Officials Warn 2nd Wave Of Coronavirus Could Be Deadlier Than Current Outbreak

Andrew Limberg
April 22, 2020 - 12:59 pm
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PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) - The head of the CDC has warned a second wave of the coronavirus could be more devastating than the one we are currently dealing with.

Other health organizations are warning of another coronavirus surge in the fall and winter.

Dr. Amesh Adalja tells KDKA Radio’s Lynne Hayes-Freeland that other strains of coronavirus are known to intensify spread in the colder months and mixed with the flu there could be a large surge to hospitals.

“It will be very challenging as we enter the fall without a vaccine with both flu and the novel coronavirus basically tag teaming,” said Dr. Adalja.

LISTEN: Dr. Amesh Adalja Explains Second Wave In Fall

Dr. Adalja says the summer/warmer months could see a decrease in transition of COVID-19 but while other coronaviruses in the past have slowed down in the summer, this virus is new and there is no immunity for it at this point.

“It may not be hindered by the weather,” said Dr. Adalja.

He adds that now is the time to prepare for a surge in the fall. That means testing, contact tracing, clinical trials for vaccines as well as making sure there are enough bed and ventilators for patients.

“We have to keep thinking about this as a continual threat and not stop our preparation,” said Dr. Adalja.

Dr. Adalja says that there are places where government officials can consider reopening businesses.

“This isn’t a black or white decision, there’s a lot of gray here and we have to find a middle path between the virus running rampant and inundating our hospitals on the one hand and a Wuhan-style lockdown where life stops as we on it on the other hand and I think there are ways to do this in a careful manner.”

Adalja adds when people do begin to interact, there will be an increase in cases but the key is making sure that there are enough health care facilities to deal with the number of cases of COVID-;19.

PA State Representative Dan Frankel of Squirrel Hills is sponsoring a bill that would boost COVID-19 testing and case investigations to prepare for the next wave.

He adds that Pennsylvania will need to hire more contact tracers to help get ahead of the next wave.

John Hopkins Medical Center says the United States will need 100,000 contact tracers.

 

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