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Bill Gates says we’ll never find a coronavirus cure

Published Oct 13th, 2020 11:33AM EDT

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  • Bill Gates believes President Trump’s coronavirus treatment shouldn’t be viewed as a “cure” because it won’t work for everyone.
  • We’ll likely never fully eradicate the novel coronavirus because no vaccine or treatment will have 100% efficacy.
  • Trump received a number of experimental drugs while at Walter Reed hospital, including an antibody drug cocktail developed by Regeneron that has been touted by some as a cure.
  • It has since come to light that Trump’s coronavirus symptoms were far more severe than what the White House admitted.

The number of coronavirus infections in the U.S. has been rising rapidly since early September and, unfortunately, there’s no indication that the situation will improve anytime soon. Over the past week alone, the average daily number of new coronavirus cases has hovered in the 50,000 range.

Meanwhile, new infections are reaching peak levels across a number of states. Wisconsin has been hit particularly hard recently and is currently the biggest hotspot in the country. This past Friday, the state built a massive field hospital just outside of Milwaukee because hospitals in the area were running at nearly full capacity.

The spike in coronavirus infections underscores the importance of developing an effective vaccine. And while such a vaccine may be developed and receive FDA approval before the end of the year, it’s important to remember that a vaccine won’t necessarily be able to fully prevent the coronavirus from spreading. As Dr. Fauci and others have emphasized over the past few months, the first incarnation of a coronavirus vaccine may only work in 50-60% of patients.

Meanwhile, President Trump’s impressive recovery from the coronavirus — thanks in part to experimental antibody drugs that aren’t even on the market yet — has led some to view antibody drugs as a cure-all. But similar to a vaccine, there’s no indication that the drug cocktail Trump received is going to work for people across the board.

Touching on this topic during an appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press, Bill Gates articulated that it’s not helpful to view coronavirus drugs as a cure.

“The word ‘cure’ is inappropriate because it won’t work for everyone,” Gates explained. “But of all the therapeutics, this is the most promising.”

Gates added, “With the monoclonal antibodies, it’s only once somebody tests positive, show symptoms and they’re old enough they’re at risk. That’s the target for this therapeutic.” He went on to say that the world won’t return to normal until there’s a vaccine that is “super effective and that a lot of the people take.” Even then, however, it won’t be 100% effective.

To the latter point, recent surveys have indicated that nearly 50% of people would not be comfortable taking a coronavirus vaccine.

Recently, Dr. Fauci articulated that life in the U.S. won’t return to normal until 2022, in a best-case scenario.

“I believe that by the time we get to the end of 2021,” Fauci said a few weeks ago. “If everyone gets vaccinated and we continue to implement the public-health measures that I have been talking about incessantly over the last several months — they’re not universally adhered to — if we do that, plus the vaccine, we’ll get to the point where the level of virus will be so low, and maybe even, you know, close to absent.”

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.

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