MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As COVID-19 cases surge across Florida, there’s growing concern from experts that it’s younger people catching the disease.
“We are seeing a younger population coming down with the disease, testing positive and entering the hospital,” said Dr. Aileen Marty, an infectious disease specialist at Florida International University. “Our median age in Miami-Dade is 48. Age 48. We’re not 60 or 65. It’s 48. That has to be alarming, that has to get people’s attention.”READ MORE: CBS4 Exclusive: Former Broward Sheriff Scott Israel Calls Scot Peterson's Press Conference On His Deposition 'Fictional'
Discouraging words from Dr. Marty as it appears there’s a spread in a younger demographic.
She also finds the numbers discouraging.
“They are going the wrong way. Absolutely going the wrong way and it is very real,” she said.
Marty says we have lost impetus in the battle with coronavirus.READ MORE: Miami Beach City Commission Unanimously Approves Dedicating Baseball Field After Surfside Condo Collapse Victim Manny LaFont
“We had gotten beyond flattening the curve. We had actually gotten on the down side of the curve and that was wonderful,” she said. “But a lot of events in the last couple of weeks and a lot of people forgetting how serious, dangerous this virus is or just tired of it and are not doing the things we need to do to keep us from going up. Now going backwards, back up.”
Marty is concerned about hospitalizations and the jump in percent of those tested showing positive.
“The more important part of the story is the percent of positive and the increase in hospitalizations. It has nothing to do with the increase in testing. That’s people getting sick,” she said.
A projection model from scientists at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania suggests that Florida could be the next epicenter in the coronavirus pandemic.
Dr. Marty is watching the numbers closely.MORE NEWS: Parkland Parent Max Schachter Donates $25,000 To Marjory Stoneman Douglas Orchestra To ‘Keep Alex's Memory Alive’
“We have gone up. We started to come down because we hammered it down with all these public health measures. And just at the wrong moment when we should’ve kept going down we’re to swing back up,” she said. “We can avoid this without a lock down but only if we all cooperate.”