MILWAUKEE — It may seem hard to believe, but this week, Wisconsin will mark the start of a third year dealing with COVID-19, and only time will tell whether the pandemic is still a factor by the end of its third year.

"I don't think anyone back in January of 2020 would have predicted that two years later, we'd still be talking about this," said Dr. Jeff Pothof, Chief Quality Officer at UW Health. "And not just talking about this but you know, COVID's causing more problems for us now than it was in January of 2020 — I think we were thinking a year at the most and boy were we wrong."

While Wisconsin has seen the rate of daily COVID cases drop off over the past couple of weeks in the wake of the omicron spike, Dr. Pothof said the curves tied to hospitalizations and deaths across the Badger State likely won't catch up until the middle of February.

"I'd imagine hopefully within a couple of weeks," Dr. Pothof added. "We've seen that at different points in this pandemic. The predictable patterns is you see an increase in the percent positive, that means COVID is in your community. Then, within a week, you see increased cases hitting the hospitals and hospitalizations going up, and then after that, a couple of weeks later, you start to see the increase in deaths."

You can watch the entire interview with Dr. Pothof and Jason Fechner above.