CDC's Latest Estimated COVID-19 Infection Fatality Ratio: 0.65%

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

"The July 10 update is based on data received by CDC through June 29, 2020″; the 0.65% is the probability of dying once infected. As always, take these with a grain of salt. Among other things,

Many uncertainties remain. For example, current estimates of Infection Fatality Ratios do not account for time-varying changes in hospital capacity (e.g., in bed capacity, ventilator capacity, or workforce capacity) or for differences in rates of underlying health conditions that may contribute to a higher frequency of severe illness in congregate and community settings.  A nursing home, for example, may have a high incidence of infection (due to close contacts among many individuals) and severe disease (due to a high rate of underlying conditions) that does not reflect the frequency or severity of disease in the broader population of older adults.

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  1. The number you need to find is the fatality rate once ICU beds or other hospital facilities are beyond capacity. Because that is where we are headed. In some places we are there already.

    1. NYC never got “beyond capacity”, why will other places?

      Deaths are decreasing as a % because we got better at treatment. Fewer ventilators, no Andrew Cuomos deciding things.

      1. Or Phailing Phil Murphy’s….that man is responsible for many, many deaths with his idiotric decision to house KungFlu patients in nursing homes. May he reap what he has sown, one thousand-fold.

        1. Yes, and Trump’s dismissal of the Trump virus and his modeling of anti-mask behavior, and his refusal to lead on the issue cost 10,000, or 50,000, or 100,000 lives. What’s your point? (I guess: That blame can be spread around and that there are a lot of politicians with blood on their hands.)

          1. Have you had it? Trump shut down travel from a China and Pelosi and Hoyer ran to introduce the No Ban Act in order to reverse him.

            Trump had nothing to do with the creation of the virus and states control the primary responses to disease, as they have police powers.

            Stop making me defend Trump!

            1. Yes he said he shut down travel from China, but that was just talk like all his pronouncements. Even if he really would have wanted that to happen, he didn’t do the ground work in the preceding 3 years necessary to control the bureaucracy required to implement the decision. So basically he was negligent again.

            2. Trump did not shut down all travel from China. A lot of international flights have been cancelled, including flights from China to the United States, but you’ve been able to book a flight from China to the United States throughout the pandemic. There was a period of time when all the American carriers terminated service between the United States and China, due to pressure from the flight attendant’s union combined with uncertain demand, but carriers based outside of the United States did not follow suit. At the moment, direct flights from Shanghai to San Francisco seem to have disappeared, but you can still book a flight if you don’t might a 1 hour 45 minute layover in Seoul, South Korea.

              The No Ban Act was about reversing the “Muslim ban.” I don’t think that there is anything in the act that would prohibit a President from banning all travel from China to the United States in order to stop the spread of a virus.

              1. No, he didn’t stop ALL travel from China, he permitted citizens to return.

                1. What, you don’t think Trump should have the power to arbitrarily exile Americans because there exists a virus with a few hundred cases worldwide?

                  It’s almost as if that’s common sense!

            3. Have you had it? Trump shut down travel from a China and Pelosi and Hoyer ran to introduce the No Ban Act in order to reverse him.

              1) Trump did not shut down travel from China.
              2) The No Ban Act was not introduced by Pelosi and Hoyer.
              3) The No Ban Act, which of course was not passed and could not be passed without Republican support since the GOP controls the Senate, was introduced nine months before Trump’s half-assed decision relating to Chinese travel.

            1. Did you read the article? Do you remember the history? They were trying to stop a run on PPE that it was anticipated would be needed in hospitals. We are still short of masks for medical professionals.

              Also, at the time, they anticipated it might make people more reckless rather than follow the other guidelines.

              Then the scientists and doctors admitted they made a mistake on the second point and mitigated the first by recommending non-medical grade masks for people who aren’t first responders.

              A sample from the article:

              Adalja applauded the CDC’s recommendation on face masks….They “end up creating a false sense of security and most people don’t wear them appropriately,” he said….

              Panic-driven demand for face masks, Adalja said, is particularly worrisome because it could have “a negative supply shock” effect on hospital personnel who need these masks more than the general public.

              Partly, they were trying to protect the supply. Partly, they followed the data which showed they were wrong.

              It was a mistake. Definitely not the ideal. But admitting and learning from one’s mistake, that is to be applauded. I mean, they could be like Trump and continue to make the same false claims over and over and over again despite those lies killing people.

              Being willing to admit error is a virtue, not a vice, Armchair. Oh….Armchair…..right.

              1. It’s not an “error” however they want to justify it. It was not a simple “mistake”. They (The government and scientists) lied. They were full aware that masks limited the transmission rate, and they lied to the American public about it.

                Why did they lie? To preserve the supply for medical workers, a reason you may agree with. (BTW, this is how they know it helped reduce the transmission rate, because they wanted to preserve it for the medical workers). It was a good intention. But it doesn’t change the fact that the government and scientists lied about it.

                Again, this really needs to be emphasized. The government scientists deliberately lied to the American people, for a short term gain. And that short term gain worked. But in the long term, it hurts trust in the government and scientists. Because if the government lies once, for a reason they think is good, maybe they’ll do it again, for a reason they think it good. That “trust” is lost.

                1. A Trump fan who claims to be bothered by lies is a person overdue for replacement by better Americans.

                2. Nobody lied. President Trump’s SG thought in the early days of the epidemic that masks were not as effective since the disease wasn’t running through the general public yet, and the risk of a run was greater than the mitigating effects of wearing them in public. That’s not an error, it’s just math. If there is a shortage of masks and the disease isn’t running rampant throughout the public, masks are going to be more effective in places where we know the disease is, namely hospitals. And you’d want to prioritize getting masks to people in places where it spreads, to prevent further spreading.

                  1. It was a lie. You keep putting conditions and comparisons in place. ie “not as effective.” But for many of those statements, there were no conditions or comparisons. It was simply “NOT effective”.

                    Here’s the Tweet.

                    ““STOP BUYING MASKS!” “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus,”

                    No conditions, no hedging, no “not as”. Simply NOT (capitalized for emphasis) effective.

                    That was a direct lie.

                    1. A lie is something one knows to be untrue when one says them. Like the things you post. This was a lack of information about this virus.

                    2. “No conditions, no hedging[.]”

                      Say, your quote ends in a comma, why is that? It feels like you left off the second half of the tweet, for some reason.

                    3. David,
                      Come back when you’ve finished your next episode of Ally McBeal and can pretend you’re a pretend lawyer.

                      NToJ,

                      The statement is clear. That’s the lie.

                  2. I replied to Armchair above without reading this other threads…obviously, he wasn’t smart enough to read and comprehend the entire sentence, even when NToJ patiently explains it to him.

                    That healthcare professionals needed the masks is about as explicit as you can get that they do help stop transmission. Healthcare professionals aren’t a different species, ergo masks would work for you too. The policy decision was made clear to any semi-intelligent listener.

                    1. If that’s the case, then why did the SG expressly write

                      ““STOP BUYING MASKS!” “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus”

                    2. Armchair,

                      f that’s the case, then why did the SG expressly write

                      ““STOP BUYING MASKS!”

                      Because, as they said, as I already said, they wanted to save the medical masks for medical professionals. You can agree or disagree about prioritizing the people needed to treat the condition, to include because they would be more likely to get and spread the disease than anyone in the general population at that point, but there is nothing dishonest with him asking people to stop buying masks.

                      “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus”

                      As NToJ has pointed out, you are misleadingly truncating the SG’s tweet. He actually said:

                      “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can’t get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!”

                      You were corrected on this multiple times. The full quote makes clear that the “effectiveness” he is talking about is not that masks don’t do anything when humans wear them. If they didn’t do anything, medical professionals wouldn’t need them.

                      That you keep using a truncated quote suggests either that you are not bright or you are dishonest.

            2. Yeah, AL, experts are sometimes wrong. But they then correct themselves.

              Better than what I’ve seen you do.

              1. experts are sometimes wrong. But they then correct themselves.

                Or, as NOVA Lawyer just walked through above, they flatly lied to us for what they considered to be our own good.

                But NOW they’re telling us the truth — pinky promise!

                1. Stupid people resent expertise, disdain science, reject reason, and register Republican.

                2. Life of Brian,

                  That’s an uncharitable reading of history and my comment. But, yes, they made a judgment regarding whether the net benefit was greater encouraging ordinary people to wear masks or to downplay masks and instead to encourage ordinary people to social distance, practice good hygiene, etc.. There were already random citizens hoarding N95 masks, so that was a legitimate concern (and we are still short on medical masks). And, importantly, they didn’t say masks don’t work. Fauci, for instance, said they don’t provide “perfect protection” (which to any semi-intelligent person strongly implies they do provide some protection) and he expressed concern encouraging mask use would give people a false sense of security.

                  You don’t say what your metric is, Life of Brian, other than to disbelieve everyone and lean into your own confirmation bias.

                  Nobody says follow the CDC’s recommendations unquestioningly. Nobody says that the CDC doesn’t make mistakes. The people whose pinky promise you really shouldn’t believe are the people who never admit a mistake and who stick with a lie long after it has become obvious they are lying.

                  But we do have to have a common game plan. Some things don’t work if everyone chooses their own way. This is one reason we are in the situation we are in now. People did not follow the health experts, but went to covid parties, weddings, etc., anyway. That other countries leaders and citizens were better able to understand and react to a pandemic says something about the United States. And not anything good.

                  People like Dr. Fauci have dedicated their lives to this stuff. It doesn’t make them infallible, but it does make them worth listening to. And much more than people just pulling random thoughts out of their ass.

                  1. It was not a judgement. It was a lie. The CDC was well aware masks would reduce the transmission rate, and decided to lie to the American People about it, in order to preserve the supply for medical workers.

                    So next time, when you tell us “trust scientists, they’re experts”, we have to ask…”Should we? Really? Or are they lying to us again?”. That damage to the reputation can’t be undone.

                    1. More than anything, that is what sticks in my craw. The casual lying that goes on from DC. The team label (R, D) is irrelevant. They all lie to advance their agenda. I was not particularly trusting of the federal or state government before; now, I completely distrust them. As for the media in general, I utterly despise them.

                    2. I was telling someone that, when this is all said and done, I think one of the biggest lessons to be learned is that scientists cannot lie to the public, even if for a noble cause.

                      Had the CDC come out and said that N95 masks were needed for healthcare workers, but that everyone should be wearing cloth masks, we’d likely have much greater usage rates and possibly saved thousands of lives (and lots of economic pain). Giving a mixed message fed right into the distrust of expertise and facilitated this turning into a political fight.

                    3. What makes you think it’s a lie, other than your ipse dixit that the CDC totally knew.

                    4. Stop saying “It was a lie” and point us to the actual thing you think was a lie.

                    5. “Stop saying it was a lie”.

                      Why? Because it was.

                      “point us”

                      I already did. Here it is again.

                      ” “STOP BUYING MASKS!” “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus,”

                      That is a direct lie. No conditions, no hedging, no “not as effective” no “limited utility”.. Simply “NOT effective”.

                    6. I have not see a quote where Fauci lied about masks. If you have one, quote it.

                      They made a judgment. They did not fully explain the judgment, they left out important details. I agree that not just trusting Americans with the real reason for the recommendation has damaged their credibility and was a mistake. But you keep talking about “us”, surely you were smart enough to understand “When you’re in the middle of an outbreak, wearing a mask might make people feel a little bit better and it might even block a droplet, but it’s not providing the perfect protection that people think that it is.” means masks do, in fact, provide some protection and, if you want to maximize your personal protection, you should wear a mask AND practice social distancing, etc.

                      You are that smart, right? If so, I don’t get this: I feel so betrayed. Yes, people dumber than the two of us didn’t understand what was going on, but it wasn’t exactly a secret. (Plus, you and I knew masks were working in China, South Korea, and Singapore, among other places. Right? Didn’t you know that?)

                      In short, misleading the public is pretty much always a bad idea in the long-term, even if intended for the public’s benefit in the short-term. But, at least in this case, you and I could add 2 + 2 and understood the PPE situation, the true message: Please let medical workers have the masks, don’t hoard N95s.

                  2. “But, yes, they made a judgment”

                    And then, based on it, lied.

                    They didn’t tell people, “Masks help, but, for God’s sake, save them for the doctors, you really, really need the doctors to not get sick!”

                    They told people: “Don’t wear masks, they won’t help.”

                    They flat out lied, and expected people to continue to believe them when the lie was exposed.

                    1. Where did they say that?

                    2. In mid-February, Fauci told USA Today: “People start saying, ‘Should I start wearing a mask?’ Now, in the United States, there is absolutely no reason whatsoever to wear a mask.”

                      On February 29th, Facui tweeted: “Seriously people- STOP BUYING MASKS! They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can’t get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!”

                      In early March, Fauci told 60 Minutes: “There’s no reason for Americans to be walking around with a mask.”

                      On June 17th, Fauci gave an interview in which he said: “We were concerned the public health community, and many people were saying this, were concerned that it was at a time when personal protective equipment, including the N95 masks and the surgical masks, were in very short supply. We wanted to make sure the people, namely, the healthcare workers, who were brave enough to put themselves in harm’s way to take care of people who you know were infected with coronavirus, and the danger of them getting infected. We did not want them to be without the equipment they needed.”

                      That’s Fauci publicly claiming masks don’t work and are not necessary early on, then admitting he lied months later.
                      The ironic part is that *cloth* masks actually aren’t helpful, and can even be harmful, which he said early on. But now he’s pushing their use…

                    3. @Toranth,

                      “That’s Fauci publicly claiming masks don’t work and are not necessary early on, then admitting he lied months later.”

                      That’s an intentionally uncharitable reading of what he said. On February 29th, there were 70 people in the United States with confirmed COVID cases, and 1 death. In the very same tweet you condemn him for, he acknowledges that it prevents transmission (what do you think “puts them and our communities at risk” means?). The point was that it doesn’t make sense to prioritize stopping the spread of 70 people if it means eliminating access to masks for the subset of the population (medical providers) who actually interact with people who had COVID.

                    4. NTOJ,

                      The numbers don’t matter. The fact that Fauci lied matters. The fact is masks are effective at reducing the spread of the disease. Fauci knew this. And he lied.

                    5. AL, NToJ demonstrates that Fauci didn’t lie.

                      You, luckily, don’t seem to read well enough to be lying on purpose.

                    6. @Armchair,

                      “The numbers don’t matter. The fact that Fauci lied matters.”

                      What did Fauci lie about? The tweet you keep mentioning was the President’s SG, not Fauci.

                  3. NOVA Lawyer – I have also heard there was a measure of chauvinism towards Asia and masks that was occluding the science.

                    1. I don’t doubt it. Humans, apparently, are designed to be chauvinistic towards others of any type.

          2. Well, we have a difference of opinion here. Phailing Phil, and his little Harpy Heath Commissioner made the conscious policy decision to deliberately house KungFlu patients in nursing homes. That was clearly in contravention of the data and the science known at the time from Italy and Spain. The CDC made no such recommendation.

            In a just world, Phailing Phil and his little Harpy Health Commissioner will personally experience the pain and loss in their own families. And then be denied the decency of a funeral to attend.

      2. NYC never got “beyond capacity”, why will other places?

        Because literally everywhere in the US has shittier healthcare than New York city?

        1. “literally everywhere” in the US? No.

        2. re: “everywhere in the US has shittier healthcare than New York city”
          So, basically… nowhere.

        3. “Because literally everywhere in the US has shittier healthcare than New York city?”

          I don’t know what metric you are using, but number of ICU beds per capita seems apropos, and NYC (and NY in general) have lower than the median number of ICU beds.

      3. That’s one factor. There are others, like the declining average age of the infected (younger people die from the disease far less often), and the tendency for viral diseases to evolve to be less deadly over the course of a pandemic.

        Put bluntly, the people most vulnerable to catching the disease and having a severe outcome already have, and those that survived have antibodies that make it less likely they will die from it in the future. It’s not necessarily impossible to catch again, but it would take a bigger dose of virions and would be much less severe.

        Those that did die from the disease, the ones who quite evidently were the most vulnerable, are certainly not going to die from it again in the future. That’s not to make light of the loss… but the normal progression of a selectively lethal virus is that it kills the most vulnerable first, leaving an increasingly stronger (less likely to die from it) pool of potential victims as it progresses.

        1. and the tendency for viral diseases to evolve to be less deadly over the course of a pandemic.

          The imaginary tendency for viral diseases to evolve to be less deadly over the course of a pandemic.

    2. re: “In some places we are there already.”

      Citation please. I am aware of no hospital facilities that are even close to capacity.

      The only exception during the entirety of the coronavirus “crisis” was northern Italy – but their healthcare infrastructure is so undermaintained that they have capacity problems even in just a bad influenza season.

      1. I understand some hospitals are rather crowded at the moment, but it’s not due to Covid-19 patients. It’s due to all the postponed ‘elective’ surgery having to be taken care of on an emergency basis.

        The assumption that we were going to see a huge flood of Covid-19 hospitalizations drove the hospitals to de-schedule a lot of procedures like heart and cancer treatment, that are only ‘elective’ in the sense that the patient isn’t going to drop dead on the spot if you don’t do them immediately. “Just” have a tremendously elevated chance of dying.

        But there’s a push to conflate this with hospitals being overloaded with Covid patients, just like there’s an effort to make people think positive tests are people dying. There are a lot of interests out there that want panic.

        1. there’s an effort to make people think positive tests are people dying. There are a lot of interests out there that want panic.

          Anything that doesn’t suit Brett is the product of a giant conspiracy. Always.

          1. He at least presents questions and answers, even if no citations.

            You? Just personal attacks. Ad hominem? You could answer yes or no on whether I spelled it right and redeem yourself with an actual answer.

          2. He’s not wrong, though. The media and CDC have been quite obviously trying to terrorize people from the start. Just the other day, when Fauci was asked why the CDC was getting so worked up about an increase in positive test results even though the new deaths per day is a third of what it was at the peak, he responded that it was a false narrative.

            Narrative… there’s that word again. It’s not a science word! It’s a politics word, and in leftist politics, it refers to what they consider a larger “truth” that they must portray with propaganda, a “truth” that transcends actual facts and reality.

            When Dan Rather decided to go forward with unverified documents that made Bush 43 look bad, he represented them as validated even though they were not, knowingly and intentionally. He did this because the text of the fraudulent documents fit the narrative (that Bush was a big poopy head), so they were “true” even if they were fake.

            Conversely, stories about police killing people like Tony Timpa in the same manner as George Floyd were not picked up by the national news because the narrative is that the police murder _black_ people, and Timpa was white.

            Fauci went on to say that talking about the plummeting death rate and not just hyping up the increased number of positive tests would make people think it was okay to relax a little. In other words, they’d behave like free people and decide for themselves what to do based on the actual facts at hand, and to this alleged public servant, that would be a /bad/ thing.

            That’s what made objectively true facts into a false narrative. It’s exactly like the Timpa case. A fact that doesn’t promote the agenda is “false” (and therefore hidden from view) even though it’s actually, and objectively, true. A “fact” that does promote the agenda is “true” even if it is, objectively, false.

            That’s not science. That’s not even politics. That’s straight-up propaganda, right from the CDC that’s supposed to be about science and objective truth. It’s been obvious from the beginning that the CDC’s hand-waves in the name of “science” are nothing more than a bluff meant to silence critics and compel obedience in the way that a cult leader might declare, as the self-appointed sole arbiter of the word of whatever diety they believed in, that disagreement was heresy.

        2. Here you go Brett, while you are right that not all beds are occupied by Covi19 patients in Texas more than half are (https://www.tmc.edu/coronavirus-updates/overview-of-tmc-icu-bed-capacity-and-occupancy/). And guess what Texas had 6000 new cases yesterday and 7000 today. So that should just about fill up the rest of those beds. I wonder how Florida, Louisiana and Arizona are doing.

          1. Not every Covid case is an ICU bed.

            1. In fact, almost all Covid “cases” are NOT an ICU bed. All you need to be a Covid “case” is a positive test. You don’t even need to be currently symptomatic; “Case” is synonymous with “positive test”.

          2. You keep citing cases. Cases are not hospitalizations, or deaths
            Sweden also experienced an extraordinarily high number of deaths on a per capita basis. Yet the daily death count in Sweden has been declining steadily since early-to-mid April — a three month period. On April 15, Sweden matched its daily high death total of 155. A month later, with the number of new cases rising, the number of deaths was 57. Another month later, at or near the peak of reported new cases, the number was 29. In recent days, nearly a month after the peak in new cases, the number of deaths attributed to the virus has been in single digits.

            At least be smart enough to know what you don’t know.

        3. It’s not just elective procedures. Hospitals are designed to have most of their beds full most of the time. Empty beds are a waste of resources. So if you hear that a hospital is 80% or even 90% full, this is pretty meaningless. That was intended. It is extremely disingenuous for the media to report such numbers without providing context. Or without providing the commentary of the people who run the hospitals, who say they are nowhere near overwhelmed.

          1. Then there’s the certificate of need issue in many regions, based on central planning by government, limiting beds further “in normal times”.

        4. You are completely wrong, as usual.

          Elective procedures do not typically result in a stay in the ICU. You’d know this if you weren’t deliberately being obtuse.

      2. Rossami,

        You’ve clearly decided to bury your head in the sand and pretend that reality doesn’t exist as everyone else knows it.

        Florida and Texas both have multiple ICU’s which are at capacity. To the point where they are turning away emergency vehicles because they don’t have room for the patients.

        Maybe you should stop ignoring the news you don’t want to hear.

        1. Hospitals turning away emergency patients is not new or unique to this crisis. It happens at every hospital at least a couple times every year. ERs regularly divert ambulances based on short-term capacity. They always have.

          You accuse me of burying my head in the sand. I accuse you of being willfully ignorant of history and context. Yes, there are a few crowded hospitals. After normalizing for the months of delayed services that everyone’s now playing catch-up on, they are statistically no more crowded than they have been multiple times in the past. There is no mathematical or other evidentiary support for your implication that coronavirus patients are overloading hospitals.

    3. If we’re going to make fanciful predictions, why don’t we just find the fatality rate once COVID mutates into a super virus that kills 100% of the people who get it? Why stop so small?

  2. People are laser-focused on deaths, as if there are two potential states a human can be in: healthy or dead. This is a dangerously short-sighted view.

    For everyone who dies,

    19 more require hospitalization.
    18 of those will have permanent heart damage for the rest of their lives.
    10 will have permanent lung damage.
    3 will have strokes.
    2 will have neurological damage that leads to chronic weakness and loss of coordination.
    2 will have neurological damage that leads to loss of cognitive function.

    Please adjust your economic, political and personal risk profiles as appropriate.

    Source, with it’s own source listing: https://www.quora.com/How-can-a-disease-with-1-mortality-shut-down-the-United-States/answer/Franklin-Veaux

    1. Wow, a collection of incredibly authoritative- and precise-sounding statistics, based on one person’s cherry-picking of random web pages, cut and pasted from the peer-reviewed journal Quora. Now there’s some SCIENCE!

      1. Since when did clingers become fans of science?

        You seem more a Trump-Republican-superstition-clinger guy than a Fauci-reason-science-modern guy, Life of Brian.

        1. Love ya, Rev. Please do keep on shooting in the dark trying to pigeonhole me — I suppose at some point that has to be more fun than just cutting and pasting the same bitter drivel day in and day out.

        2. Sorry, dems don’t get to play the ‘party of science’ card anymore until you get the ‘biological sex doesn’t exist’, ‘2+2=4 is white supremacy’, and ‘the virus can’t get you as long as you’re protesting for the correct cause’ factions cleaned out.

          1. Science isn’t political.

            But since you’d like to pretend it is, how about Republicans don’t get to speak until you clear all the dipshits out of your ranks?

            You know – the ones who believe Trump tells the truth, that the Earth is flat, etc.

            1. Oooohhhh, such salient examples, wow! ….also, we’re libertarians here, fyi. Please calibrate your insults appropriately.

              1. You aren’t acting like one, and no – not everyone here is.

        3. “Since when did clingers become fans of science?”

          From the beginning. They just aren’t big fans of “science,” which is a distinctly different thing.

          1. Where “science” is just science that is inconvenient for Republicans to acknowledge.

      2. You don’t think a “Small business owner, sexuality educator, writer” is an expert at the medical effects of a virus.

        1. I prefer to get my medical information from game show hosts like Donald Trump and Chuck Woolery.

    2. Regardless of his citation, COVID does appear to have serious follow-on effects that the flu does not.

      1. Fake but accurate!

        1. Lung scarring and cardiac damage.

          Can only share one study, but I’m sure you can Google if you actually cared.
          https://pubs.rsna.org/doi/full/10.1148/radiol.2020200843

          1. Its not the flu, its basically pneumonia which often has residual effects that decrease in time.

            Snorkle is claiming extraordinary chronic permanent damage in nearly every hospitalized patient. Your study does not support that nor has enough time gone by to measure it.

            Discharged pneumonia patients still suffering reduced lung capacity is not extraordinary.

            1. Also heart stuff – COVID does weird clotting things.

              Science is still out, but I’m keeping an eye on this.

      2. Yes, follow on effects like heart damage, brain damage and lung damage. Meanwhile fewer heart attacks, strokes and pneumonia cases are being reported.

        It is probably good that much of professional sports is not happing or we would no doubt be seeing Covid causing concussions and joint injuries as well.

      3. Actually, those effects have been mentioned in context with influenza also. The cytokine storm that is probably at the center of all of this is thought to be the reason that the 1918 Spanish flu was so deadly, especially with younger victims (quite unusual with respiratory diseases).

      4. “… that the flu does not.”

        That seems wrong – there are certainly long term effects from the flu.

        It may (or may not) be true that covid has a higher incidence of long term complications than influenza – I wasn’t motivated to dig that deep, but googling ‘long term effects influenza’ shows lots of long term consequences of the flu. They just aren’t novel, and so don’t get a lot of press.

        My guess based on watching friends and relatives over the years (not exactly peer reviewed research there!) is that most infections that send you to the ICU for a week are going to have long term effects.

        Here is an interesting article on lasting effects from the 2018 flu pandemic. That focuses more on the economic effects, but see e.g. Fig 2 on the higher rates of disability decades later from males who were in utero during the peak of the pandemic.

        Plain old flu is a big deal, just one we are accustomed to.

    3. Kudos for providing your source but in fairness, it’s a pretty crappy one. The best of those studies are from the very early days of the infection when not much was known about the disease and even less was known about the rate of asymptomatic infections. During those early days, the easily identifiable victims were elderly with lots of co-morbidities. The validity of those statistics to our current understanding of the disease is weak at best.

    4. 19 more require hospitalization.
      18 of those will have permanent heart damage for the rest of their lives.
      10 will have permanent lung damage.
      3 will have strokes.
      2 will have neurological damage that leads to chronic weakness and loss of coordination.
      2 will have neurological damage that leads to loss of cognitive function.

      Really – extremely high number of individuals with permanent damage – Seems contrary to the well know medical knowledge of the human body’s amazing healing powers.

      1. Anyone who claims chronic conditions four months into our first experience with a novel virus is full of it. Not nearly enough time has passed to have remotely accurate statistics. Moreover, we have experience with similar symptoms from pneumonia. They tend to go away over time. It’s entirely reasonable to imagine the same will happen here.

      2. “Seems contrary to the well know medical knowledge of the human body’s amazing healing powers.”

        Go cut off your leg. See if it grows back…

        Maybe your understanding of the “..body’s amazing healing powers” doesn’t even reach the superficial level.

        1. “Go cut off your leg. See if it grows back…”

          This is seriously your argument criticizing someone’s understanding of the human body? Really? Did you just learn yesterday that humans are not really lizard people?

        2. “Maybe your understanding of the “..body’s amazing healing powers” doesn’t even reach the superficial level.”

          you just proved that your understanding of medical science doesnt reach the superficial level

    5. Right, which means that if deaths haven’t been going up, hospitalizations haven’t been going up, permanent heart damage hasn’t been going up, permanent lung damage hasn’t been going up, strokes haven’t been going up, neurological damage hasn’t been going up.

      The move in synch, and the fact that the deaths aren’t going up tells you what the others aren’t doing, either, baring somebody coming out with evidence to the contrary.

      1. The 7-day average of the US death rate has risen 40% in the past week. Unsurprisingly, it lags the case numbers.

        1. At the same time, the 7-day average for new cases has risen 200% over the same time and is 100% higher than in April. This necessarily means that the case fatality rate has fallen drastically since then. This is probably due to some combination of a younger, healthier population getting infected, better treatment options, and the fact that de Blasio already killed most of the vulnerable. ;-P

          1. This necessarily means that the case fatality rate has fallen drastically since then.

            No, it doesn’t, DJK. Don’t we all know, at this point, that deaths lag hospitalizations which lag cases? Don’t we?

            The death rate has certainly fallen for the reasons you state, but we can’t say by how much yet (so not necessarily “drastically”) because there is more widespread testing (the cases in April were primarily symptomatic because no symptoms no test) and because we haven’t reached the point where the 200% spike in cases can be associated with a spike in deaths.

            Deaths now were cases at the very front end of this most recent spike, not from the point where it was 200%. We have to give that another couple to four weeks.

        2. It would have to rise to 300% to match what it was at the peak of new deaths per day, when the new cases per day was half of what it is now.

    6. I agree with others that it’s a bit dangerous to extrapolate out the way that author did. Most of the things he cites are webpages and blips about studies of small groups of people, many of whom were hospitalized (and thus are more likely to incur problems).

      But I’ve been saying for weeks that it’s not the risk of mortality that scares me about the virus. In my age group, I’ve got a 99.7% of survival. It’s what happens if I suffer a stroke, heart attack, or other permanent, life-altering injury.

      1. If majority of people are asymptomatic or with mild symptoms, it means they won’t have strokes, heart attack or other permanent damage either.
        BTW, strokes can also occur through flu too to those who have that susceptibility.

        1. Look at the reports. Even people with “mild” cases are having strokes, embolisms, or other problems at a higher rate. That’s because “mild” may not be all that mild at all. It can still be debilitating, though not so bad that it requires a hospital stay.

    7. To all the naysayers, one can quibble with the specific stats, but it is well known by now that covid does leave many people with significant to major long term health problems.

      1. Cite meta-analyses demonstrating this. One off studies are worthless.

        1. We can’t have meta-analyses of long-term effects yet, because the oldest cases are from roughly six months ago.

          From Vox:

          The UK National Health Service assumes that of Covid-19 patients who have required hospitalization, 45 percent will need ongoing medical care, 4 percent will require inpatient rehabilitation, and 1 percent will permanently require acute care. Other preliminary evidence, as well as historical research on other coronaviruses like severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), suggests that for some people, a full recovery might still be years off. For others, there may be no returning to normal.

          The point is that, the best available evidence is that “covid will leave many people with significant to major long term health problems,” as Molly put it. Let’s hope not, but we should act and plan as if it will because that’s the way the best evidence points.

          1. Vox is not even close to a credible news source

            1. Great, then it should be easy for you to find where the reporting in this story is inaccurate. Because just saying they are not credible is an ad hominem attack and doesn’t actually refute anything.

          2. Sorry, Nova. No only is Vox a non-credible source, the very quote that you cite says that “The UK NHS assumes…” In other words, they are making projections and guesses.

            In absence of data, projections and guesses are all they can do – and may even be appropriate for the message they were trying to make. But those projections and guesses can not be mistaken for actual data.

            1. Rossami,

              Are you just not good at reading? Where did I say there was data.

              Me: We can’t have meta-analyses of long-term effects yet, because the oldest cases are from roughly six months ago.

              Shorter me: We can’t have the data you request, DJK.

              And you have a problem with that? What’s the basis for your objection to that point? You just remake my point at the end.

              Internet commenters are tedious sometimes.

    8. The claims are ludicrous.

      Start with the ratio of dead to hospitalizations. As of today (US numbers), total hospitalizations is around 265K. Total COVID deaths is around 138K. The ratio is closer to 2:1 than its is to 19:1. He doesn’t source where he found that ridiculous ratio. And the way he words it is disingenuous too. He says “For everyone who dies . . . 19 more will require hospitalization.” So the claim isn’t that for every death there are 19 hospitalizations, it’s that for every death there are 19 hospitalizations after you ignore the dead person’s hospital visit. Just insane.

      On his claim that for the 19 people hospitalized, 18 of them would have permanent heart damage the rest of their lives, that’s also wrong, per his source. The source says, instead, that in one study in Wuhan, 19% of patients suffered a “cardiac injury” during hospitalization (not “permanent”). He has another study, again from Wuhan, that found 12% of “patients” (i.e., hospitalized) “showed signs of cardiovascular damage”. Neither supports the breathless claim about either the damage “permanent heart damage for the rest of their lives” or that 18 out of 19 hospitalized patients (94.7%) suffered it.

      The precision of this person’s imprecision suggests dishonesty.

  3. Is ICU bed usage is up due to primarily to precautionary earlier admission to ICU? vs actual ICU cases?

    1. Or is SUPPLY being reduced?

  4. Remember one thing: George Floyd died of COVID-19.

    He tested positive and he is dead — that is the standard for being counted, except it’s expanded to almost anyone who dies of anything in a nursing home. There’s money involved.

    So the data is about as accurate as the Vietnam “body counts.”

    1. I took my child to the dentist. It was probably listed as COVID related treatment.

    2. It’s all a Chinese hoax, right, Ed?

    3. This is definitely not the criteria used for ascribing cause of death to Covid-19. The guidelines are that death is caused by Covid-19 or that Covid-19 led to death (by destroying the body’s ability to resist other illnesses. If you test positive and are hit by a garbage truck, you will not be classified as a Covid-19 fatality.

      There seems to be a lot of conspiracies surrounding Covid-19 deaths. Of course for them to make sense, it would require doctors and other medical personnel across the nation all be in on the game — willing to risk their livelyhoods and, perhaps, freedom for what? A few extra buck for their hospital? To make Trump look bad (despite very likely a majority of doctors being conservatives)? All this and no hospital staff coming forward to blow the whistle on this scam?

      1. It depends on the state, actually. There are conspiracy theories, and then there are substantive criticisms of the way that COVID deaths are being counted. Two different things.

        1. So, taking into account these “substantive criticisms,” what do you estimate the acual death count might be?

    4. No, he is not listed as a Covid death. Although he tested positive, the medical examiner didn’t attribute his death to Covid.

      From the Minn. Dept. of Health website:

      Deaths are for those who have died from COVID-19.

      Probable COVID-19 Deaths have COVID-19 listed on death certificate but a positive test not documented for the person. Because there was no positive test, these individuals are not included in total positive cases or total deaths from COVID-19.

  5. A nursing home, for example, may have a high incidence of infection (due to close contacts among many individuals) and severe disease (due to a high rate of underlying conditions) that does not reflect the frequency or severity of disease in the broader population of older adults.

    Please explain why that should not be read as a claim that the fatality rate gets much lower after you exclude the people most likely to die.

    1. It should be read as a claim that the fatality rate gets much lower after you exclude the people most likely to die anyway.

      1. I’m pretty sure everyone is likely to die. 100%, last I checked.

  6. Burn down a few more buildings and hold a few more multithousand person protests packed like sardines for BLM. Then blame a smaller trump rally somewhere for everything.Thats should knock the rates down a bit.

    1. The timelines indicate what the timelines indicate. I’m as surprised as you that the protests didn’t result in a nationwide spike of cases.

      Neither did the Tulsa rally, BTW.

      1. The Tulsa rally did result in more covid cases, but not that many cause only 6000 showed up.

        1. That’s the joke, but while there was an increase, it’s in keeping with the already existing increase Tulsa was experiencing.

        2. While the BLM protests. which are among the largest in history magically had no effect at all.

          1. Not magic, they were outside and wore masks. A demonstration that easy precautions work.

            1. BS I can pull up photo after photo of protestors not wearing masks or wearing them improperly. Plus a lot of stuff like the Floyd funeral took place indoors. and if being outside and wearing masks is the complete solution then 90% this lockdown is completely pointless. All we need to do is wear masks and be outside and thats it.

      2. The timelines indicate what the timelines indicate. I’m as surprised as you that the protests didn’t result in a nationwide spike of cases.

        I’m not that surprised. First, the protests were outside, and (while nothing is certain this early in the pandemic) it seems that transmission rates outdoors are very low.

        Second, most protesters were wearing masks.

  7. Ted Cruz endorses this message.

    Carry on, clingers.

  8. The professor is right about “grain of salt.” Nevertheless, Sen. Cruz is a self-absorbed schmuck for flying without a mandated facemask which he presumably did for political reasons. For all he knows, he is an asymptomatic carrier.

    Some of the religious right are going bat guano crazy over contact tracing. The life-begins-with-ejaculate set are dubious that a vaccine can be developed without fetal cell lines.

    1. At this point I think the cats out of the barn. We might have had a chance before the authorities showed that they really didn’t give a shit about COVID with the BLM protests. Now people on both sides have had their fill and will do whatever they want. It will go where it will go mildly or severely and short of a year long lockdown nothing is going to significantly alter the general course. We just have to settle for herd immunity.

      1. The cat is out of the barn and the horse has left the bag.

      2. ” Now people on both sides have had their fill and will do whatever they want. ”

        Sure . . . if they don’t mind losing a liquor license worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, the irresponsible bar owners can ‘do whatever they want.’

        Except sell alcohol.

        1. Oakland, CA has given a big middle finger to the edicts of the Alameda County Health Department, saying they will not enforce another ban on bars. Other cities in the county have done so as well. When you’ve lost the extreme liberals in the Bay Area, you’re cooked.

          1. The belligerent ignorance that inclines clingers to believe they are outsmarting a virus isn’t all bad; it is among the reasons conservatives are not competitive in the culture war or in American’s modern economy.

          2. They opened beaches officially because closing them had no effect. People have had enough, and without voluntary compliance, it’s a lost cause.

    2. Cruz was drinking coffee. Its in his left hand. Airline rules exempt mask wearing during eating and drinking as the article even says.

      Did “Hosseh Enad, a marketing associate for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee” take any other pictures of Cruz?

      1. You need to stop making sense. 🙂

      2. The politics of the person taking the photo are irrelevant. More importantly, the coffee that Cruz was drinking was obviously carried onto the aircraft. It’s not like he was served a cup of coffee and then removed his mask. I have not flown during the pandemic but I presume that First Class passengers are not provided with coffee in a paper cup.

        Moreover, most people who temporarily remove a mask keep it on the ear loops and pull it down.

        There is another photo in the thread of Cruz in the terminal without a mask. However, I would agree that there is no way of assuring us that the photograph was taken on the same day.

        1. “The politics of the person taking the photo are irrelevant. ”

          Really? Maybe not as to that particular picture but it certainly is as to the narrative: Cruz didn’t wear a mask on a flight.

          Its only illustrative of the particular time the picture was taken. Did Cruz wear a mask after he finished the coffee? Its several hours to Texas, how long did he have the mask off?

          Why didn’t Enad send other pictures?

        2. Moreover, most people who temporarily remove a mask keep it on the ear loops and pull it down.

          Which, if you’re going to wear a mask, is one of the worst things you can do with it. That directly infects your hands with whatever the mask has collected the entire time you’ve been wearing it, when you then can easily spread to your face/nose as well as things around you that you touch afterward.

          I completely agree that most people do this, which is one of the many reasons that the real-world benefit of mask mass usage cannot possibly be evaluated from lab studies testing discrete issues in isolated environments, or studies of medical professionals who are trained not to do things like the above.

  9. The CDC claims not to have originated the estimate, they reference a study by a couple of Australian epidemiologists who combined the results of several other studies. I do wonder though how the best estimate they provided of 0.68% mutated into the CDC’s 0.65%.

    1. CDC was saying 0.3% a while ago.

      1. Sort of. The CDC’s previous scenario report from about 6 weeks ago estimated a 0.4% case fatality rate and 35% asymptomatic infection rate, from which an article on Reason derived an infection fatality rate of under 0.3%. In the updated report they give an IFR of 0.65% and an asymptomatic rate of 40%, which by the same logic would imply a CFR of 0.9%.

  10. The problem is that they don’t know how many people have been infected. So the fatality ratio can be no better than one’s guess as to that.

      1. The error bars on the infection fatality ratio are rather large. We can calculate one number, the case fatality rate, very accurately. To get the infection fatality rate from that, we need to know what fraction of infections don’t ever get detected. That’s the hard part.

        1. We can calculate that very precisely, only because “case” is defined in terms of the infections you detect. The very precision derives from the reason we don’t much care about it.

  11. The death rate is very good news. We’re getting better at managing the symptoms than we were.

    The deaths per capita in the US went up these past 2 weeks for the first time in quite a while. Be interested in seeing how the infection fatality rate changes, if at all.

    1. I was watching CNN just now and they have the headline of no deaths in DC under the headline ‘Coronavirus Crisis’. Just thought that was kinda funny.

      1. I mean, it’s funny if you don’t understand how addition works.

  12. “A nursing home, for example, may have a high incidence of infection (due to close contacts among many individuals) and severe disease (due to a high rate of underlying conditions) that does not reflect the frequency or severity of disease in the broader population of older adults.”

    That may be a wrong assumption regarding “due to”. An article about a nursing home in Vermont said that they had 21 deaths. But all 21 had advance care directives that excluded artificial life support and intubation. Therefore, they were not moved to the hospital ICU because the ICU couldn’t do typical ICU things. The implication is that some of those 21 may have been saved if they didn’t have those living wills, not because of their pre-existing state of health.

    In a related subject, I’ve yet to hear a single news story about COVID deaths in a hospice. My guess is that they don’t scrutinize the cause of death in a hospice very much. Working against that is a rumor from New York that doctors there are faking death certificates to show COVID as the cause in all deaths. Why? Because federal aid is tied to number of COVID deaths. That should apply to hospice also.

    1. “My guess is that they don’t scrutinize the cause of death in a hospice very much.”

      Short of finding a knife buried in your back, not at all.

    2. I don’t know about your area but around me, most hospices are private and don’t get federal aid. COVID categorization won’t matter to them.

  13. Note the revised IFR is from a single paper from May, revised for a higher asymptomatic population. The paper itself is a survey of even earlier papers, from February to April. And some of the earlier reports (dated in February and March) predate our current understanding of COVID-19.

    There are some serious problems with estimates of the fatality rate, given the way different countries have been counting fatalities. In the United States, for example, in general a person is considered a COVID-19 fatality if they died *with* the disease, rather than if they’ve died *of* the disease. (There’s a good reason to do this: if someone with heart disease comes down with COVID-19, was their death accelerated by the disease?) This definition may skew fatality rate estimates upwards.

    A lower IFR, by the way, does not imply that this thing isn’t a problem. Even if the IFR of COVID-19 was the same as the flu (0.1%), the lack of any immunity against the disease implies at least a quarter million Americans dead of the disease. (And not “dead with the disease.”)

  14. For extra fun, this working paper published last week shows that Covid antibodies disappear from the body over a period of weeks and months, not years or never.

    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.07.09.20148429v1.full.pdf

    1. Your statement is worse than an oversimplification of the study. See Figure 4. The decline may look perpetual but those are logarithmic scales. Even very small amounts of neutralizing antibodies may be effective to prevent reinfection (or infection, for that matter).

  15. Too bad epistemic trespass can’t be criminalized. We need Damocles’ Sword of Truth.

    Yes, I had noticed the reports of waning Ab titers.

    We are 81 & 71 living relatively isolated rural impoverished Island getting lots of fresh air, sunshine, exercise, good food and moderate ethanol. NO TESTING is yet available locally, and not reports of any sort of cases.

    Seas of data are from little drips of personal anecdotes made. Is anyone listening? Influenza season is coming.

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