HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Three of Houston's top public health experts are warning we could be heading toward a third wave of coronavirus this winter, which is expected to be the most dangerous peak yet.
As COVID-19 cases sky rocket in northern states, breaking records with more than 90,000 Americans confirmed positive each day, Dr. Peter Hotez with Baylor College of Medicine says the April and July peaks we saw in Houston were just warm ups to what we should expect this winter.
"Now if you had to predict, I would say it's going to be a terrible winter nationally, (but) Houston might do a little better than other parts of the country," Hotez said.
Dr. Umair Shah with Harris County Public Health warns pandemic fatigue is creating openings for the virus to spread.
"Even if we're tired of COVID-19, it's not tired of us, and very quickly, this can take hold in our community," Shah said.
A serious lack of social distancing and reduced mask use, as we head indoors for winter weather and holiday gatherings, is a recipe for disaster, Hotez and Shah warn.
"I am worried a lot of Houstonians are not going to see 2021," said Hotez.
As Houstonians watch a health crisis unfold in El Paso, Dr. David Persse with the Houston Health Department says this should be the warning signal.
"El Paso needs to be that reminder to us that the virus has not gone away, and the virus will take advantage of any opportunity we give it," Persse said.
They recommend getting strict with quarantine pods again, reducing all social gatherings, keeping your mask on anytime you're in public, and getting tested.
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Houston's top doctors warn of third COVID-19 peak