From: PDX (and now) London, UK
There is much in that thread that I would agree with.
But there is a massive leap from the current data to "dozens of NYCs around the country"
If you look at the NY numbers for late March/early April (referring to the 7 day averages). On 22/03 cases were at 2164. A week later they were at 6493 - cases had almost exactly tripled within a week. Over the same period of time deaths went from 28 to 216 - within a week they had gone up by c.7X (put another way deaths had doubled c. 3 times within a week).
Another way to look at it is the CFR. If we use a 7 day window, those 6493 cases on 29/03 translated to 633 deaths on 05/04 - a CFR of c.10%. If by comparison we look at the numbers in Georgia - cases seem to have started spiking on around 13/06 from a 'base' of 984. Looking at the graph for deaths there seems to be a corresponding up-tick developing around 25/06 at around 16 deaths. That would equate to a CFR of 1.5%.
A final way to look at it would be daily deaths/100k population. At the peak in NY this was at about 4.75. At the moment Florida is at about 0.2. So even if deaths 'followed' cases and doubled every week it would take about 4.5 weeks of consistent increase at that pace before getting to the equivalent of NY. California/Georgia/Texas are a little lower at 0.15/0.15/0.13 respectively. Arizona is worse off at about 0.5 (so just over 3 weeks worth of weekly doubling to reach an equivalent of NY).
I think the much bigger concern from a US perspective is what happens in October/November. I think that period will be difficult everywhere but the US will be in a uniquely difficult position as the Covid-19 'issue' has become much more politicised than it has elsewhere - a problem that could become even more acute if the situation starts getting more ugly a month or two out from national elections.
Testing was only just starting to see the tip of the iceberg in NY in late March and early April. As we know now the actual number of tested cases is nowhere near the actual cases.
Testing now is much more prevalent. We're seeing the actual growth more clearly, not the awareness of an already out of control outbreak like in NY. The CFR for NY during this time is nowhere near accurate.
The issue now is that unlike NY during that time, which was locked down fro March 22, there are no measures in place to check this rise in cases. The existing knowledge and messaging will help, but with more and more awareness that this is transmitting through aerosols and lingers in indoor environments, if masks aren't universal and a portion of the population continues risky behaviours socially, the increases will continue.
You mention that October and November may be even more difficult. What will happen between now and then though? If cases are rising, more of this is around, people are going about daily activities, and hospitals become overwhelmed, late summer will not be good.
This is a piece from the Guardian saying (with combined expert knowledge to back it up) what needs to happen now to battle this recent surge in case numbers.
From Tom Frieden, former director of the CDC:
In the US today, the virus has the upper hand. We can expect weeks, even months, of increases if we don’t do much better. The fact is we are creating an enormous viral reservoir that will take a very long time to recede.
One of the most serious problems is the lack of a concerted federal response. You see that in the lack of consistent messaging, the failure to tackle supply issues from tests to protective equipment, the absence of uniform standards on what states should monitor and report publicly.
In short, there is no clear national strategy and no plan for controlling this virus.
We know what we need to do. First, reduce the risk of spread by applying the three Ws: wear a mask, wash your hands and watch your distance. Then box the virus in through strategic testing, effective isolation, and rapid contact tracing and supportive quarantine.
Having done those things, we need to hold ourselves accountable by tracking how quickly tests are reported, patients isolated, and contacts traced. Singapore, New Zealand, South Korea are all tracking those indicators. We are not.
< Message edited by obvert -- 7/7/2020 8:57:27 PM >
"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm." - Winston Churchill