Health experts believe most of Bay Area has already reached omicron peak

Luz Pena Image
Monday, January 24, 2022
Health experts believe Bay Area has already reached omicron peak
As Dr. Fauci says the U.S. is about 3 weeks from seeing omicron's peak, some Bay Area health experts believe most of the Bay Area has already peaked.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- For the first time, the nation's top infectious disease specialist, Dr. Anthony Fauci said the patterns are clear and we are about three weeks from seeing the peak of omicron across the country.

"Things are looking good. We don't want to get overconfident but they look like they're going in right direction," said Dr. Fauci during an interview with ABC "This Week" co-anchor Martha Raddatz.

Dr. Fauci confirmed COVID cases already peaked and declined in the Northeast and the upper Midwest, yet parts in the south and west are still seeing an increase in cases.

UCSF Infectious disease specialist, Dr. Monica Gandhi believes most of the Bay Area already peaked.

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"I think he is right that by mid-February for probably the entire country we are going to be past the peak and coming down to where cases are manageable," said Dr. Gandhi.

The Chief of the Emergency Department at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital is cautiously optimistic.

Luz Pena: "You are saying that last week you saw that peak and now you are seeing it go down a bit. What is it looking like today?"

Dr. Chris Colwell: "Today it went up just a little bit, kind of over the weekend. We are certainly keeping our eyes very close on the data to see of this is that plateau, but it's still not clear yet."

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As hospitalizations continue to go down across the Bay Area, UC Berkeley Infectious Disease expert Dr. John Swartzberg says we are getting closer to an endemic.

"Hospitalizations are going to lag behind case counts by a week or two weeks. Deaths are going to lag behind case counts maybe up to three or four weeks," said Dr. John Swartzberg.

Dr. Gandhi is projecting omicron could be under control by March even if there's a new variant.

"One model in England showed that we had 50% of the planet has seen omicron. If you have seen omicron you have actually developed T-cells and B-cells and broad neutralizing antibodies across the entire virus. So, even if you see another SARS-CoV-2 variant in the future you have immunity against the whole virus. Even if it changes here or here you still have so much immunity across the whole virus," said Dr. Gandhi.

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