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Birx says US must prepare for summer COVID surge as immunity wanes

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Deborah Birx, a senior member of the Trump administration’s White House coronavirus task force, said on Sunday that the United States should be prepared for a potential new surge of COVID-19 after a recent spike in infections in Africa. from South.

“They’re on an upward slope again,” Birx said of infections in South Africa on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

“Each of these flare-ups is spaced about four to six months apart. This tells me that natural immunity declines enough in the general population after four to six months for a significant surge to occur again. And that is what we have to prepare for in this country,” she added.

Birx specifically warned that Americans should “prepare now for a potential surge this summer in the southern United States.”

Birx has come under fire for failing to further speak out against former President Trump’s false claims about the coronavirus during his time in the White House.

In her new book, she discusses her internal efforts to push back as well as her first meeting with Trump, which she says lasted 30 seconds before he switched to Fox News.

His remarks come after South Africa saw a major spike in infections after the highly contagious omicron variant was first detected there late last year.

More recently, South Africa has recorded over 31,000 cases of COVID-19 over the past week, which is still significantly lower than the over 140,000 cases reported at the height of the omicron surge in December. , according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.

The country recorded around 5,700 new daily cases on Saturday, well above the figures of around 1,400 daily cases from the start of last month.