The President of the United States, Joe Biden has declared the pandemic ‘over’ in the North American country, even as the number of Americans who have died as a result of COVID-19 stays on a steady rise.
According to .0.0Mr. Biden said that while ‘we still have a problem’, the situation is rapidly improving.
Statistics show that over 400 Americans on average are dying from the virus each day.
The head of the World Health Organisation (WHO) has last week stated that the end of the pandemic is “in sight”.
In an interview with 60 Minutes on CBS, Mr Biden said that the US is still doing ‘a lot of work’ to control the virus.
The interview aired over the weekend which was monitored by Africa Daily News, New York was partly filmed on the floor of the Detroit Auto Show, where the president gestured towards the crowds.
‘If you notice, no one’s wearing masks,” he said. “Everybody seems to be in pretty good shape…I think it’s changing.’
In August, US officials extended the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, which has been in place since January 2020, through 13 October. To date, more than one million Americans have died from the pandemic.
Data from Johns Hopkins University shows that the seven-day average of deaths currently stands at over 400, with more than 3,000 dead in the last week.
Africa Daily News, New York recalls that in January 2021, by comparison, more than 23,000 people were reported dead from the virus over a single week-long span. About 65% of the total US population is considered fully vaccinated.
Public health officials have expressed cautious optimism in recent weeks that the world is edging towards a pandemic recovery but continue to urge people to remain careful.
The US recently authorised new vaccines that match the version of the Omicron variant currently dominant in the country, with federal health officials asking Americans to keep their jabs up-to-date.
On 6 September, White House COVID-19 response coordinator Ashish Jha said it marked an “important shift” in the fight against the virus but underscored the need to “prepare for unforeseen twists and turns”.
Last week, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that the world has “never been in a better position to end the pandemic”.