By Jim Smith

BOSTON (CBS) – In just the last 48 hours, Boston has been declared a high-risk zone for coronavirus infections.

Meanwhile, the virus continues to be in the news in a big way, with an apparent COVID-19 hotspot at the White House and Patriots star quarterback Cam Newton testing positive for the virus.

Cases are also now on the rise in several states, including Massachusetts.  

So, what’s the big picture?

Dr. Shira Doron, an infectious disease expert at Tufts Medical Center, says another surge is coming, but maybe not as serious as the first one.

“I don’t think it will be that fast or that extreme, because that was completely unchecked transmission with very little testing compared to what we have now, with no masking and distancing. So I don’t think that’s what we’ll see again, but I think that we will continue to see a slow rise, and we’re ready for that.”

The doctor does advise caution about the President Trump’s health, despite Trump saying he feels better.

“The really critical time period is not now. It’s when somebody’s had symptoms for about eight to 10 days. That’s where we tend to see people either turn the corner for good or develop that phase two, immune-mediated phase of the disease, where if they are going to have severe complications they develop them.”

This is also now a crucial time for the NFL and the New England Patriots. It’s uncertain just how seriously COVID troubles will ultimately impact the season.

“Even with a negative test, you can still very much be incubating the virus. A negative test during the 14-day period of potential incubation does not mean you’re in the clear. And so, if somebody is allowed to play while they’re potentially incubating the virus, a test at nine in the morning does not mean that you’re not transmitting the disease at one in the afternoon.”

The doctor admits we all have pandemic fatigue, but she says recent events prove this is not over and there’s a lot of work to be done.

Jim Smith

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