Dr. Anthony Fauci’s comments from March 2020 have been making headlines in recent weeks as news outlets consider how well he predicted the pandemic.

  • But one quick look at his estimation for deaths was wildly wrong — but not in a good way.
The CDC has a very, very grim estimate for what’s next in the pandemic

What happened

Fauci said in March 2020 that COVID-19 could kill 100,000 to 200,000 Americans and infect millions, according to NPR.

  • “I just don’t think that we really need to make a projection when it’s such a moving target, that you could so easily be wrong,” Fauci told CNN at the time.
  • He said that 1 million to 2 million deaths from coronavirus would “almost certainly off the chart.” But, he said, “Now it’s not impossible, but very, very unlikely.”
  • Fauci said predictions are sometimes hard to take seriously since “it’s such a moving target that you could so easily be wrong and mislead people.”

Why was Fauci wrong?

In February 2021, the United States death toll from the coronavirus topped 500,000 — which is more than double what Fauci originally predicted, according to NBC News.

  • The novel coronavirus has killed more than 2,462,000 people throughout the world as well. More than one-fifth of the deaths came in the U.S.

More predictions

  • However, Fauci did predict that the novel coronavirus would lead to closed schools, businesses letting people work from home and canceled events, according to MSNBC.