BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) -With millions of people traveling this Labor Day, there are concerns from health officials across the country that it could lead to a new spike in coronavirus cases and deaths. We spoke with the state heath officer about his concerns.
Dr. Scott Harris understands the frustrations around COVID-19 and people not being able to be around family or friends, but he says if people don’t heed the continued warnings about the virus, then we could see another spike after this holiday weekend.
“Right now, if you’re over 65 and you get infected with this disease, about one out of 10 times you’re going to die. That’s the situation we’re talking about,” Harris said.
Harris putting it bluntly on this Labor Day telling us people don’t need to make the same mistakes they did over Memorial Day and Fourth of July. Two weeks after the Memorial Day weekend, there was an increase of 7,800 confirmed COVID-19 cases, over 500 hospitalizations and almost 120 deaths according to ADPH data. Two weeks after July 4th, there were almost 28,000 cases, 5,600 hospitalizations and 285 deaths.
We’ve made progress since then. State health leaders do not want that to be wiped away after Labor Day.
“We really need people to do the right thing because we’ve been able to have things open again and going again because numbers improved for a while because people were cooperating. If there are large numbers of people getting sick again, if our hospitals are filling up again then we’re going to be right back having to consider those same issues we had before,” Harris said.
Health experts continue to stress the need for you to stay away from large gatherings especially those indoors, practice social distancing and wear a face mask.