Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN's Jake Tapper on Sunday that even after the new COVID-19 vaccine is widely available, Americans should not plan on abandoning mitigating practices like masks and social distancing.
"I would recommend to people to not to abandon all public health measures just because you've been vaccinated," the 81-year-old immunologist said. "Because even though for the general population it might be 90 to 95 percent effective, you don't necessarily know for you how effective it is."
Fauci stressed that "it's not going to be a light switch," that allows Americans to immediately return to normal.
"It's going to be a gradual accrual of more normality as the weeks and the months go by as we get well into 2021," Fauci said.
The former head of the White House coronavirus taskforce also told Tapper that it does not serve the country well if the Trump administration does not cooperate and work directly with the Biden transition team to keep them up to speed on what is being done.
"You don't want to stop," and then start over again, Fauci explained. "You want to essentially keep going."