The First Ward Cornavirus Report – May 4, 2020

The First Ward Cornavirus Report – May 4, 2020

Sunday’s numbers may well have been our best yet with every indicator lining up in a positive way! I don’t want to get too giddy until we see a few more days like this, but it is a massive morale booster nonetheless!

Here’s the table:

Date   Cases   % Increase  N Cases  N Tested  Prevalence  Deaths 

4/15   24,593            5.7          1,346           6,313       1 in 4.7          948

4/16   25,733            4.8          1,180           5,660       1 in 4.8       1,072

4/17   27,575            7.1          1,842           7,574       1 in 4.1       1,134

4/18   29,160            5.7          1,585           7,241       1 in 4.5       1,259

4/19   30,357            4.1          1,197           5,914       1 in 5          1,290

4/20   31,508            3.8          1,151           5,040       1 in 4.4       1,349

4/21   33,059            4.7          1,551           6,639       1 in 4.3       1,468

4/22   35,108            6.1          2,049           9,350       1 in 4.6       1,565

4/23   36,934            5.2          1,826           8,969       1 in 4.9       1,688

4/24   39,658            7.3          2,724         16,315       1 in 6          1,795

4/25   41,777            5.3          2,119         11,985       1 in 5.6       1,874

4/26   43,903            5.0          2,126         12,975       1 in 6.1       1,933

4/27   45,833            4.4          1,930         13,096       1 in 6.75     1,983

4/28   48,102            4.9          2,269         14,561       1 in 6.4       2,125

4/29   50,355            4.6          2,253         14,478       1 in 6.4       2,215

4/30   52,918            4.8          2,563         13,200       1 in 5.2       2,355

5/1     56,055            5.6          3,137         14,821       1 in 4.7       2,457

5/2     58,505            4.3          2,450         15,208       1 in 6.2       2,559

5/3     61,499            4.8          2,994         19,417       1 in 6.5       2,618

Illinois has tested 319,313 people, and to no one’s surprise, we’re still in fourth place in the national coronavirus rankings. But the best news is, a new record testing day – 19 percent better than the previous April 24 high – produced just our second-best new case day. That sent the prevalence back out to 1 in 6.5.

Facts Not Fear 3

Remember! Having to test more people to get fewer positive results is the kind of disconnect that tells us the doom and gloom press and epidemiologists continue to get it wrong. I know I’m starting to sound like broken record, but the State really needs to start tracking how many of our new cases are asymptomatic.

But there are other clues that indicate those folks are finally being tested, too!

The first is the mortality rate which slipped a notch to 4.2 percent, the lowest level since April 19. If you recall, we discussed how the mortality rate should always be the mortality rate, but it will retreat if we are testing more of the “asymptomatic horde.”

The other promising factor is just 59 people died of the disease yesterday. And that’s  particularly encouraging when increased testing led to higher case numbers and we should’ve seen a commensurate spike in deaths ten to fourteen days down the road.

But we’re witnessing a rather steep decline instead.

And that trend is supported by the largest drop in COVID-19 occupied ICU beds and ventilators yet:

Date   ICU Beds     %+     Ventilators      %+

4/23       1,225                         709

4/24       1,244        1.5            763               7.6

4/25       1,267        1.8            772               1.1

4/26       1,249       -1.4            763              -1.1

4/27       1,245       -0.3            778               1.9

4/28       1,290        0.3            777              -0.1

4/30       1,289       -0.8            785               1.0

5/1         1,263       -2.0            777              -1.0

5/2         1,250       -1.0            789               1.5

5/3         1,232       -1.4            759              -3.8

Again, considering the ten to twelve days it typically takes for a serious coronavirus case to hit the ICU, April 24’s then record case number should’ve meant some seriously crowded ICUs now. But instead, we haven’t seen an increase in ICU bed usage for four straight days!

And that’s the clearest sign that the pandemic isn’t nearly taking the toll the “experts” declared it would. This has nothing to do with shelter-in-place, either, because increased cases should, by definition, always mean busier ICUs and more deaths.

Our second-best new case day meant the daily new case percentage increase came in a little higher at 4.8 percent, but just like all of our other indicators, it’s telling us the disease is decelerating in all the ways we need it to decelerate.

Again, if the opposite were true, would Chicago be shutting down the temporary McCormick Place medical facility?

But as Governor Pritzker and Mayor Lightfoot persisting in demanding we stay home – and Lightfoot is now threatening arrests – I want to ask them, “What’s your plan?,” because neither one seems to have one.

Thanks to their heavy handedness and a raft of progressives shouting “stay home” at every turn, for all intents and purposes, shelter-in-place and social distancing is moot! That certainly was the case at the St. Charles Lowe’s and in my adjoining neighborhood this weekend!

So, are we all gonna simply sit on our asses for the two years it takes to develop a vaccine – a vaccine that may never work – because the unavoidable fact is, the second we start reopening in earnest is the second we’ll have to face down that inevitable second coronavirus wave.

Not only that, but I’d like to ask those same progressive brothers and sisters, the ones who so self-righteously insist they know what’s best for the rest of us, how are 30 million newly unemployed American workers going to weather another month of economic disaster? What’s your plan for them? Another $1,200? Are you going to start taking them into your homes?

Here’s an article by an author who impeccably argues that layoff related deaths will supersede the COVID-19 variety by 41 percent! So, if anyone can tell me what the shelter-in-place goal is right now, I’m all ears, because there doesn’t seem to be one!

Delaying the onslaught of the pandemic so we could get a better handle on it was the right thing to do, but now we’re only putting off the inevitable. Herd immunity is our only option,  so we may as well get started!

Stay safe!

10 thoughts on “The First Ward Cornavirus Report – May 4, 2020

  1. Interesting article you linked to. However, the number of layoff-related deaths superseding covid-19 deaths by 41% assumes a covid-19 death count of 60,000, which we have already exceeded by 10,000 in just a little over two months. It also assumes a worst-case scenario of 30% or higher unemployment for the next year! The article’s “base-case” and more realistic estimate of 41,000 layoff related deaths is much less than the amount of covid-19 deaths. Since we had some projections of 100,000 – 240,000 deaths, and we are going to approach the low-end of that with the restrictions we have had in place, you could argue that the restrictions have dramatically lowered the number of deaths we will see from covid-19 by much more than 41,000. I am sure the gentleman who wrote the article and works for a company that supports the airline industry is definitely interested in ending the shelter-in-place orders as soon as possible! That’s probably why he argued so impeccably!

  2. Would it be possible to get flu/pneumonia deaths and hospital cases from 2018 for Chicago and suburbs and then compare that with information now?

    I can only find data for the whole state.

  3. I understand the herd immunity thought. I really do. But are we ready as a country to really see what that looks like.

    I remember asking my grandmother before she died a few years ago about the Great Depression. It was horrible we all know that.

    A lot of people are scared as well to watch people die. It is happening we know it. Just what are the true numbers? Are we ready for 5 to 6 million deaths? Are we even immune once we get it? Will we be immune forever?

    These are some serious questions I feel that need to be addressed before we just go free willy. Stay away from the politics and actually let scientists who do this for a living work to figure it out.

    How long was the great depression? Can’t we pull ourselves up by the boot straps and get through some more time opening up safe and slow?

    1. Joe,

      As I consistently repeat, this this is much worse than the flu for the elderly with other medical conditions and not nearly as bad as the flu for people under 50 with no other problems.

      So, we know exactly who to protect. The only other option is to sit on our asses for 2 years while they develop a vaccine that might not work. Then they’ll be nothing to come back to.

      As far as the correct answer to the pandemic goes, most of the “scientists” are getting it dead wrong. We already know the answer.

  4. It’s understandable to be leery of opening up the country. What we all have to realize is this is the new normal and follow safe protocols. If that means that people who are in the older age groups need to stay away from crowds, then so be it! I’m in that age group and I feel this is the sacrifice our generation needs to make to get our economy back. In many respects, it harkens back to world war 2 and the sacrifices people made.

    This virus isn’t just going to go away, however I have heard that like other viruses, it may diminish in strength over time – not sure how long we are talking about though. Until then, we need to be smart people. God gave us all brains – so use them!

    The main thing now is to get people back to work. Don’t even get me started about the sad state of affairs that Illinois is in and has been in for years. This virus is the dagger in this states economy. Let those younger citizens back to work. Use common sense and be safe!

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