Weekly report on COVID-19
“Forget the politics. Look at the data.”
Dr. Anthony Fauci, June 24, 2020
This weekly report shows COVID-19 deaths and cases by week since March 2, 2020. The U.S. handling of COVID-19 is compared with other countries. The following charts show data from an assortment of countries notable for their different responses to the pandemic.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on January 30, 2020. Had the Trump administration not fired the U.S. Pandemic Response Team, a mitigation plan would have been put into place several weeks earlier, thus saving many lives.
- The global health emergency was confirmed by the large number of cases and deaths in Italy in early March. See the Italy (IT) curves during Week 1 in the above charts. Even with this, the Trump administration didn't act to put an effective mitigation plan in place.
- Social distancing and quarantine in the U.S. wasn't fully in place until early April—Week 4 in the charts. How many lives could the Trump administration have saved if they put a mitigation plan in place three or four weeks earlier?
- Germany started to have cases about one week earlier than the U.S. but put mitigation procedures in place more quickly. They have about one-third the number of deaths per capita. This suggests that two-thirds of U.S. deaths may have been caused by the Trump administration's inaction. If so, that's about 81,000 people who have died needlessly so far.
- Given that we see an increase in cases in the U.S. during Week 14, watch for an increase in deaths in Week 16 or earlier.
- It's clear from the charts that the UK and Brazil are not handling COVID-19 well. However, the emphasis on Brazil in the press ignores the worse per capita problem in South America—Chile. See the charts for South America below.
There's interest in the data for the Nordic countries and other countries that surround the Baltic Sea, given that Sweden has taken the approach that they wouldn't implement mitigation efforts and let the population build herd immunity. The charts show that the price for building herd immunity in the absence of a vaccine is high. This is something for anti-vaxers to consider.
The emphasis being placed on Brazil's high number or cases and deaths, compared to other North American and European countries, hides what is going on in South America. Chile is leading South America—by a lot. Brazil's population (212 million) is more than ten times greater than Chile (19 million), so Chile's smaller number of death's and cases still puts it the highest in terms of per capita.
Belgium and Spain were the leaders in deaths and cases early on but have gone to virtully zero after mitigation. Portugal is slowly creeping upwards again.
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