Don’t Fear COVID-19 Stats…. Understand Them
This article was published on: 04/15/20 11:14 PM by Mike Minarsky
There’s one thing that you have to stop worrying about right away when it comes to COVID-19. It’s the amount of people that have tested positive for the virus. The number or amount of people that the state is saying having tested positive for Coronavirus doesn’t add up to a whole lot of beans, and it certainly doesn’t really hold any weight if you are trying to make an argument on the statistic or just understand it at all. All the number represents is the number of people that have tested positive based on the amount of tests that have been given. That’s it. It doesn’t account for the people that have NOT had a test but providers may assume they have the virus based on the symptoms they are showing. There are more and different numbers that are much more meaningful that speaks to the damage that this virus is doing.
What happens when Quinnipiac College takes a poll. They ask a sample size of people based on what data they are trying to collect. Testing for the virus is very similar as far as predicting the spread, where it’s going, is the curve bending as they say. If this theory is correct, then we have to assume that the percentage of Connecticut residents that test positive is the more important number.
As of 4/15/20, per the state of Connecticut’s website dedicated to Coronavirus, there have been a total of 50,143 people that have had the test administered. Laboratory confirmed cases are 14,755. That means that 29.43% of Connecticut residents have taken the test and it came back positive.
Not everyone is going to get a test, plain and simple. However at the beginning, the prediction was between a 40%-70% infection rate. What level of infection obviously is case by case and yes THERE ARE LOTS OF PEOPLE THAT RECOVER. However, we have to also assume that almost 1 in 3 are infected at this point or will be. This of course is over all age groups. You can also see what the mortality rate is per age group on the state of Connecticut site, but you would have to figure out the percentages, which happens to be the important number.
The other number that is important is the number of hospitalizations there are from a day to day basis. When the number starts to level off and not as many people are hospitalized, that’s when the “curve is flattening” so to speak. However, that hasn’t happened yet and we still, in Connecticut have a bit to go. The 13th and 14th seemed to be showing some promise as far as the number of people being admitted was staying somewhat the same day over day… until today, April 15th, where 179 patients were admitted. This doesn’t mean that they all have COVID-19, they may be showing symptoms. Influenza is still there, bacterial pneumonia is still there.
So, what’s the point of this diatribe? The point is that if we are going to be fearful of something, we have to know what the hell we are fearful of. Are we afraid of the number of positive tests in your town? Does it make you feel uneasy to know that list is growing on a daily basis which it will until the virus gets contained? Or, are we just getting more and more fearful of each other. That’s one of the intangible damaging factors that this virus is also creating, fear of each other. Does the person next to me in the grocery store have it, is that why they are wearing a mask or are they wearing it for my protection. If we are truly all in this together, then again, we have to be understand what we are worried about and most people, like me, are afraid of what they don’t know. Put the stats in better perspective that you see on a daily basis, or just don’t look at them at all. Most of all, don’t be afraid of each other. Yes, practice social distancing, stay at home whenever possible but you are going to come in somewhat close proximity of another person every day.
A lot of this is based on numbers based opinion, but the fear isn’t.