White House coronavirus task force experts Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx warned on Tuesday that a composite of projections indicate that more than 100,000 Americans could die from COVID-19 in the coming months.
Both Birx and Fauci said that as bleak as those numbers would be, it is a far cry from the number of fatalities that could have happened had social distancing measures not been executed in recent weeks.
The data indicated that up to 2.2 million would have died without intervention. Instead, the official White House projection is from 100,00 to 240,000.
The White House experts on the virus said that the models take into account that not everyone are practicing social distancing.
Fauci also added that he is hopeful the number of fatalities could be kept below 100,000 if more Americans practice social distancing. But he added that the country should prepare itself for the large number of deaths from the virus.
"This is a number that we can anticipate, but not accept that it is inevitable," Fauci said.
As of Tuesday afternoon, more than 3,700 have died in the United States from COVID-19 among 185,000 confirmed cases. The number of US cases continue to increase each day. Of the 3,600 deaths more than 900 have been in New York City.
Tuesday's news conference comes as the United States prepares to go into the entire month of April with most non-essential businesses closed in order to prevent the spread of the disease. Nearly three fourths of the nation is under a "stay-at-home" order, which is designed to keep people from large gatherings for non-essential purposes.
"The reason why we feel so strongly about the necessity of the additional 30 days is that now is the time, whenever you're having an effect, not to take your foot off the accelerator," Fauci said.
Guidelines released by the White House on Sunday declared that the nation should continue with social and physical distancing throughout the entire month of April.