27 March 2024
World covid19 map, Financial Times, 27 March 2020

The US is first country to report more than 100,000 cases of COVID-19 and accounts for approximately 1-in-6 diagnosed and reported cases. Missing from reports about that grim statistic is this: China’s overall case count does not include anyone who retests positive after being released. But more importantly:

China also does not include asymptomatic cases in case counts.

“I have no idea why the authorities choose not to count [asymptomatic] cases in the official case count. I am baffled,” said one of the Wuhan doctors who had a second positive test after recovering [emphasis added].

It is unlikely that many asymptomatic individuals are included in US data due to the limited availability of testing. But China has been testing longer and, reportedly, more widely.

Europe is currently the epicenter of COVID-19 reported cases; the United States is approximately one week behind Europe.

And so goes day 67 since the first case of coronavirus disease was announced in the United States, the third largest country in the world. We work with the data we have, but data weaknesses need to be acknowledged.

The science and data

Preliminary research suggests that the virus has evolved along eight different tracks, with east coast strains being different from the west coast.

“… the tiny differences between the virus strains suggest shelter-in-place orders are working in some areas and that no one strain of the virus is more deadly than another. They also say it does not appear the strains will grow more lethal as they evolve.

On Friday, the New York Times made its county-level database of 85,000 cases public.

No single agency has provided the public with an accurate, up-to-date record of coronavirus cases, tracked to the county level. To fill the gap, The New York Times has launched a round-the-clock effort to tally every known coronavirus case in the United States… it is a product of a fragmented American public health system in which overwhelmed officials at the state or local level have sometimes struggled to report accurately and consistently.


Domestic situation

New York is by far the current epicenter of the disease in the United States. That said, the next place to watch is Louisiana.

Just over 1 percent of the U.S. population lives in Louisiana. But according to the COVID Tracking Project, 7 percent of all COVID-19 deaths, 7 percent of all hospitalizations, and 3 percent of all positive tests have been in the state. New York has suffered about two deaths per 100,000 residents. Louisiana is at 1.8.

Yesterday, Louisiana officials reported that a 17-year-old from Orleans Parish died from COVID-19. Previously, the youngest death had been someone aged 36. In addition,  a 17-year-old in California was infected with coronavirus and died; he was initially counted as an LA County death..

Turning to Georgia:  the outbreak in the southwest corner of the state seems linked to two large funerals. The service for Andrew J. Mitchell was on 29 February, the day the first death was announced in Seattle and the week that the CDC began to allow testing for community spread (rather than only people who had traveled).

The day before, President Trump had called concerns over U.S. preparedness a Democratic hoax.

We have had the first deaths in Alabama, Delaware, Idaho, North Dakota, Nebraska. There are no reported deaths in Hawaii, Rhode Island, West Virginia and Wyoming or American Samoa and the Virgin Islands.

US covid19 map, Financial Times, 27 March 2020



US politics and business response

Trump’s lawyers sent a “cease and desist letter to television broadcast stations across the country to stop airing the ad created by Priorities USA, a Democratic Super Pac.”





Important news and essays


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