It’s been about two years since the Covid-19 pandemic began. Since then, we’ve endured lockdowns, stockpiled face masks, learned how to properly wash our hands and gotten way too familiar with Zoom. There has also been a lot of progress made in combating Covid-19. Testing and vaccines are both widely available, and both of these efforts help prevent the spread of the virus.

Many people are weary of Covid-19 restrictions and can’t help but wonder when the pandemic will finally be over.Dr. Fauci has some good news.

According to Dr. Fauci, the U.S. is moving away from the “full-blown pandemic phase” of Covid-19. That means that safety measures will happen more often at a local level instead of a national level. In addition, Dr. Fauci told the Financial Times, “There will also be more people making their own decisions on how they want to deal with the virus.”

Starting in November, the omicron variant of Covid-19 swept across the country and caused a sharp increase in sickness and transmission. More recently, new Covid cases are decreasing. According to the Washington Post, there are 44% fewer new Covid cases this week than last week. In the past three weeks, the number of hospitalizations due to Covid have decreased by 28%.

Dr. Fauci is optimistic that Covid restrictions will be eased in the near future. He said, “I hope we are looking at a time when we have enough people vaccinated and enough people with protection from previous infection that the Covid restrictions will soon be a thing of the past.”

There are already signs that restrictions are easing. California is set to let its indoor mask requirement expire on February 15th. Meanwhile, the governors of Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey and Oregon have announced the end to school mask mandates in their states.

Dr. Fauci did not name a specific date when the pandemic would end. Instead, he said “soon.” He also added that local governments could decide to add restrictions if necessary due to local outbreaks of the virus.

When asked about vaccines, Dr. Fauci mentioned that he doesn’t think frequent vaccine boosters will be necessary for everyone. He explained that people who are healthy, young and free from “underlying conditions” would probably only need a booster once “every four or five years.”

Meanwhile, CDC Director Dr Rochelle Walensky thinks it’s important to hold off before removing the masks. She explained, “I know people are interested in taking masks off. I too am interested. That would be one marker that we have much of the pandemic behind us.” She added, “Right now our CDC guidance has not changed.”

What would the pandemic being declared over mean to you? Do your kids have to wear face masks to school?