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UCF study shows coronavirus pandemic in Florida may peak next month

Florida

ORLANDO, Fla. (WESH) – A new study from the University of Central Florida finds that coronavirus cases in Florida may peak next month.

Starting early next month, UCF’s departments of Statistics and Data Science and Computer Science project the state’s curve will begin to bend in a better direction with fewer cases pushing the total up.

Dr. Shunpu Zhang told WESH 2 News the projections, if they hold true, would mean new case numbers will decrease slowly toward the end of this year, then fall off more substantially.

“By December or January 2021, that’s the time probably we’re going to see a faster drop,” Zhang said.

The recipe for the projections includes current data and standard epidemiology practices mixed with new artificial intelligence technology.

UCF Ph.D. student Dong Dong Wang said the research has led to a confident prediction but it’s still bound by only the data collected so far. That means the impact of schools reopening or tourists visiting in the coming weeks or months don’t factor into the findings.

Still, he said he expects the projections to hold, or possibly be bolstered by other changes.

“I think the system will keep this stable trend. if we did soemthing to change this system, like a vaccination, then probably this decreasing trend will be faster and the situation will be better,” Wang said.

“Our prediction is based on the data, not just a hope, but it’s from the prediction we see hope,” Zhang said.

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