JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Experts say the United States leads the world with the number of COVID-19 cases—topping one million. And we’re all anxiously waiting for the number of cases to start to decline. But should we be prepared for a second wave of COVID-19 later this year?
Every year, we hear doctors talk about flu season, starting in October and November and stretching through the spring. Now the country’s top infectious disease experts say COVID-19 could also be seasonal.
Raymond Pontzer, MD, an Infectious Disease Specialist at UPMC explained, “I believe when we look at other coronaviruses, we know that there is a resurgence of those viruses as the colder months come upon us. So, it is possible that this may dissipate somewhat in the summer months and come back again in the fall.”
Experts with the NIH say countries in the Southern Hemisphere, approaching their winter seasons, are starting to see cases of COVID-19 appear, suggesting the disease could be seasonal. Experts also say if there is a fall resurgence in the U.S., researchers are working to better test and identify COVID-19, as well as trace contacts. Meaning, the country would be that much better prepared.
Dr. Anthony Fauci with the White House coronavirus task force says the NIH is also testing a vaccine that could be available in the seasons ahead, if or when– COVID-19 comes back. The World Health Organization reports that there are currently three candidate vaccines in clinical trials and close to 70 in preclinical evaluation.