The COVID-19 epidemic presented in charts. How to scare or calm down with the same, perfectly valid statistics.

The impression you want to make on the public depends on how you want to present the data in charts. This is the data for the COVID-19 outbreak you would use if you are a reporter working for the mainstream media.

The chart is absolutely true, and is selected to scare you as much as possible.

Governor Cuomo of New York does no longer want to scare you, but present a clear and present danger, since New Yourk State has nearly half of all COVID19 cases, and NYC by itself nearly a quarter of all cases. He then would choose a statistics that shows the infection rate per million people

While hardly comforting, the chart is equally true, but not nearly as alarming as the first one.

Now, there is great debate if any of the two charts above show the real picture. The cases are confirmed only if a test has been made, and many go on unnoticed.

A better statistics would then be made by only counting the COVID-19 deaths, and again show the result as per million people. This would be the most accurate to show, and is used by the modelers and forcasters in the Trump/Pence task force.

Italy is doing poorly with an over 11% death rate, Spain next with 8, France is slowly increasing, but not as slow as Iran, which has different travel habits between cities and villages. United States and Germany show a very similar pattern, and both countries have excellent health systems with by far the most emergency rooms per capita of any nation.

One nation has done significantly better. Japan has a death rate of 0.3 %. It is probably because they are an obedient people and practice social separation anyway, they don’t shake hands, they bow, and they have a habit of wearing masks if they cough or sneeze.

And yes, there is one more country, China. They are officially over the crisis, but anecdotal evidence tells another story. There was an increase in demand for at least 40000 cremation urns this winter in the City of Wuhan alone, and the Chinese government paid for the cremation if the cause of death was not disclosed. Another nugget of evidence is that Chinese Telecom lost 18.5 million wireless customers and two million wired customers in January and February. They are busing in and training peasants from the countryside to fill the factories to get the production started up again after they shut down the country for a month. The Chinese Government has been less than transparent.

 

Published by

lenbilen

Retired engineer, graduated from Chalmers Technical University a long time ago with a degree in Technical Physics. Career in Aerospace, Analytical Chemistry, computer chip manufacturing and finally adjunct faculty at Pennsylvania State University, taught just one course in Computer Engineering, the Capstone Course.

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