Technology tycoon Bill Gates said life can get back to normal only when a second generation of Covid-19 vaccines is widely available and the virus is eradicated worldwide – a higher bar than was set for any disease in history.
“The only way we’ll get completely back to normal is by having, maybe not the first generation of vaccines, but eventually a vaccine that is super-effective, and that a lot of the people take, and that we get the disease eliminated on a global basis,” Gates said Sunday in an interview on NBC’s Meet the Press program. “That is where we can finally start taking all the problems that have been created — in education, mental health — and start to build back in a positive way.”
According to that standard, Americans might need to live for years, or for life, under social-distancing guidelines and other Covid-19 restrictions. It’s certainly gloomier than the assessment Gates gave in a Fox interview last month, when he said progress on vaccines might make it possible for a return to normalcy in the US by the summer of 2021. He said he expects several of the first generation of vaccines to get emergency approval by early next year.