In the span of a week and a half, the number of coronavirus cases in the United States has doubled, yet officials are saying this is still the first wave of the pandemic.
“We are still knee-deep in the first wave of this,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in a Facebook and Twitter livestream Monday. “I would say, this would not be considered a wave. It was a surge, or a resurgence of infections superimposed upon a baseline … that really never got down to where we wanted to go.”
The packed holiday crowds over the weekend contributed to that surge, leading to a shortage of hospital beds as well as threatening to infect others and set the economy back even further. This virus is notorious for how contagious it is — and how easily people can infect others without symptoms.
“We are in free fall,” said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, chief of infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital.