Is the winter wave of the covid virus really here? Experts warn that the epidemic is not over yet

new mutation of Covid-19 cases The US hit is expected to begin near Thanksgiving as the holiday season begins, public health experts have warned.

But with more Americans being vaccinated, it’s less likely to last long or cause the same amount of damage because there’s a level of protection this season that wasn’t there last year, they say.

“I don’t think the rise will be as bad as last winter because we have vaccines available and approval of younger age groups is a game-changer, especially in terms of hospitalizations and mortality rates,” said Monica Wang, associate professor in the community. Health Sciences at Boston University School of Public Health.

Dr. Saadia Khan, an epidemiologist at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, agrees.

“I remain hopeful with the approval of vaccines for children ages 5 to 11 that we are heading into a safer holiday season than last year,” she said.

However, the risk of a new wave of Covid-19 outbreak is real, and political leaders such as California Governor Gavin Newsom, whose state is still recovering from a wave of delta-changing infections that have closed hospital emergency rooms, are urging Americans to remain vigilant.

winter is comingHe said Tuesday at an economic summit, echoing the familiar but ominous warning made famous on the “Game of Thrones” TV show. “Covid is not taking the winter break.”

In fact, the winter wave may already be underway, according to the latest forecasts from Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington School of Medicine.

“We are seeing mounting evidence in the Northern Hemisphere that the expected wave of winter is beginning to unfold,” Director Dr. Christopher Murray He said in his latest update.

This is partly because cold weather is pushing people indoors and immunity to vaccinations has begun to decline.

“The third factor fueling these winter increases is the fact that people are much less careful than last winter, because the use of masks is much less,” Murray said.

Gypsyamber D’Souza, professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said a Covid rush is inevitable at this time of year.

“We expect to see a rise in new cases during the holidays as people gather more and travel more,” she said. “The good news is that more than two-thirds of Americans have been vaccinated and this means that any increase in new cases will result in a lower burden of hospitalization and mortality compared to last year.”

D’Souza’s advice is to be smart and use the tools we know work.

“It is quite appropriate for small groups of vaccinated people to come together,” she said. “We know what works. We have the tools. We know that vaccination and wearing masks in enclosed public spaces is helpful. We know that gathering outside, weather permitting, works.”

And when the surge comes, it will hit some states more than others.

“I think it’s likely that we will see hot spots in certain areas,” Wang said. “Specifically the states with lower vaccination rates like Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, North Dakota and Utah.”

Nearly 760,000 people have been killed in the United States by Covid, and more than 46.5 million confirmed cases have been reported since the start of the pandemic, according to the Latest stats Compiled by NBC News. Both are dismal numbers and world-leading.

Wang said that despite the fact that the United States was one of the first countries to get the Covid vaccine, it was “a poor performer compared to its peers in terms of vaccination rates.”

“This is certainly disappointing and also tragic because we can prevent so many deaths,” she said. “With Covid deaths, the vast majority are among the people who have not been vaccinated.”

While the number of new cases in the United States has been declining in the past few months, Europe has seen a significant rise, especially in Eastern European countries such as Romania and Bulgaria, where vaccine frequency and fear are on the rise. Church leaders and right-wing politicians.

The situation in Europe is so appalling that World Health Organization He warns that the continent could see another half a million deaths from Covid by February.

This week, though, travelers from Europe and elsewhere around the world It began flowing again to the United States After a 20-month ban on international visitors was imposed at the start of the pandemic.

D’Souza said Americans should not be alarmed by the return of foreign tourists.

“People who travel here are less at risk because they are required to be vaccinated before even boarding the plane,” she said. So if there was an increase here, it wouldn’t come from Europe. And don’t forget, we already have a high level of Covid infections here in the United States.”

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