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COVID cases are rising again in Florida. UCF epidemiologist says stay calm and mask up.

Photo: Pixabay
Photo: Pixabay

COVID cases are rising in Orange County and across Florida, but one UCF epidemiologist says this shouldn’t be cause for concern. 

The 14-day rolling positivity rate in Orange County continues to hover around 8.4 percent, corresponding with an increase in local cases and hospitalizations. 

But UCF epidemiologist Dr. Elena Cyrus says the good news is these numbers are nowhere near previous surges and the dominant variant is less severe than previous ones. 

Cyrus says what this means is that people who are at high risk of contracting the virus, should continue to mask up and use other COVID protocols. 

“For those who consider themselves to be at increased risk. Or have a particular vulnerability. I’m sure they will be a little bit more vigilant than others.”

Cyrus says the Central Florida area continues to report some of the highest rates of COVID transmission in the country.

“You know we may no longer be in a pandemic, because it’s not impacting every single country at the same rate. But we have still, a local epidemic, which is more regionalized and certainly for Florida, and for Orange County we’re still one of the most at-risk geographical locations throughout the United States.”

In a press conference this week, chief medical officer to President Biden Dr. Anthony Fauci said the US is out of the pandemic phase of COVID-19, which means that enough people have immunity against the virus, to avoid another surge.

Danielle Prieur is WMFE's education reporter.
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