Fauci says we may be able to go to a movie theater without having to wear masks in 'late fall or early winter'
- We may be able to go to movie theaters without wearing masks by the end of the year, Fauci said.
- Fauci said on a podcast that large maskless gatherings could resume by "late fall or early winter."
- He said that until then, people should continue to wear masks and get vaccinated.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US's top expert on infectious disease, predicted that we would be able to gather in large groups unmasked and inside by the end of 2021 or early 2022.
Fauci made the prediction on Monday's "Politico Dispatch" podcast when he was asked when he thought people in the United States would be able to gather in a crowded movie theater without masks.
"I think it's going to be late fall or early winter that we'll be able to do that," he said.
In the meantime, people need to continue to wear masks, and the US government needs to encourage people to get vaccinated to help stop the spread of COVID-19, he said.
Fauci has made similar comments before. At a New York Press Club briefing in January, he said that if 70% to 85% of the population were vaccinated by late fall, people could return to crowded theaters for movies, plays, and musicals while wearing masks.
"I think there's a reasonable chance that if we do get that number and that percentage of people vaccinated that we will be able to go to a movie or to go to a theater," he said.
He has also said that the return of relatively normal group activities depends on when herd immunity is achieved.