When I first started at the C.D.C. about two months ago, I made a promise to you: I would tell you the truth, even if it was not the news we wanted to hear. Now is one of those times when I have to share the truth, and I have to hope and trust you will listen. I’m going to pause here. I’m going to lose the script. And I’m going to reflect on the recurring feeling I have of impending doom. We have so much to look forward to, so much promise and potential of where we are, and so much reason for hope. But right now, I’m scared. We have come such a long way: Three historic scientific breakthrough vaccines, and we are rolling them out so very fast. So I’m speaking today not necessarily as your C.D.C. director, and not only as your C.D.C. director, but as a wife, as a mother, as a daughter, to ask you to just please hold on a little while longer. I so badly want to be done. I know you all so badly want to be done. We are just almost there, but not quite yet. We can change this trajectory of the pandemic, but it will take all of us recommitting to following the public health prevention strategies consistently while we work to get the American public vaccinated. We do not have the luxury of inaction. For the health of our country, we must work together now to prevent a fourth surge.
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