"There's a possibility that the assault of the virus on our nation next winter will actually be even more difficult than the one we just went through," CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said in an interview with The Washington Post.
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"And when I've said this to others, they kind of put their head back, they don't understand what I mean."
Redfield told the Post that having two respiratory outbreaks would burden the health care system.
He had previously warned that the United States will feel the impact of the virus in months and years ahead, telling CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta in February that the virus "is probably with us beyond this season, beyond this year."
During a CNN coronavirus town hall in April, Redfield reiterated that next year "will be another challenging time."
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