PHILADELPHIA - The United States reported 145,000 coronavirus cases Wednesday along with more than 1,500 deaths.
As cases surge once again, nationwide, it's left schools with tough decisions.
On Wednesday, researchers at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia recommended that schools in the Philadelphia area — and in other regions where the virus is spiking — revert to online learning through the holidays to help slow the spread of the virus and prevent hospitals from becoming overrun.
"We need to make a change here because of how quickly things have changed on the ground here in the past few weeks," explained Dr. David Rubin, Direct of the PolicyLab at CHOP.
Since the start of the pandemic, The PolicyLab has become the COVID-19 forecaster of sorts for 800 counties across three states. They help leaders make science-based decisions on their school reopening strategies.
"Everyone has rising infection rates right now from our kids to our adults. And while our kids are not been as sick as adults they are transmitting this virus now and we need to understand that," Dr. Rubin added.
With cases climbing The PolicyLab is recommending schools in the Philadelphia area go online by Monday, and continue to learn virtually until after the holidays.
Dr. Rubin says hospitals are already filling up and it could get catastrophic if we don't hunker down.
"Our wish for people this holiday season is that they are not going to see that tragedy the week after Thanksgiving and the week after Christmas," Dr. Rubin told FOX 29's Chris O'Connell.
Earlier this week, the School District of Philadelphia nixed their plan to bring younger students back to school starting later this month.
Dr. Rubin says that decision could end up saving lives and the pandemic won't last forever.
"There is a clear beginning and end to this and it’s focused on these holidays and it’s focused on what’s going on in our hospitals right now. And when people think about it it’s going to make sense," Dr. Rubin added.
In Montgomery County, health officials will vote Thursday on whether all schools should go virtual.
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