TAMPA, Fla. — “For the Labor Day weekend we’re suggesting that people continue to exercise caution,” said Dr. Jay Wolfson, Professor of Public Health, Medicine, and Pharmacy at the University of South Florida.
Health experts are worried about the impact this holiday could have on COVID-19 cases in the state.
“The warning is that there are still lots of people who are unvaccinated. The delta virus is really strong. There are a couple of others coming up behind it,” said Wolfson.
Doctors say however you choose to celebrate will be critical to what happens next.
“The most important thing we can still do is vaccines and even if you’re vaccinated as we know with delta, you may still be able to get sick so let’s be careful out there,” said Wolfson.
If you’re celebrating Labor Day, doctors want to remind you to avoid crowds and wear a mask around people if you’re unsure of their vaccination status.
“Remember, this virus spreads in respiratory expression, talking, singing, yelling, cheering. So even if you’re outside there’s a risk that this thing can float around,” said Wolfson.
Accord to new reports, as of mid-August, Florida was averaging about 244 deaths per day. That’s up from just 23 a day in late June.
Some researchers believe the state may have reached a peak in cases around the middle or end of August, so this holiday weekend will be telling.
“A peak does not mean a drop-off. It means the highest it’s going to be and then there might be plateauing and what we’ve seen in this virus is that that cycle lasts for about two months and then it goes down again and then we wait to see what happens,” said Wolfson.