SAN ANTONIO – Gov. Greg Abbott said Thursday that the coronavirus pandemic is not expected to peak in Texas until the end of April and one epidemiologist thinks “Texas is going to be the next hot spot.”
John Brownstein, an epidemiologist at Boston Children’s Hospital, said, “We can already see the cases starting to increase, it is the start of an exponential rise.”
Abbott said Thursday that more than 51,000 Texans had been tested for COVID-19 with 4,650 positive cases and about 70 deaths - more than triple the number of positive cases from one week ago.
Officials think Florida could also be an emerging hot spot for positive COVID-19 cases and the former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration Scott Gottlieb tweeted Tuesday that Miami could become an epicenter for spread.
Florida continues to show an acceleration in new #COVID19 cases, with Miami as one of a number of epicenters of spread. The state was probably heavily seeded at some point in early/mid February given pace of the case growth, which suggests there are multiple expanding clusters. pic.twitter.com/CBywYaBj3k— Scott Gottlieb, MD (@ScottGottliebMD) March 31, 2020
“Any intervention we do now will take weeks to see the impact,” said Brownstein.
Abbott issued an executive order Wednesday that extends social-distancing guidelines for Texas through April 30.
COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.
SPECIAL COVERAGE: See our special section dedicated to all of our coronavirus coverage
This story originally appeared on our San Antonio sister site, KSAT.