Contact tracking is now impossible in the south and southwest due to the increase in COVID cases, an expert says
Contact tracking has become impossible in some southern parts of the U.S. because coronavirus cases are increasing so dramatically, an expert claims.
Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of tropical medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, raised the alarm interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper on Monday as a number of states continued to report record new cases.
“The cases are increasing so fast that we can’t even do contact tracking anymore. I don’t see how it is even possible, ”Hotez said.
Experts have long considered contact tracking to be one of the most critical components of pandemic control, as it allows officials to identify, contact, and quarantine people after they may have been exposed to someone who has tested positive.
But in severely affected areas like the South and Southwest, contact tracking teams are struggling to keep up to date with every new case coming in, Hotez said.
Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of tropical medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Texas, raised the alarm in an interview with CNN on Monday about contact tracing issues (photo)
Experts have long considered contact tracking to be one of the most critical components of pandemic control, as it allows officials to identify, contact, and quarantine people after they may have been exposed to someone who has tested positive. Contact tracers work in Alexandria, Virginia last month
Coronavirus infections are now on the increase in 40 states in the United States
Coronavirus infections are now on the increase in 31 states, with Florida, Texas, Arizona and California showing the most alarming trends.
The number of cases in the United States now exceeds 2.9 million, and more than 130,000 Americans have died from COVID-19.
Sixteen states have recorded a record number of daily cases this month alone, and new COVID-19 cases have risen nationally every week for five weeks, according to a Reuters analysis of data from The COVID Tracking Project.
The U.S. has seen a 27 percent increase in new COVID-19 cases in the past week compared to the previous seven days. New cases per day across the country have reached record levels of over 50,000.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, explained on Monday that the rapid rise in the number of cases is considered a wave rather than a second wave, as the number has never fallen to where officials had hoped.
“We are still knee deep in the first wave of this,” said Fauci.
In many states, things started to accelerate after the blockades were lifted in May.
Governors in at least 24 states are now suspending or revoking their reopen plans due to the spikes.
The number of cases in the United States now exceeds 2.9 million, and more than 130,000 Americans have died from COVID-19. New cases per day across the country have reached record levels of more than 50,000, but deaths, which health experts say are a lagging indicator, continue to decline nationally
The states where the number of infections has increased since last week are: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico , New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Only four states have seen improvements in the number of cases – Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island – while the remaining states have remained stable.
Deaths continued to decline nationally in the week ending July 5, according to Reuters analysis.
However, a handful of states report a weekly increase in deaths for at least two consecutive weeks compared to the previous seven days, including Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, Texas, and Tennessee.
Health experts say that deaths are a lagging indicator because it takes time for people to get sick and die. Current mortality rates probably represent cases diagnosed about a month ago.
Officials say the current downward trend reflects progress in treatment and prevention, as well as the high rate of cases among young adults, who survive COVID-19 more often than older patients.
They have warned that the current trend that younger adults who make up the majority of new cases may increase the death rate in the coming weeks as they could spread the virus to older, more vulnerable people.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have predicted that the death toll could reach 160,000 later this month.