The Covid 19 Challenge

Today, President Trump, Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx presented predicitons of deaths due to Covid 19 based on computer models.  The models show predicted that there would be 100,000 to 240,000 deaths due to Covid.

The model was based on current data from all the states and from around the world.  As mentioned in an earlier blog, the range of fatality rates varies greatly by state and by country.  New York, New Jersey and Connecticut clearly have the highest fatality rates.  There are also indications that fatalities may be rising quickly in Louisana (New Orleans) and Michigan (Detroit).  Dr. Birx also pointed out that there were many states such as Washington that seemed to have a fatality rate early but have since leveled off.

Dr. Fauci was clear in his belieft that although the model predicts 100,000 or more deaths, that the actual number will be far lower.  This is based on several factors:

  • The values are largely influenced by a few very high locations.  The data from New York, New Jersey, Italy and Spain greatly influenced the model estimates
  • There are many examples such as South Korea, Washington State and China that have shown that the number of deaths can be significantly lower.
  • The model does not take into account increased testing, experimental treatments and improving patient care in its estimates.

There are daily improvements in the distribution of needed medical supplies, increasing hospital beds, increased testing and the manufacture of masks, respirators and medicines.

The model warns of the severe consequences if the disease should get out of control.  The model also predicted that there could be over 2 million deaths if none of the actions being taken (social distancing, hand washing, travel restricitions etc) was not being done.

The model is a clear reminder that the next 30 days are even more important than the last 15.  The disease has run its course in several other countries and there are some states that are almost uneffected.  This means that the 100,000 deaths don’t need to happen.

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