What could the next two months of the pandemic look like?

BOSTON — Allen Zeinswood is desperately trying to keep his business open.

Zeinswood launched his Mediterranean restaurant Stardust in West Roxbury a year and a half ago. He estimates the pandemic has cost him 80% of his business.

“What can we do from this point? If they say I have to close, I have to close,” Zeinswood said.

But while COVD-19 in Massachusetts is on the rise, local health experts believe it’s unlikely Governor Baker will order another statewide shutdown like the one earlier this year.

“We should not have to shut down everything all at once again. We should be able to target the things that are actually contributing to the pandemic,” said Dr. Shira Doron, an epidemiologist and infectious disease expert at Tufts Medical Center.

For the second consecutive day, Massachusetts saw more than 2,000 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state.

The Dept. of Public Health reported Wednesday 2,495 new cases of the virus, a more than 400-case increase from Tuesday’s daily total.

But Doron said we know so much more about the virus than we did in March and April.

“We didn’t even know what the extent of it was, we didn’t even know where it was," said Doron. "We couldn’t test for it, we didn’t have the testing capacity.”

What we now know is that, according to DPH, the largest source of COVID-19 clusters is from households, where people don’t have to follow mask or social distancing guidelines.

“What I don’t see [Gov. Baker] doing is just reversing course,” Doron said. “What I see him doing is using the evidence to target restrictions to the places where the virus is actually spreading.”

Dr. Matt Fox, an epidemiology professor at Boston University, expects the number of cases to continue to rise in Massachusetts.

“My expectation is that over the next few months, things are going to get worse," said Fox.

Fox said treatment for the virus has improved, so fewer people are dying or having to go to the hospital.

“The mortality has come down so much on this disease, partly because we’ve gotten better at treating it, and partly because those who are getting infected are much younger,” Fox said.

Fox said the cold weather is going to force more people to stay inside, which could also impact the transmission of the virus.

“My hope is people will take precautions during the holidays, but I still think you can expect to see an increase,” Fox said.

For now, Allen Zeinswood is still open for business, desperately waiting on a vaccine.

“I cannot control anything right now…This has been going on for eight months. It is really hard. It is really hard,” Zeinswood said.

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