New coronavirus spread isn’t the feared ‘second wave’ – it’s still the first, researchers say

The rise in coronavirus cases seen in about half a dozen states across the U.S. isn’t the feared “second wave” — it’s still the first, scientists and infectious disease specialists say.

To be defined as a second wave the virus would need to retreat and reappear, or a new variant would have to emerge, said Ian Lipkin, a professor of epidemiology and director of the Center for Infection and Immunity at Columbia University. “The recent increase in cases does not reflect either.”

Covid-19 has sickened more than 2 million Americans and killed at least 113,820 since the first confirmed U.S. case less than five months ago, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. While new cases are on the decline in early hot spots such as New York state, cases are on the rise in places such as Texas, Florida and Arizona, with the U.S. still seeing roughly 20,000 new Covid-19 cases a day, Hopkins data shows.