Another new COVID-19 variant could arrive in the next three to four months, according to a Florida doctor.

What’s happening: Scientists are watching COVID-19 trends to determine when a new coronavirus variant may arrive.

  • The next new COVID-19 variant may arrive in the next three to four months, Dr. James Taylor, a medical doctor, told WINK News, a local news station in southwestern Florida.
A new COVID-19 variant surge ‘will happen again,’ experts say
Experts already have a prediction about the next COVID-19 variant

Why this matters: COVID-19 case numbers are slowly dipping down, a sign that the omicron variant is beginning to come down from its peak. Another new variant could, once again, delay the return to normal.

Yes, but: “I’m an optimist. I think things are going to continue to get better. I think our immune system as a society is going to get stronger and stronger, and this virus is going to get weaker and weaker. And as we see new variants form, they will get shorter in duration and shorter in intensity,” Taylor told WINK News.

The bigger picture: Experts recently told The Guardian it’s impossible to determine what the next COVID-19 variant will be like. It could be more transmissible, or it could be more deadly.

“There will be more variants after omicron and if they are more transmissible they will dominate. In addition, they may cause different patterns of illness, in other words they may turn out to be more lethal or have more long-term consequences,” David Nabarro, a special envoy on COVID-19 for the World Health Organization, told The Guardian.