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Health officials sound alarm over surge of new coronavirus cases

Officials sound alarm over surge in COVID cases
Public health officials sound alarm over surge in new coronavirus cases 01:48

Chicago — Coronavirus cases are on the rise in 39 states and only three are seeing fewer cases. Average daily deaths are also rising in 10 states compared to two weeks ago. The Midwest has been especially hard-hit in recent weeks.

With the nation seeing nearly 50,000 new cases a day, public health officials have given an ominous warning.

"We are truly headed into the fall with it covered by a virus disaster on our hands," said Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

The country is seeing roughly twice as many new cases today as it did at the start of April.

"I hope these numbers jolt the American public into a realization it's on a trajectory of getting worse and worse," Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's leading infectious disease expert, said.

So is this still the first wave of the pandemic or the start of the second?

"I don't believe that this infection really is being transmitted in waves," Osterholm said. "It's more like a coronavirus forest fire where in fact, it just burns, burns and burns. But then as soon as you let up the break, then it all comes back again."

New York City — coronavirus
A medical professional administers a COVID-19 test on October 5, 2020, in the Queens borough of New York. Frank Franklin II / AP

There's a flare-up in the Northeast, where average daily cases are up nearly 40% in the last month. Over the weekend, New York officials broke up a rave of more than 100 people with no social distancing.

In Wisconsin on Monday, a judge ruled against a group fighting that state's mask mandate. That's where Mark Schultz is hospitalized. "I don't know if I'm gonna make it," Schultz told CBS News.

The bar and restaurant owner is angry — but resilient.

"All I want to do is survive this so I can take care of my family," Schultz said. "I have a 10-year-old boy. I'm going to have to fight this with every breath I got."

Schultz said he is doing much better.

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