Doctors concerned holidays will lead to increase in COVID-19 exposures

ORLANDO, Fla. — Doctors in Central Florida are watching the rise in coronavirus cases in Europe and here in the U.S.

Doctors told Channel 9 on Thursday that the next two weeks are crucial and much hinges on Florida being in Phase 3 of reopening.

Halloween comes just after that two-week timeline.

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Doctors aren’t saying not to do things but they are encouraging people to be vigilant with mitigation efforts and to know the risks.

In Florida, many new cases are being attributed to younger folks. College areas are hot spots.

But so are birthday parties and bar mitzvah.

Officials have said from the beginning that a rise in COVID-19 cases could come this fall.

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North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, and Wisconsin are all leading the pack.

But Florida’s numbers have not caused concern.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning against small gatherings, saying they are connecting those gatherings to cases.

The Orange County Health Director said some of the rise in cases has come from family get-togethers, and they are watching those closely.

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With the holidays approaching, health officials are raising the alarm.

Doctors said holding events outside makes a difference along with precautions like hygiene and masks.

And it will be this way at least for a while, at least until a vaccine is available.

Shannon Butler

Shannon Butler,

Shannon joined the Eyewitness News team in 2013.