Dr Fauci tells Americans to 'hunker down' for fall and winter

Dr Anthony Fauci said during a panel discussion on Thursday that Americans should prepare to 'hunker down' for the fall and winter as the US heads into flu season. 

The nation's top infectious disease expert was speaking on a panel of doctors for Harvard Medical School when he warned: 'Don't ever, ever underestimate the potential of the pandemic. And don't try and look at the rosy side of things.

'We need to hunker down and get through this fall and winter, because it's not going to be easy,' Fauci said. 

Fauci, who is the director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, also expressed concern over a possible Labor Day surge due to large gatherings across the US.  

Fauci's comments come as the US surpassed 191,000 deaths on Thursday. The nation has also reported more than 6.3 million cases of the virus. 

Dr Anthony Fauci said during a panel discussion on Thursday that Americans should prepare to 'hunker down' for the fall and winter as the US heads into flu season

Dr Anthony Fauci said during a panel discussion on Thursday that Americans should prepare to 'hunker down' for the fall and winter as the US heads into flu season

Earlier on Thursday, it was revealed that an official at the Department of Health and Human Services has been trying to stop Fauci from speaking publicly about the risks of COVID-19 in children. 

Emails obtained by Politico show that HHS official Dr Paul Alexander has been trying to instruct Fauci's staff about what he should say during media interviews. 

Alexander, who is a senior adviser to -appointed HHS assistant secretary for public affairs Michael Caputo, asked as recently as Tuesday for Fauci to avoid advocating for children to wear masks.  

'Can you ensure Dr Fauci indicates masks are for the teachers in schools. Not for children,' Alexander wrote in an email to Fauci's spokesperson ahead of an interview with MSNBC. 

'There is no data, none, zero, across the entire world, that shows children especially young children, spread this virus to other children, or to adults or to their teachers. None. And if it did occur, the risk is essentially zero.' 

In an August 27 email, Alexander wrote that he 'vehemently' disagreed with the infectious disease expert. 

That email was in response to a summary from the press office at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases about what Fauci planned to tell a Bloomberg reporter.    

'I continue to have an issue with kids getting tested and repeatedly and even university students in a widespread manner… and I disagree with Dr Fauci on this. Vehemently,' he wrote. 

Fauci, who is the director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, also expressed concern over a possible Labor Day surge due to large gatherings across the US

Fauci, who is the director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, also expressed concern over a possible Labor Day surge due to large gatherings across the US

Some emails show that Fauci's aides have pushed back against Alexander's requests.

One scientist at the institute wrote to Alexander in late

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