A second wave of coronavirus has struck some states weeks after reopening — with infection rates spiking in Florida, Texas and Arizona, according to a report Wednesday.
“There is a new wave coming in parts of the country,” Eric Toner of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security told Bloomberg News. “It’s small and it’s distant so far, but it’s coming.”
Florida reported 8,553 new cases of the deadly illness this week — more than any other seven-day period — after lifting stay-at-home measures roughly a month ago, the outlet reported.
In Texas, hospitalizations spiked 6.3 percent to 2,056 on Tuesday, the largest daily increase since the pandemic emerged, according to the outlet.
And in Arizona, new cases reached an all-time high of 1,187 on June 2.
The surge has raised alarms among experts, even as the nation’s overall infection rate appears to be dropping.
“[Arizona] sticks out like a sore thumb in terms of a major problem,” said Jeffrey Morris, director of biostatistics at the University of Pennsylvania.
Still, scientists say they don’t know why certain states have been struck by a second wave while others haven’t.
California, for example, was the first to shut down its economy after an early outbreak near San Francisco, and has been slower than most to reopen. Still, the number of hospitalized people in the state this week was at its highest since May 13.
By contrast, in Georgia — where salons, tattoo parlors and gyms have been up-and-running for a month and a half — infection numbers have steadily dropped, baffling experts.
Overall, the nation’s infection rate this week rose 1 percent, the smallest increase since March.
Meanwhile, the White House Coronavirus Task Force reports it hasn’t found any direct relationship between states reopening and increased cases of COVID-19.