Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, believes the U.S. is still in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In an interview Sunday on NBC's Meet the Press, Fauci, who also serves as President Biden's chief medical advisor, said the United States was "certainly" dealing with the pandemic, despite Biden himself describing the pandemic as "over" in September.
"As a public health official, I don't want to see anyone suffer and die from COVID," Fauci said. He added that between 300 and 400 people in the U.S. are still dying from COVID every day, and noted less than 15 percent of people have chosen to take the most recent vaccine booster.
"I think the idea that 'forget it, this is over' — it isn't," Fauci added.
Fauci also told host Chuck Todd that he was "very troubled" by the state of American politics, and particularly criticized former Vice President Mike Pence for claiming his response to the pandemic was politicized.
"I disagree with [Pence], I don't align myself with anybody, I'm a physician, I'm a scientist, I'm a public health person," Fauci said. "It doesn't matter if you're a Democrat, a Republican — I go by the public health principles."
The 81-year-old Fauci announced in August that he would be retiring at the end of 2022, and recently held his final White House press briefing. CNBC noted that he has worked with seven U.S. presidents, and has combated threats such as HIV/AIDS, Ebola, Zika, and the 2001 anthrax attacks.