Fauci told ABC's "Good Morning America" on Thursday that vaccines being developed "are going to have a major positive impact" once they start being deployed in December and early into next year. He says he hopes by April, May and June "the ordinary citizen should be able to get" a vaccine.
In the meantime, Fauci says there are fundamental things Americans can do to stem the spread of the deadly virus. They include "universal and uniform" wearing of masks, avoiding crowds, keeping social distance and washing hands. He says that sounds simple against a very difficult challenge but "it really does make a difference."
The nation's top infectious disease expert also said he doesn't believe the United States will need to go into lockdown to fight the coronavirus if people double down on wearing masks and social distancing.
Fauci's message echoes that of President-elect Joe Biden, who this week signaled strongly that fighting the raging pandemic will be the immediate priority of his new administration.
The U.S. leads the world with more than 241,000 deaths and 10 million coronavirus cases.
ABC Owned Television Stations contributed to this report.