Bill Gates is issuing a dire warning for the U.S. if the response to the coronavirus pandemic does not improve.
The billionaire philanthropist, who has led efforts around the globe to increase access to vaccines, said in a new interview that the country could face a mounting number of deaths unless the approach changes. Speaking to NBC’s Chuck Todd for a Meet the Press interview set to air on Sunday, Gates said that the death toll could continue to rise.
“There are lots of additional deaths coming if we don’t get our act together,” Gates said, via The Daily Mail.
The newspaper noted that Gates has been consistently sounding the alarm about the dangers of an inadequate response to the spread of the virus. Gates said in April that America could face a “nightmare scenario” without proper measures like social distancing guidelines.
As Mediaite reported, Gates said that America is running the “worst testing system” of any country, but that it would not be difficult to fix. He went on to say that while the U.S. has put significant funding into research efforts, the quality of the response to the pandemic has been “the opposite of what you would’ve expected.”
“Why didn’t we pay attention to the warnings? Why did we de-staff the positions that would’ve worked in these areas? But, you know, just trying to assess blame is not what the focus should be now. The focus should be now is get the diagnostics right.”
Gates has been a consistent critic of America’s efforts to contain the pandemic. As The Inquisitr reported, the Microsoft co-founder said back in September that the nation’s testing deficiencies could not improve until officials were willing to admit their failures and make the necessary changes. He noted that only the wealthiest Americans are able to take tests with results coming back within 24 hours.
“Part of the reluctance, I think, to fix the testing system now is nobody wants to admit that it’s still outrageous,” Gates said in an interview with Fox News, via The Hill. He added that there was no reason this should be the case, as the diagnosis machinery and capabilities were higher in American than any other country “by a huge amount.”
Gates has also been vocal about the dangers of re-opening the American economy too soon, saying throughout the spring and summer that it could lead to additional deaths if non-essential businesses were allowed to open their doors again before it was safe to do so. He has also criticized Donald Trump for the president’s insistence to restart the economy.