Climax of coronavirus pandemic in California expected to peak on Friday

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- According to data collected by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, previously California was projected to reach its peak for coronavirus in terms of resource use and death rate at the end of April. The latest data points to this week.

Dr. Bob Wachter, chairman of the Department of Medicine at UCSF says we are at our near peak in the next few days.

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"We are likely unable to descent rapidly out of there. For the next week or two," said Wachter.

Data from the IHME projects a peak in mortality rates on April 15th with 48 deaths per day, and then a decline mid-May.

In the Bay Area hospitals are keeping a close look at these predictions.

Dr. Christopher Colwell, Chief of Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital Emergency Room says they're ready.

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"Certainly more ready this week than we were last week and continue to raise that readiness. As we sit here today yes we're ready but that is certainly going to depend to some degree on what that peak looks like," said Dr. Colwell.

New strategies have been put out as the hospital gears up for the potential peak.

"Depending on where the surge is necessary we can potentially double that capacity and we can use either tents or other unused wards to expend into," said Dr. Colwell.

UCSF Pulmonologist Dr. Stephanie Christenson says they have over 70 ventilators ready, but that doesn't take away the concern of the most vulnerable population like the elderly and those with pre-existing health conditions.

"We're following those cases really closely and we are really nervous about those patients the homeless patients. Nervous in a healthy way that we are really staying on top of those population, "said Dr. Christenson.

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On a wider scale, the peak nationwide already passed on April 10th. Professor Ka Kit Tung with the University of Washington has been analyzing this data closely.

"Compared to other countries, the U.S is not doing well. Its net infection rate should be 1.5 times of Europe, Germany and even Italy and two times of the epicenter of Wuhan China. That's because we don't have strict social distancing rules," said Professor Tung.

Tung's biggest concern now is a projected peak he predicts will hit the U.S soon.

"The third week of April for the United States is when the number of patients that have not recover will be on its peak," said Tung.

Nationwide today is the peak for projected COVID-19 deaths with 2,150 deaths.

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