Public health expert pushes back against Trump's coronavirus optimism: 'This virus isn’t going to go away'

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Dr. Tom Inglesby, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, disputes President Trump's recent claim that the coronavirus pandemic will be resolved without a vaccine.

Inglesby told "Fox News Sunday" that despite Trump's optimism, COVID-19 will remain a problem in some form or another until a vaccine is developed.

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"No, this virus isn’t going to go away," Inglesby said in response to the president's remarks, which were delivered to reporters Friday. "Hopefully, over time, we’ll learn to live with it and we’ll be able to reduce the risk of transmission, but it’s going to stay as a background problem in the country and around the world until we have a vaccine.” Inglesby noted that medicine could help diminish impact.

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Inglesby warned that despite steps that some states are taking to reopen their economies, the U.S. is "still in the early stages of the pandemic." He said the numbers of cases have reached "a national plateau," and while hard-hit areas like New York City are now seeing declines, other parts of the country are now getting worse.

"Bottom line is: We’re not diagnosing enough cases and we’re not tracing their contacts," Inglesby said, stating that this is the best way to get a pandemic under control.

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The doctor warned that with reopening leading to greater social interaction, those locations currently seeing an uptick in cases will only get worse, potentially putting a strain on their health care systems. That means that as businesses reopen, people must remain vigilant in taking precautions to reduce risk.

“We have to do all we can to maintain space, wear cloth masks, avoid gatherings," Inglesby said. "The virus hasn’t changed.”