With daily COVID-19 case numbers reaching levels not seen in the Bay State before, doctors are warning we could be in for a difficult start to the winter.
"I think that we need to really look for a rough six weeks coming up," said Worcester Medical Director Dr. Michael Hirsh.
Hirsh says between people who are unvaccinated and getting pretty sick and those who are concerned their symptoms may worsen, it doesn't seem like hospitalizations will slow down any time soon.
"The number has been steadily rising. We think that omicron is playing a role," said Hirsh, "that, coupled with what's going on with delta, the emergency rooms are just packed."
"It is still really scary," said Kathy Thornton of Worcester. "It's also depressing this time of year to not, you know, after all we've been through to not now be able to celebrate with family and friends."
We found many people are torn over whether to hunker down and stay socially distant through this COVID wave or just start learning to live with taking measured risks to avoid further isolation.
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"I think it's kind of tough, because it seems like no matter what precautions people are taking, that new variants and things keep popping up, so it's one of those things where a lot of people kind of consider it to be almost inevitable that you're going to bump into it at some point in time," said Loman Rutherford of Worcester.
"I stay torn, I kind of keep my kids and I to ourselves, and try to love from a distance, but I totally understand and I don't judge people that want to get together and gather," said Sarah Brown of Worcester.
Hirsh says the best thing you can still do to stay as safe as possible is get vaccinated and boosted, and then test before going to see loved ones.