The University of Florida has released updated data from its COVID-19 model predicting how the Omicron variant of the virus will spread on the coming weeks and months, with some positive news.
According to The University of Florida and WFTV, COVID-19 transmission has already peaked in the State of Florida, but predicts that this wave alone will infect a good majority of the state’s population, significantly more so than the Delta wave in 2021. But preliminary data suggests that Omicron infections may be less severe than those caused by Delta, particularly among the vaccinated. Despite causing more infections, it’s possible that substantially fewer deaths will result from the Omicron wave. The University of Florida estimates that Omicron will cause 1/3 as many deaths as were caused by Delta.
This may not necessarily translate into recorded case numbers, however, as limitations in testing capacity, milder infections in the vaccinated, and reduced sensitivity of some tests to the omicron variant may inhibit recording of new cases.
Case numbers are expected to peak within the next ten days in Florida, with hospitalizations peaking around January 22. But hospitalizations are not expected to surpass numbers seen during the Delta wave.
Additionally, according to WFTV, the data suggests that there may not be another wave of COVID-19 infections in Florida for at least the next six months unless another serious variant emerges.
Stay tuned to WDWNT as this story develops.