US President Donald Trump has questioned the value of Anthony Fauci to the White House coronavirus task force, saying that he “inherited” the country’s top infectious disease expert, the media reported.
“I disagree with a lot of what he said,” The Hill news website quoted Trump saying in a Fox News interview on Monday when asked if he would put Fauci “front and centre” in the pandemic response if he could do it again.
“I get along with him, but every once in a while, he’ll come up with one that I say, ‘Where did that come from?’.
“I inherited him. He was here. He was part of this huge piece of machine,” the President added.
Trump has repeatedly undermined and criticized Fauci, Director of the US National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Last month, he retweeted a message that said Fauci “has misled the American public on many issues, but in particular, on dismissing #hydroxychloroquine and calling Remdesivir the new gold standard”.
He also has said that Fauci is a nice man but has “made a lot of mistakes”.
The total number of Covid-19 cases in the US surpassed 6 million on Monday, according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University.
US Covid-19 case count rose to 6,002,615, with the national death toll reaching 183,203, according to the CSSE, Xinhua reported.
The hardest-hit US state of California reported 706,731 cases. Texas and Florida both recorded more than 620,000 cases, followed by the state of New York with 434,100 cases.
Other states with over 190,000 cases include Georgia, Illinois, Arizona and New Jersey, according to the CSSE.
A return to campus for the fall semester has recently caused great concern over potential outbreaks among students across the US.
Over 30 states have reported thousands of coronavirus cases on newly reopened campuses, including the University of Alabama, where more than 1,300 students have tested positive.
US Covid-19 cases topped 5 million on August 9.
By far, the US remains the worst-hit nation, with the world’s most cases and deaths, accounting for more than one fifth of the global caseload and death toll.
Ninety-four per cent of patients who died of the novel coronavirus in the US had underlying conditions, while only 6 per cent succumbed to the disease directly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in a new report.
“For 6 per cent of the deaths, Covid-19 was the only cause mentioned,” Xinhua news agency reported citing the CDC report as saying on Monday.
“For deaths with conditions or causes in addition to Covid-19, on average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or cases per death.”
The diseases that CDC listed as the top underlying medical conditions linked to coronavirus deaths, included influenza and pneumonia; respiratory failure; hypertensive disease; diabetes; vascular and unspecified dementia; cardiac arrest; heart failure; renal failure; intentional and unintentional injury.
As of Tuesday, the overall Covid-19 death toll in the US stood at 183,579, while the number of total cases increased to 6,028,617, according to the Johns Hopkins University.
Both tallies account for the highest in the world.
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