Were You Ready For COVID-19? Not Me!
There is some good news to share, but first, Did you ever think it would get this bad. When I first heard about the coronavirus, I remembered back to 2003 and the SARS epidemic. Do you remember it? SARS is another coronavirus that spread to 29 countries. Its origin is linked to China and it was in the news every day. As the death toll climbed we were warned that it was coming to the United States. But then, out of nowhere, it was over. I heard about a few cases here but no one died and I didn’t know anyone who had it. It just disappeared.
Now we have the coronavirus we call COVID-19. There have been similar warnings and it sounds a lot like SARS. It started in an animal. It was transferred to humans. Humans pass it to other humans. And it’s deadly. I also heard that most people survive it and even that some people don’t even have symptoms. And that’s how the story began for many of us.
We started to think, how bad can this be? These thoughts occurred among individuals and groups. Remember the crowded beaches in Florida? This mindset extended to the government as well. Everyone collectively thought, “We will be fine.” Until we weren’t
Timeline of the Virus
The virus is traced back to Hunanan, China. On December 31, 2019 there were 41 unusual cases of pneumonia. Exactly 2 weeks later the first case appeared in Thailand. Seven days after that, it came to the United States, to Washington State, specifically, which, as of yesterday is in its third consecutive week of declining rates of new cases.
By the time the U.S. banned China travel, on January 31st, it was already too late. Iran was next. Italy was hit a few days later. Then Spain. Germany. And then it was everywhere. If you still don’t think so, look at the Table that I published yesterday with the mathematical estimates of the true numbers of cases in the United States. Then, change your underwear before you come back to this post.
Today, the United States has more cases than anywhere in the world, even China. Depending on where you live, you’re either locked up at home or encouraged to practice social distancing. CVS have tape on the floor guiding us where to stand. Supermarkets have hand sanitizer stands at the entrance. Restaurants and bars are closed. Business is shut down. Everyone is waiting. Wondering. Who will be the first person I know with COVID-19? Will I lose someone I love? For me, these questions are happily unanswered. And I hope they never are.
9 U.S. States Have Declining Trends of COVID-19 Cases
Here’s the good news. I’ve been keep tabs on coronavirus data because I think it’s important to have a sense of where we are in this thing. It’s like when you start watching a YouTube video and you look at how many minutes are left before it’s over. You want a sense of how long this thing is going to last. Right? When will it be over? When will we be able to get back to our lives? That’s why I evaluate the data and I haven’t seen anyone writing about it. So, I write.
Based on the weekly rates of new cases, nine states are trending lower in average number of new cases per week. And if this continues, the pandemic will be over sooner rather than later, for them. All nine States had a smaller rate of new cases in each of the last 3 weeks. This doesn’t mean they won’t have more new cases. In fact, they will. And it may seem like a lot. But the trend has been in all nine of these states that there are fewer and fewer new cases. And that’s good news.
The method I used to evaluate the trends is the same method that Nobel Laureate Michael Levitt, a biophysicist for Stanford University, used to accurately predict the end of China’s infection.
In the table below, you’ll find the rate of new cases over the last 3 weeks. The data that I analyzed comes from the same data used by Johns Hopkins University to populate their Global dashboard of coronavirus cases and it’s cited by almost everyone. Johns Hopkins pulls in data from the World Health Organization and the CDC’s from around the world.
- 23 states have 3 full weeks of reported cases. The remaining 29 states aren’t even in their third week of infection.
- States that have a declining trend:
- North Carolina
- States with an increasing trend
- Rhode Island
- States with inconsistent data (no pattern)
- California – down in week 2 then up in week 3
- Illinois – up in week 2 then down in week 3
- Indiana – down in week 2 then up in week 3
- Kentucky – down in week 2 then up in week 3
- Maryland – up in week 2 then down in week 3
- New Hampshire – up in week 2 and down in week 3
- New Jersey – up in week 2 then down in week 3
- New York – up in week 2 then down in week 3
- Oregon – down in week 2 then up in week 3
- Pennsylvania – down in week 2 then up in week 3
- Texas – up in week 2 then down in week 3
- Wisconsin – up in week 2 then down in week 3
Some of the reasons for inconsistent data may have to to with testing introduction and expansion. It could also be related to the implementation of curfews and lock downs. Or there may be other reasons. For example, on March 16, Pennsylvania ordered all business closed which would explain the reduction in cases. And this week, it significantly expanded testing, which would cause more cases to be reported. The data isn’t perfect, but hopefully it provides a sense of where we are right now.
To use the table, type your full State name in the Search box or use the arrows at the bottom.
Rates of New Coronavirus Cases: United States
|State||Rate of New Cases March 6 - 12||Rate of New Cases|
March 13 - 19
|Rate of New Cases|
March 20 - 27
|Direction of Infection|
|Alabama||1st Case 3/15||0.481||0.110||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Alaska||1st Case 3/15||0.369||0.252||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Arkansas||1st Case 3/11||0.396||0.218||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Connecticut||1st Case 3/7||0.465||0.311||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Delaware||1st Case 3/11||0.334||0.231||Decreasing but not a trend|
|District of Columbia||1st Case 3/8||0.219||0.211||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Hawaii||1st Case 3/7||0.346||0.222||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Idaho||1st Case 3/13||0.409||0.367||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Illinois||0.304||0.372||0.264||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Indiana||0.443||0.244||0.415||Increasing but not a trend|
|Iowa||1st Case 3/9||0.146||0.266||Increasing but not a trend|
|Kansas||1st Case 3/8||0.315||0.247||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Kentucky||0.389 ||0.149||0.304||Increasing but not a trend|
|Louisiana||1st Case 3/9||0.407||0.207||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Maine||1st Case 3/13||0.759||0.170||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Maryland||0.219 ||0.290||0.266||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Massachusetts||1st Case 3/7||0.150||0.342||Increasing but not a trend|
|Michigan||1st Case 3/11||0.544||0.309||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Mississippi||1st Case 3/12||0.749||0.327||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Missouri||1st Case 3/8||0.479||0.436||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Montana||1st Case 3/11||0.409||0.328||Decreasing but not a trend|
|New Hampshire||0.170||0.329||0.200||Decreasing but not a trend|
|New Jersey||0.465||0.589||0.388||Decreasing but not a trend|
|New Mexico||1st Case 3/11||0.196||0.179||Decreasing but not a trend|
|North Dakota||1st Case 3/12||0.511||0.200||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Ohio||1st Case 3/10||0.372||0.309||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Oklahoma||1st Case 3/7||0.555||0.309||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Oregon||0.346||0.166||0.203||Increasing but not a trend|
|Pennsylvania||0.409||0.259||0.340||Increasing but not a trend|
|South Carolina||1st Case 3/7||0.299||0.232||Decreasing but not a trend|
|South Dakota||1st Case 3/11||0.047||0.225||Increasing but not a trend|
|Vermont||1st Case 3/8||0.409||0.302||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Virginia||1st Case 3/8||0.186||0.258||Increasing but not a trend|
|West Virginia||No Cases||1st Case 3/17||0.406||Not enough data|
|Wisconsin||0.346||0.355||0.239||Decreasing but not a trend|
|Wyoming||1st Case 3/12||0.511||0.205||Decreasing but not a trend|
I mentioned yesterday that the number of reported cases vastly under-represents the true number of cases. In that article I published a Table of True Cases in each state. I used the calculation methods of Thomas Pueyo, a Stanford University graduate with two master’s degrees. He has written extensively on the coronovirus and here’s an article you should read. It’s a lot of information but worth the time. More to come…