case or death on Sunday.
Australians have since reaped the rewards of returning to normal daily life with only a few restrictions in place.
A couple wearing protective masks as they walk through Madison Square Park in New York City on November 21
Shoppers wearing face masks line up to enter a Citadel Outlets store on Black Friday during the coronavirus pandemic in Commerce, Calif. (Pictured November 27)
Life is almost back to normal in Australia, with only a handful of restrictions in place (Photo: Sydneysiders enjoying the hot weather at Bondi Beach during a heat wave on Saturday)
Dr Fauci said much of the success was attributable to Australians accepting lockdowns as part of the biggest public health benefit.
He said that part of the struggle for the United States was the individualistic spirit of the country.
“Clearly, countries and states that do not adopt the restrictions are not blunting the curve as well as those that are. The epitome of that has been Australia’s success, ”he said.
Dr Fauci has expressed fears that the worst is yet to come after the country celebrated Thanksgiving over the weekend.
But he was optimistic about the promise of a successful vaccine, predicting that an effective vaccine against the coronavirus will be available from April.
People wear masks as they walk along Fifth Avenue with One World Trade Center in New York City on November 28 (pictured) as America suffers a second wave of covid
Nurse performs COVID-19 swab test as large crowds line up at a Bondi Beach drive-thru testing clinic (pictured in July) with an average of 10,000 tests per day in NSW alone
People are seen talking as they line up at a pop-up COVID-19 testing clinic in Rushcutters Bay in Sydney (pictured) with free testing available to all Australians since March
The United States struck more than 13.1 million infections on Black Friday as 205,000 new cases were recorded, likely made up of Thanksgiving figures when 20 states did not report data.
It marked the country’s 25th consecutive day with more than 100,000 new cases.
There have been more than 265,000 deaths in total, with five states establishing daily death registers this week and 23 states reporting more cases than last week.
The United States has reported fewer than 1,000 daily deaths just twice last week, while the two days leading up to Thanksgiving each recorded more than 2,000 American deaths.
AUSTRALIA VS AMERICA: COVID-19 IN FIGURES:
Total cas name:
America: 13.4 million
Total number of deaths:
Daytime borders have been closed:
America: On March 31, the United States closed its borders to a handful of countries, including China and Europe
Australia: March 20
Daytime restaurants were closed:
America: differs for each state. As of March 21, at least 25 states have closed restaurants and bars.
Australia: March 23