LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Just as health experts are expressing optimism about the potential of the vaccine for pharmaceutical company Pfizer to be more than 90% effective, the United States is seeing a rise in new coronavirus cases that some say amount to a second wave.
Long and winding lines at Dodger Stadium and other coronavirus testing sites showcase the increased symptoms and concern from locals.
In L.A. County on Saturday, officials reported 3,780 new coronavirus cases, which they said is the highest number of new cases since the summer surge in July.
There were 20 additional deaths and 966 hospitalizations in L.A. County as well, adding up to the countywide totals of 336,549 coronavirus cases and 7,266 fatalities.
Read More On CBS News: Pfizer Says Trials Show Its Coronavirus Vaccine Is “More Than 90% Effective”
In Orange County, coronavirus cases are also on the rise, pushing the county close to moving back into a more restrictive tier.
As these cases nationwide continue to increase, officials are optimistic but say it’s no reason to be lax on coronavirus guidelines.
“I also have hope that this vaccine will work,” said Dr. Ronald Tang.
Tang said vaccines in a trial could look much different when utilized out in the world, so that’s where he’s waiting to learn more about Pfizer’s development.
“Any type of trial is a very controlled environment… a lot of these patients are completely healthy, they don’t have diabetes, they don’t have immunocompromised states, they’re not overweight,” Tang said. “Will you need two or three, two or three vaccines, months apart?”
Even if the Pfizer vaccine is the answer to the pandemic, Tang said vaccines will likely first get distributed to health care workers and first responders at the end of this year, and then to the elderly and immunocompromised in early 2021.
Tang is predicting that if everything goes as expected, a vaccine might be available to the general population by Spring 2021.
“For people who think I’m gonna get the vaccine in January and I’ll be able to enjoy my summer and travel in 6 months, I wouldn’t be that comfortable yet,” said Tang.
You can read more about the vaccine candidate in Pfizer’s news release here.