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COVID-19 cases could double in the U.S. over the next 2 months, new model projects

A new model projects that COVID-19 cases in the United States might double in the next two months.

Pedestrians wear face coverings to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020, in Portland, Maine.
Pedestrians wear face coverings to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020, in Portland, Maine.
Robert F. Bukaty, Associated Press

A new model projects that cases of the novel coronavirus could double in the United States over the next months, CNN reports.

  • The U.S. would reach 20 million total cases in that scenario.

What’s going on?

The Washington University in St. Louis forecasting model projects that the U.S. could double its currently COVID-19 case numbers — which is about 12.4 million reported infections — by Jan. 20.

  • The prediction comes as the U.S. has seen more than 3.1 million infections in the start of November, which is the most in one month ever, according to CNN.

Dr. James Phillips, chief of disaster medicine at George Washington University Hospital, said he is “terrified” about what is happening during the fall, which I wrote about for the Deseret News.

  • “We’re going to see an unprecedented surge of cases following Thanksgiving this year, and if people don’t learn from Thanksgiving, we’re going to see it after Christmas as well,” Phillips said.

What you can do

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised Americans not to travel for the holidays because of the pandemic, warning the virus could spread when so many households mix together.

Dr. Anthony Fauci has told Americans to reconsider traveling for Thanksgiving because a huge surge could come afterward, according to CNN.

  • “We are in a very steep escalation of cases right now in the mid-fall season,” he said. “If in fact, you’re in a situation when you do the things that are increasing the risk — the travel, the congregate settings, not wearing masks — the chances are you will see a surge superimposed upon a surge.”
  • He said “the safest thing you can do is to confine the activities in your own with the immediate occupants of that home.”