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Dr. Fauci says he’s ‘not convinced’ about COVID-19’s origins

Where did COVID-19 start? Dr. Fauci has no idea

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, speaks during a House Select Subcommittee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, speaks during a House Select Subcommittee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, April 15, 2021, on the coronavirus crisis. Where did COVID-19 start? Dr. Fauci has no idea.
Amr Alfiky, The New York Times via Associated Press

Dr. Anthony Fauci said this week that he is “not convinced” COVID-19 was developed naturally, according to CNN.

What did Fauci say about COVID-19’s origins?

At an event two weeks ago, PolitiFact’s Katie Sanders asked Fauci about the origins of COVID-19.

  • “There’s a lot of cloudiness around the origins of COVID-19 still, so I wanted to ask, are you still confident that it developed naturally?” she asked.

Fauci, who spoke at the United Facts of America: A Festival of Fact-Checking event, said he was not convinced about the origins.

  • “No actually,” said Fauci, according to Fox News. “I am not convinced about that, I think we should continue to investigate what went on in China until we continue to find out to the best of our ability what happened.”

Fauci said a deeper investigation into the origin of COVID-19 is needed, according to CNN.

  • “Certainly, the people who investigated it say it likely was the emergence from an animal reservoir that then infected individuals, but it could have been something else, and we need to find that out. So, you know, that’s the reason why I said I’m perfectly in favor of any investigation that looks into the origin of the virus,” Fauci added, according to Fox News.

Fauci’s comments were made two weeks ago. But coverage of Fauci’s comments only came out to the media this week.

Origins and COVID-19

The question of where COVID-19 originated has been on the minds of the world for more than a year. Back in March 2021, we got our first hint of its origins. A report from World Health Organization and Chinese researchers said the most likely theory of the novel coronavirus’ origins is that it moved from bats to humans through another animal.

  • According to The Daily Beast, the report said “the evolutionary distance between these bat viruses and SARS-CoV-2 is estimated to be several decades, suggesting a missing link.”

The researchers said it is “extremely unlikely” the coronavirus started in a lab, according to The Associated Press.

But a recently unveiled U.S. intelligence report — which The Wall Street Journal reported on this week — found that three researchers from China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology got so sick that they went to the hospital in November 2019 before the first confirmed outbreak of the novel coronavirus.