WRSA sends yesterday am:
Your SWAG on when the mortality sans advanced medical care here in USA will be known with reliability?
An interesting thought experiment.
Testing kits will not be available to the state departments of health until early next week.
Further testing will be pushed out to obvious, but not state level locations late next week. Sending testing kits to New York City would be an example here.
Guessing it will be some time late next week before the CDC, with a slower OODA loop than the virus, changes the testing recommendations to include anyone with symptoms of a viral illness.
Testing will jump sharply thereafter. It will take a week or two after that to work through the backlog and get a feel for what is really going on. By then the virus will have spread quite a bit, and I think somewhere in the neighborhood of 3 week from now is when we will see the first pronouncements of quarantines, school closures etc. I would guess that will also be about the time we will have a decent feel for the actual spread in the US.
On a more hopeful note, that’s also about the same time we should hear back preliminary data from the monster number of clinical trials that are currently ongoing. Mostly run by the Chinese, these trials are looking as current FDA approved drugs that could be used off-label for treatment of the severely or critically ill. Based on computer based structural prediction models, there are quite a few candidates. That won’t slow down the spread but will probably drop the death toll.
In terms of when things will get bad enough to overwhelm medical care and inflate the mortality numbers here in the US, that is a complex question that involves significant amounts of “wild ass” in the guessing. I put the initiation of quarantines at about 3 weeks from now, as above. We would be early in the exponential phase at that point, I would guess we will see the number of cases rise about a week or two after that. Based on what I am seeing reported, the first week of the disease is the run-in to weeks 2-3, when you really get sick. It won’t take much of a rise in sick cases to overwhelm the medical system that is already strapped. So, my back of the napkin guess is about 7-8 weeks from now is when things will be ugly.
Reality, however, doesn’t care about my opinion, and there are lots of things that could throw this off. Finding a good drug that treats it, or even better could be used to prevent it, would be nice. It would have limited impact up front due to lack of availability, but that could ramp quickly. Maybe Trump is right and warmer weather will help. Maybe we will get a handle on the role of kids in the spread of the disease. Right now they are out of proportion UNaffected by the disease, but are they carrying it and infecting others?
Things could go the other way, too. What if we find out that the Chinese have been downplaying this all along and the numbers are actually much worse than presented? Too many variables to really know.
I predict that in the next 1-2 weeks, Trump will try to shut down a large part of the media reporting, similar to what Obama did with the first Ebola epidemic. Unlike Obama, however, the press is his enemy and they will almost certainly defy him on that issue. This will be a make-or-break issue for Trump, and at the moment he’s not being fed good info.
Americans being Americans, it will be near impossible to maintain an effective quarantine. The economy here will be in even greater straits than China, as only a very small percentage Of Americans will have adequate cash reserves to be able to tolerate 2-4 weeks without a paycheck. Simply finding child care will be an incredible hardship for working families.
(Does this give folks on welfare a competitive advantage in terms of exposure and ability to maintain lifestyle, avoid creditors, not default on loans? Probably. It may also favor the Bern. Making promises that favor safety over freedom will be very enticing to those staring down the possibility of repossession of their homes, cars, etc Most of the 3rd and 4th order effects of this pandemic are not favorable to Trump or Team Freedom)
The sign of a company with a quick OODA loop are the ones that are already determining what component of their business can be done via telework, creating flexible shift options so that people can hand off child care with another working spouse, those that have stocked deep hand washing equipment or sanitizer and cleaning solutions. The quick ones have already obtained alternate sources of parts and supplies, etc.
The slow OODA loops are those hospitals who only yesterday have started to review their PPE supplies and have discovered, to their horror, that all masks not under lock and key have grown legs and disappeared.
Gab may stay up.
Hams, let’s try to get a net live this week. Volunteers really needed. LMK.