COVID-19 cases are climbing once again in parts of the country.
The city of Philadelphia has seen a 50% uptick in cases, prompting them to reinstate an indoor mask mandate starting next week.
And while San Francisco has the highest case rate in the state, what is happening back east may not happen here.
“In Philadelphia, it is very similar in terms of absolute numbers to where we are in San Francisco, however their rate of increase is about 85%, our rate of increase in the last two weeks is about 25%,” said Dr. Peter Chin-Hong of UCSF.
Omicron’s highly-contagious subvariant, BA.2, is fueling the spike in cases and even hospitalizations in some pockets of the country.
The U.S. State Department Monday ordered all non-emergency government staff and their family members in Shanghai to leave as COVID surges, and told U.S. citizens to reconsider travel to China, partially because of arbitrary enforcement of local health laws.
UCSF Infectious Disease Specialist Monica Gandhi said it’s a different situation over there.
Chinese vaccines are not as effective as ours, far more Chinese seniors are not fully vaccinated, and, “We have a lot of natural immunity through the BA.1 and they do not have a lot of natural immunity – they stayed pretty much locked down for two years. Putting that all together we are in a much better position.”
The uptick in COVID cases comes just as families prepare to travel for Passover and Easter.
Dr. Anthony Fauci said each individual will have to determine the amount of risk they’re willing to take in order to attend indoor dinners and religious events.
Still, nationwide, infections are up less than 6%.