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Omicron variant peaking on the East Coast. So what happens next?

The omicron wave will move across the country now. Where will it head next?

People line up for coronavirus tests in New York.
People line up for coronavirus tests on Wall Street in the Financial District in New York on Dec. 16, 2021. Officials believe the omicron variant of the coronavirus may have peaked on the East Coast.
Ted Shaffrey, Associated Press

The omicron variant may have peaked already on the East Coast, a signal that the coronavirus variant could be moving fast across the nation, according to Dr. Scott Gottlieb, a former Food and Drug Administration commissioner.

Gottlieb said on CBS News’ “Face the Nation” that the omicron variant has already hit peak levels on the East Coast.

  • New York City, Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Florida, Delaware and Rhode Island may have already peaked, he said.
  • “ You’re going to start to see that in the statistics this week. You’re going to start to see those curves as epidemic curves bend down,” he said.

Gottlieb said the Midwest will see a COVID-19 wave next.

  • “The risk right now is to the Midwest, where you have rising infection, where they aren’t in the thick of their omicron wave yet. And you have states that had high hospitalization rates going into this,” he said.

Last week, Gottlieb said that the mid-Atlantic, the Northeast, New England, Florida, parts of the Pacific Northwest were close to peaking, as I reported for the Deseret News.

  • He said that the rest of the country won’t see a peak until February.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the omicron wave will likely peak in mid-January or, depending on vaccination numbers, in April, as I reported for the Deseret News.

  • These numbers appear on par with that projection.

The omicron variant does not mess around. It hits an area of the country and leaves high COVID-19 case numbers behind. Now, experts will monitor the variant to see where in the country it hits next.