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Delay = death. Countries that act slowly increase the fatality rate by 10x

Posted By Jo Nova On March 18, 2020 @ 2:35 am In Global Warming | Comments Disabled

Dithering politicians push the fatality from 0.5% toward 5%

A gritty analysis by Tomas Pueyo shows how leaders inertia is killing people every day. Some of the victims of tomorrows Virus Get-Togethers won’t die for a few weeks, but the next batch starts tomorrow (and every day until the nation self-isolates, stops the pox-parties, the cough-shopping, and pneumonia-planes. ). And each day there are more than the day before. Sounds macabre, but at this point in an exponential epidemic, it’s just how it is. Since we didn’t stop the Airbussed virus, we’re going to have to shut everything down anyhow, the later we do it, the larger the cost, and the longer it takes. We have to get ahead of this virus.

Meanwhile in Australia, the average punter seems to realize this and the mood is hitting feverish notes with tramplings in supermarkets — The government is calling for calm, but doctors are calling for borders to close, and schools to go online, they’re standing outside schools with signs telling parents not to send their children to school. Doctors are warning that we are the next “Italy” if we don’t get our act together. But the government says it’s too early to close schools (apparently we have to kill some more people first). The keep-schools-open excuses are bizarre: parents are being told to send kids to school so that kids don’t stay home and infect grandparents — which implies that they will infect parents and somehow that is OK. Ministers doesn’t seem to realize that if kids stay home with grandparents early, and we stop this spreading, no one gets sick in the first place. The other excuse to keep the schools open is that healthcare workers need the childcare which South Korea solved by holding small “emergency” classes of under ten students. Better for healthworkers kids and the teachers. In some schools in NSW and Victoria a quarter to a half of all students are already absent as parents keep them home. The Catholic School system (which huge here) is calling for stoppages. Teachers, not surprisingly are not too happy about being sacrificial child minders. They don’t understand why a crowd of 500 is not OK, but a school of 1000 is. And finally some cancer patients, disabled folk and longer lived humans are identifying as the 1-4% who “Are expected to die” and they don’t like being referred to as a casual-nevermind-addendum.

When’s the best time to stop an epidemic? Before it becomes one.

Pueyo calculates the likely final death rates in different areas by converging two different ways to estimate it. Far in the future some countries are headed for a 0.5% while others are aiming for 4% — it depends on the day they start.

How many people will start down a path to dying tomorrow…

Peuyo has a handy method to guesstimate the “percentage of infected employees” or odds of getting infected in your own state — he’s trying to help people answer the question “when should you lock down”. Read it all.

h/t to Orson Olsen for the excellent tip.

Coronavirus: Why You Must Act Now

Tomas PueyoTomas Pueyo

This is what you can conclude:

  • Excluding these, countries that are prepared will see a fatality rate of ~0.5% (South Korea) to 0.9% (rest of China).
  • Countries that are overwhelmed will have a fatality rate between ~3%-5%

Put in another way: Countries that act fast can reduce the number of deaths by a factor of ten. And that’s just counting the fatality rate. Acting fast also drastically reduces the cases, making this even more of a no-brainer.


Some countries have kept the exponential curve at bay…


Notice the main rise and fall plays out over four weeks of lockdowns. And also that it takes 12 days from major action to slow the ship and start to see a difference.

Deaths in Hubai, Infections, progression, timeline, graph.

He estimates that the true rate of infections (grey lines) rises much faster than the recognised cases.

The two estimates of death rates converge on under 1% or close to 4%. The difference comes down to the day the leader gets their act  together. No country on Earth has enough ICU beds for this virus. The later they stop the spread the sooner the hospital wards overflow.

The death rate in central China will end up around 5%. The rate in the rest of China is more like 1%.

Deaths in Hubai, Infections, progression, timeline, graph.

The rate in South Korea is tending towards 0.5%. (Though it is a pretty “out there” graph — South Korea is one of a kind.)

In Italy the curves are headed towards 4%. The hospitals are totally overrun. Here’s hoping they can bring that back fast. But suddenly it’s clear why the semi lock down one day became a nation lockdown the next.

I heard tonight that Italy has more hospital beds per capita than the US does.

Fatality rate China, Hubei.

Wow. What China did.

 The lengths at which it went to contain the virus are mind-boggling. For example, they had up to 1,800 teams of 5 people each tracking every infected person, everybody they got interacted with, then everybody those people interacted with, and isolating the bunch. That’s how they were able to contain the virus across a billion-people country.

This is not what Western countries have done. And now it’s too late.

I do have a reservation with the Pueyo analysis — he doesn’t seem to realize the Chinese stats are computer modeled CCP estimates of something probably ten fold higher. But the rates in China match elsewhere — they might have been using the real ratios, even they faked the numbers to hide the scale. There are only a couple of sentences that hinge on the actuals – -I don’t think Wuhan was really locked down when infections were .  Otherwise, the trend is King, unfortunately.



Coronavirus Background: ☀ The Demographics: the young are spared, but the severity increases with age, and slightly more for men than women. ☀ The Ro is 2 – 3 and exponential curves are steep. How Coronavirus kills: why the number of ICU units matters so much. ☀ Illness progression: Dry coughs and Fevers, Aches. In 15% of people, by day 5 breathing trouble starts. In 3% (?) by day 8 they may need an ICU (intensive care unit). ☀ The good case of Singapore but the ominous calculations of how fast the ICU beds may run out. ☀ Proof that viruses don’t have wings and we should have stopped all flights so much earlier. ☀ The story of how American Samoa avoided Flu Deaths with quarantine in 1918. ☀ The story of Vo, the Italian town that stopped the virus. ☀ Delay = Death, statistics show mortality rates rise tenfold if hospitals are overwhelmed. ☀

Economics: ☀ The huge impact on the Chinese economy, the awful case of Iran.☀

Beware UN advice:Ethiopian WHO chief was part of China’s debt trap diplomacy ☀

Stats and Data: John Hopkins Live Map Worldometer Coronavirus data in Australia


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