After months of warnings, it appears that the fears of many medical experts are coming true: Fall and winter are bringing a new national surge of coronavirus cases with it. Now, as colder weather pushes more people indoors and Americans prepare to gather for the upcoming holidays, many are saying that conditions could get grim as the season wears on. In fact, one expert told CNN that a few months in particular could be the very worst of the pandemic we’ve seen yet. “This winter—this November, December, January, February—could be the worst time in our epidemic,” Peter Hotez, MD, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, told CNN on Oct. 13. “Get ready to hunker down.” Read on to find out more, and for an at-home screening test for the virus, know that If You Can’t Smell These 2 Things, You May Have COVID.
The dire warnings come as more than 20 states have reported record highs for new cases within the past few days. According to The New York Times, the national daily average of new cases stood at 50,492 cases per day as of Oct. 13, which shows an increase of 19 percent from the average two weeks earlier.
Hotez went on to describe how a relatively brief decline witnessed at the end of the summer was giving way to the grim prediction that a second or third wave of the virus was about to hit. “We went down to the lowest point lately in early September, around 30,000-35,000 new cases a day,” he explained. “Now we’re back up to (about) 50,000 new cases a day. And it’s going to continue to rise.”
Read on to find out how bad things could get with COVID, based on the current projections from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington. And for more signs to be aware of, know that This One “Wacky” Symptom Means You Have COVID, Not the Flu.