The coronavirus has torn through communities across the globe, leaving a trail of death, despair and financial destitution. However, there are some glimmers of hope that the virus is finally slowing down. Take a close look at the numbers and you will find Italy, Spain and parts of the United States are beginning to “flatten the curve.” The reduction in positive tests is certainly good news yet, the progress could easily be reversed if the masses refuse to practice social distancing in the ensuing weeks. Let’s take a closer look at why there is reason for hope.
All Eyes are on New York City
New York City has quickly become the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. Though the city’s deaths have escalated on a daily basis, hospitalizations resulting form the virus are slowing. The hope is we are reaching a peak in deaths that will eventually lead to a gradual decline, paving the way for normalcy to be restored. Though it is certainly discouraging that our nation’s death toll is climbing, it is important to think of this statistic as a lagging indicator in that it takes weeks or even months for those battling coronavirus to succumb to the virus and depart this plane of existence.
As New York Governor Andrew Cuomo states, New York City’s infection curve is gradually flattening in spite of the fact that the city’s number of critically ill individuals is increasing. The reduction in infections is a good sign for the Big Apple as well as the rest of the United States. This decrease in infections will inevitably lead to fewer critically ill patients and less death in the months to come.
Crunch the Numbers
An in-depth analysis of the statistics provided by hospitals tells the truth about the status of the coronavirus pandemic. The number of coronavirus patients admitted to hospitals spiked 4% since Monday. This is positive news as it is the fourth consecutive day that the number of infected patients grew 7% or less following a period of 30% growth per day across the previous weeks. Furthermore, there is also a silver lining in the fact that the number of individuals who require ventilator use at intensive-care units increased at the smallest single-day clip across a two-week span, rising a mere 2% this past Monday.
Coronavirus is Also Slowing Around the Globe
The virus appears to be slowing its spread in New York City yet, such a reduction does not really mean that much unless the spread is also reduced in other parts of the world. Recent data shows the rate of increase in new COVID-19 cases has declined in Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom. The numbers indicate countries are beginning to proactively manage this crisis in a truly effective manner. Though the medical community across the globe assumes the number of coronavirus cases will rise, the increase is occurring at a slower rate than weeks ago.
Take a look at the coronavirus Worldometer data-tracking website that details COVID-19 outbreak patterns throughout the world and you will find a trend is emerging: a peak in cases followed by a decline in recent days. Though one cannot conclude that the virus is losing steam from Worldometer alone as the period of time for the decreases in new diagnoses is too short, preliminary data suggests global social distancing really is hindering the spread of the virus.
Consider the following anecdotal evidence: Italian Professor Luca Richeldi stated a mere 50 individuals were transported to intensive-care units this past Sunday. This is quite the reduction from the 120 patients brought to intensive-care units in the prior two days. Furthermore, Neil Ferguson, a leading epidemiologist in the United Kingdom recently stated Britain’s key coronavirus indicators show signs of slowing.
Though these examples are certainly anecdotal, they provide much-needed hope that COVID-19’s infection rate is declining. A reduction in infections means there will also be a reduction in deaths, possibly setting the stage for a re-opening of the economy at some point in the summer or fall.