Be wary of reports that the new Imperial College modeling on Coronavirus has downgraded the threat. With headlines like these (below), you could be forgiven for thinking Coronavirus posed less of a problem. The updated model talked of UK deaths being “only” 20,000, not 500,000, but because they were modeling two totally different scenarios. The update assumed that drastic action had started.
The headlines could have said “Draconian Shutdown could save 480,000 lives”.
If Ferguson has any confidence now that the virus will peak a lot sooner — in mid-April — and the UK will not crash their hospital ICU bed supply, it’s only because the country is finally taking serious action and because “the UK should have the testing capacity “within a few weeks” to copy what South Korea has done and aggressively test and trace the general population.
The full Imperial College report by Neil Ferguson’s team doesn’t suggest anything like these headlines imply. Ferguson himself has responded on twitter that the transmission of the virus is slightly faster than they thought, but the lethality is the same.
He now thinks the Ro (rate of infection) is over 3, up from 2.5.
UK has enough intensive care units […]
March 28, 2020 at 03:27AM