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It's not over. COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the US

The U.S. continues to stumble into another COVID-19 surge. After a two-month decline, cases are rising in the United States and most states.

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It's not over. COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the US

One big mystery? One big unknown?

Nobody expects a peak as high as the one that occurred last year, when the contagious coronavirus version omicron ravaged the population.

Experts warn of the danger posed by the coming wave, which is caused by the mutation called BA.2 that's believed to be 30% more contagious. Hospitalizations will increase in the next few weeks, as they are already increasing in certain parts of the Northeast. They believe the case wave is going to be much larger than it appears, as reported numbers are vastly undercounted as more people test at their homes without reporting their infections, or even skip testing altogether.

The number of daily cases reported during the previous omicron spike was in the hundreds of thousands. According to data from Johns Hopkins, The Associated Press, Thursday's seven-day average number of daily new cases had risen to 39,521, an increase of 30% from the previous omicron surge.

Eric Topol, Scripps Research Translational Institute head, stated that the surge will continue to grow until it reaches about a quarter of the height of the previous "monstrous". He said that BA.2 could have the same effect on the U.S.A as in Israel where it caused a "bump in the chart measuring cases".

Experts believe that the U.S. has a greater level of immunity from past infections or vaccinations than in early winter to keep the surge under control.

Ray stated that the U.S. could end up looking like Europe. The BA.2 surge in certain places was "substantial" and had similar levels of immunity. He said, "We could see a significant surge here."

Both experts predicted that BA.2 would move slowly through the country. The Northeast has been the hardest hit, with more than 90% of all new infections being caused by BA.2 in the past week, compared to 86% nationally. The four states with the highest COVID rates per capita in the last 14 days were Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Alaska. Washington, D.C., which ranks among the top 10 in terms of rates of new COVID cases, was also home to Howard University. Howard University announced that it would be moving all undergraduate classes online during the remainder of the semester due to "a significant increase COVID-19 positivity" on campus and in the district.

According to Johns Hopkins data, some states like Rhode Island and New Hampshire saw their average daily number of new cases increase by more than 100 percent in just two weeks.

New Hampshire's increase in cases is occurring two weeks after closing all 11 state-managed vaccine sites. Advocates are urging the governor to reverse his decision.

Joseph Wendelken, spokesperson of the Rhode Island Department of Health said that the most important metric they are currently focusing on is hospitalizations. These numbers remain low. About 55 COVID-19 victims are currently in hospital, compared to more than 600 during the pandemic.

Officials attribute high vaccination rates to the government. According to state statistics, 99% of Rhode Island's adults have been at least partially vaccinated. 48% have received the booster dose which scientists believe is crucial in protecting against severe illnesses with omicron.

Vermont has a relatively high level of vaccinations and there are fewer patients at the hospital than in the peak of the first micron wave. However, Dr. Mark Levine from Vermont's health commissioner said that hospitalizations have increased slightly and the number of patients in intensive care units has not increased.

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there was a slight increase in hospital admissions for patients with confirmed COVID-19 in New England and New York.

Oregon Health & Science University modelers are projecting a slight rise in West Coast hospitalizations in the next two-months. This is despite the fact that West Coast cases have risen sharply.

Experts warn that states with low vaccination rates may be more susceptible to serious infections as the wave moves across the country.

Ray stated that government leaders need to be clear and polite when speaking to citizens about how to protect themselves and others following the lifting of COVID restrictions. After a sharp rise in infection rates, Philadelphia became the first major U.S. metropolitan area to reinstate its indoor mask requirement. Levine of Vermont said that there is no plan to restore any restrictions that were in place during the pandemic.

Ray stated that it would be difficult to implement restrictive and draconian measures. Ray said that there are tools available to reduce risk. Leaders should emphasize the need to monitor the numbers, be aware of the risks, and take precautions like wearing masks and having their vaccinations boosted if necessary.

Lynne Richmond (59) is a breast cancer survivor living in Silver Spring, Md. She said that she plans to get her second booster, and continue wearing her mask out in public, as more cases in her state and Washington, D.C.

She said, "I never stopped wearing my mask... I've remained ultra-vigilant." "I feel like this is the best I have ever done; I don’t want to go COVID."

Staff at the Tilton Veterans Home, which has 250 beds, still wear masks and social distancing. The veterans are permitted to visit places such as an antique race car museum or restaurants, but they cannot have separate rooms. Wait staff are also masked.

Experts say that Vigilance is a good strategy because the coronavirus keeps throwing curveballs. One of the most recent: New York State has discovered more contagious variants of BA.2. These are known as BA.2.12 or BA.2.12.1. Scientists warn that there could be new, potentially deadly variants at any moment.

Topol stated, "We shouldn’t be thinking that the pandemic has ended." "We need to keep our guard up."

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