The Rise of Three New Global Spread Centers

The global data has two things I’d like to point out. First, the case fatality rate seems to be stabilizing once again after a couple of weeks of steady climb. It will be interesting to see where it lands eventually, but I think 2.5-3.0% seems like a reasonable guess on my part.

Second, it’s pretty clear that we have a climbing incidence again. I will attribute this to China having done significant measures to control spread as well. as the number of cases climbing in Iran, Italy, and South Korea.

Also, remember not to compare these graphs directly to each other. The scales on them are different, although I’ve used the same time x-axis on all of them to help normalize a sense of what individual countries are contributing to the whole global case count.

An interesting feature in both the Iran and Italian data is the 100% fatality spike at the beginning of both outbreaks. This tells me that it is likely that they first identified cases in those countries either as the victims were either close to death or after their deaths. The other possibility is that they hadn’t reported cases initially.

It is still my feeling that Italy and South Korea will be better models of how things might unfold in the US, although both have flaws. South Korea has the benefit of the more acceptance of the common good over the individual as well as the impact of more common mask use by the public, which is a very good way to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets from those who are sick.

Italy is a bit more like our culture in the US, but they clearly made some mistakes about failing to handle their first cases correctly in a health care setting.

Disclaimer: This commentary is my own interpretation and does not represent the analysis by the government or my employer. The data is from the Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering.

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