MARTINEZ (KPIX 5) – Across California, coronavirus cases continue to rise sharply due to the omicron variant. Experts say that a rise in cases this sharp should mean it will die down just as quickly.
As of Friday, the 7-day test positivity rate was above 21%, according to the California Department of Public Health.READ MORE: UPDATE: 4 Minors Arrested In Connection with Shooting in Hillsdale Mall Parking Lot
In Contra Costa County, cases are up 153% over the past week.
“Every day we’ve had 15, 20 cancellations a day,” said Candice Gliatto of Citrus Salon in Martinez. “So we’re just doing our best, trying to ride out the storm. Hopefully it is over soon.”
Gliatto has been lucky, so far, with no significant outbreak of cases among her staff. Still, the surge has still had a tremendous impact.
“But a lot of them are moms,” Gliatto said of the challenges. “The schools, the daycares shutting down because teachers are positive or family members having scares.”READ MORE: UPDATE: Police Shoot, Kill Armed Suspect Outside International Terminal at SFO
“It’s been so frustrating,” says UCSF Infectious Disease Expert Dr. Monica Gandhi. “This has been such a prolonged pandemic. If we can just get into this time where we have calm.”
With businesses suffering and some schools closed, again, health experts know people are frustrated. They’re asking everyone to hang on for about a month.
“So we can only extrapolate from South Africa and the UK,” Gandhi said. “If we extrapolate from them, at least what the models are showing, and we have one here at UCSF, is that it will peak in 10 to 14 days. So like two more weeks.”
When cases do start to decline, it should happen quickly. Perhaps more importantly, there is a growing consensus that there is a calm coming after this storm, a period that might bring the most stability since the pandemic started.MORE NEWS: Oakland Police Arrest Four in Separate Weapons and Drug Busts
“Beginning of February, we’re going to get into lower cases, mid-February even lower,” Gandhi explained. “By March, we’re going to be through it, by the beginning of. ‘Through it’ meaning it’s going to leave so much immunity that hopefully we will stay down unless we get another variant.”