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WASHINGTON : US top coronavirus adviser Dr Anthony Fauci on Sunday said that "things are going to get worse" in the United States as the Delta variant has led to a surge in coronavirus cases in the country.

Fauci also said that he does not think the United States will return to lockdowns, even as the number of coronavirus cases in the country spikes largely because of the highly infectious delta variant.

"I don't think we're going to see lockdowns. I think we have enough of the percentage of people in the country, not enough to crush the outbreak, but I believe enough to not allow us to get into the situation we were in last winter," The Hill quoted Fauci's interview with ABC's "This Week."

He did, however, say "things are going to get worse," before contending that the country is "seeing an outbreak of the unvaccinated."

"We have 100 million people in this country who are eligible to be vaccinated who are not getting vaccinated. We are seeing an outbreak of the unvaccinated," he said.

Fauci added that there will likely be "some pain and suffering in the future."

"We're looking, not, I believe, to lockdown, but we're looking to some pain and suffering in the future because we're seeing the cases go up, which is the reason why we keep saying over and over again, the solution to this is get vaccinated and this would not be happening," he said.

The number of COVID-19 infections in the US has crept up in recent weeks largely because of the delta variant, which is now the dominant strain in the US. The cases, however, have mainly infiltrated individuals who are not yet inoculated, reported The Hill.

More than 164.4 million people in the US have been vaccinated against COVID-19, which is equivalent to 49.5 per cent of the total population, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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