Noticing more people wearing COVID-19 masks again? Here's why

NOW: Noticing more people wearing COVID-19 masks again? Here’s why

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Some health experts say it’s time to dust off those N95 masks because a new COVID-19 variant has been detected in the U.S., and more people are starting to test positive for the virus again. 

So, if you've been seeing more people wearing masks recently, you're not alone. 

"People have been asking for more masks, which is good," said Dr. Hashim Zaibak, founder of Hayat Pharmacy. "That means if they start having symptoms or if they test positive, they're doing the right thing."

Dr. Zaibak said in the last couple of months, he's seen at least one or two people test positive every day, but he's not alarmed.

"Is it back to where it was? Absolutely not," he said. "We should not be panicking; we should not be worried."

The principal investigator for COVID-19 clinical trials, Dr. William Hartman at UW Health, told CBS 58 News there has been an uptick in COVID cases nationwide.

"The number of hospitalizations nationwide due to COVID-19, last week again rose another 20%," said Dr. Hartman.

And it could continue to trend upwards.

"I would anticipate as schools open up and kids are suddenly back together under one roof, and doing many more activities together, that we will see a spike in cases in the younger kids," he added.

Doctors urge if you have symptoms, take a test. An at-home test kit typically retails at $24. 

Otherwise, at Hayat Pharmacy, an antigen test costs $19.99 with results in 15 minutes.

In addition, a PCR test -- known to be a bit more accurate -- costs $99 and you may get results within an hour.

Some health insurance companies cover COVID-19 testing, but others don't.

So, where are we in terms of administering COVID-19 vaccines and boosters? Dr. Zaibak said the guidelines are a bit confusing and everybody is different.

"Don't try to Google it if you're not a health care provider, it's not easy," he said. "If you are 70 years old and you are immunocompromised, then you qualify for more boosters than a 20-year-old person who is completely healthy."  

Talk to your doctor before getting your next booster. A new shot is expected to come out as early as September and it protects against the most recent coronavirus variants.

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