Medical experts say there will be a second wave of coronavirus in San Antonio, but when?

A look at the indicators of the coronavirus second wave

Medical experts say there will be a second wave of coronavirus. But when?

SAN ANTONIO – It is clear COVID-19 has not left our community and now, health experts say it’s not a matter of if we’ll have a second wave of infections — it’s a matter of when.

“In infectious diseases, it’s usually pretty typical for you to have a second wave. We are anticipating that,” said Dr. Dawn Emerick, Metro Health director.

Dr. Emerick is keeping a close eye on the indicators here in the city.

While cases increase, our positivity rate continues to drop and the time it takes to double our cases has slowed down, Emerick said.

“Right now, we’re seeing there’s nothing there for us to even have a small indication that there is a spike or a second wave coming. There will be. When will that happen? We don’t know,” Dr. Emerick said.

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Executive Director of the American Public Health Association Dr. Georges Benjamin also believes there will be a second wave, but he too is not sure what the pattern will be.

“It could kind of just kind of stutter along all summer as more and more people get exposed to the virus or it could behave very much like the flu season, meaning that we had a bad rise of the disease this spring. I mean, it's winter and then it could come back with a vengeance in the fall and winter,” Dr. Benjamin said.

Dr. Benjamin said now is the time communities should be planning.

“Look at reestablishing their supply lines, thinking about what they need if they had another wave for personal protective gear. Again, thinking about how they are going to get ventilators,” Dr. Benjamin said.

Dr. Angela Clendenin, who teaches at Texas A & M School of Public Health, has also been doing case investigations and contact tracing for Brazos County.

“From an epidemiological perspective, the most interesting thing is no two people have the same symptoms,” Dr. Clendenin said.

Dr. Clendenin said as the state reopens, there will be another wave.

“A second wave, multiple waves, until COVID becomes an endemic and settles into that cyclical pattern. It’s going to happen,” Dr. Clendenin said.

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About the Authors:

Tiffany Huertas is known for her in-depth storytelling and her involvement with the community.