Ready For Coronavirus Part 2? CDC Director Says It's Coming

(AP Photo/David Goldman)

We’re not even done with Wuhan Coronavirus Part 1 and don’t know when the country will reopen, but the director of the Centers for Disease Control said this morning that we should expect a second wave next fall or next year.

George Stephanopoulos brought up recent data from South Korea suggesting that people had been reinfected and asked how that affected research and testing in the United States. In his answer Redfield predicted “another wrestling match with this virus,” which other virologists and experts have also predicted.

Our working assumption is that individuals who develop antibody will have protective immunity; the question is, how long? But this is going to be the critical question that we will answer between now and net year, when it’s very likely that we’re going to have another wrestling match with this virus as it comes back….

We are beginning extensive antibody testing…to understand how much asymptomatic infection really occurred.

Is a second wave inevitable?

I think we have to assume this is like other respiratory viruses, and there will be a seasonality to it. That said, until we actually see it…we don’t know for certain. But I think it’s critical that we plan, that this virus is likely to follow a seasonality pattern similar to flu.

Redfield explained that’s why it’s critical that right now we expand our capacity to test and the capacity to determine for how long antibodies offer protection for an individual.

It’s understandable that we want to slow the spread right now, but given that this is likely to be a seasonal virus it’s even more crucial for us to get the economy up and running again.