Infectious Disease Expert Predicts When U.S. Coronavirus Cases Will Again Explode


Infectious disease expert Michael Osterholm on Monday debunked President Donald Trump’s claim that the U.S. will soon be in “very good shape” amid the coronavirus pandemic, instead cautioning of “an explosion” in new cases of COVID-19 from September.

Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, told CNN’s Don Lemon that the U.S. is “just really beginning to get to the really large part of the problem” with an average of 45,000 to 50,000 new confirmed cases of the virus per day.

“When school starts both at the high school level and in college and universities, we think we’re going to see an explosion of cases in September that will far surpass what we saw after Memorial Day and that this is just going to continue increasing, getting higher and higher, in terms of numbers,” Osterholm predicted.

Osterholm later echoed his explanation, in an op-ed he wrote with Neel Kashkari, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis that was published in The New York Times on Friday, for why the U.S. needs another lockdown to slow the spread of the virus.

“We believe the choice is clear,” they said. “We can continue to allow the coronavirus to spread rapidly throughout the country or we can commit to a more restrictive lockdown, state by state, for up to six weeks to crush the spread of the virus to less than one new case per 100,000 people per day.”

“That’s the point at which we will be able to limit the increase in new cases through aggressive public health measures, just as other countries have done. But we’re a long way from there right now,” Osterholm and Kashkari acknowledged. “The imperative for this is clear because as a nation what we have done so far hasn’t worked.”

Check out Osterholm’s op-ed here and interview below:

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