Late Night Thoughts: Kudos to Charlie Baker

The United States over the last 24 hours has seen an 11% increase in number of cases and a 15% increase in deaths. This dropped down from the day before which was 12% and 17% increases.  Italy for the fourth day has seen a 4% increase in cases down from its 7 to 8% increases; with deaths over the last four days it has seen increases of 6%, 5%, 5%  and 4%. These leveling off and slightly downward curves are encouraging. Spain in positive cases has over the last four days gone from 7% increase to 6%, 6% and 5%.; in deaths it has gone from a 10% increase to 9, 8 and 6% increases. It too is experiencing a slowing of the increase. That seems to be good news and let us hope it continues.

Starting around the 4,000 death figure over the four following days the US has gone from 3,872 to 8,376 an increase of 4,504;  Over the same time period Italy went from 4,032 to 6,820 an increase of 2,788, and Spain from 4,145 to 7,340 and increase of 3,195.

We have already set the record for deaths in one day.  It is hard to tell what the projection rate will be over the next few days but the Trump administration is promising us a lot of deaths. I assume they are comparing us to what they have seen in Italy and Spain and noticing how we are outpacing them. It looks like we will soon have the most deaths along with the most positive cases in the world. How can anyone feel we are doing a good job?

I hope we can get out of the double digits in deaths and down to the 5% rate sooner than later. Yet  with eight states still not having its people stay at home  I’m not sure that will happen. The states are all led by Republican governors and are with the number of positive cases and deaths in parenthesis: Arkansas (743 –  14), Iowa (786 – 14), Nebraska (321 – 6) , North Dakota (186 – 3), South Dakota (212 – 2), South Carolina (1917 – 40) , Utah (1428 – 8), and Wyoming   (187 – none reported). Fortunately they represent around 8% of the population so they may not impact the figures too much I things change substantially in them.

I’m following nine states with respect to their death statistics: California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Texas and Washington.   As I mentioned the US has had a 15% increase in deaths, the states in declining order are: New Jersey 24%, New York 18%, Florida 15%, California 14%, Texas 14%, Massachusetts 11%, Louisiana 10%, Georgia 8%, and  Washington  8%. When you consider the figures from Italy and Spain that show their increases being around 5% then you can see we have a long way to go.

I understand Massachusetts is going to come up with a program where we begin to do more tracing. Kudos to Charlie Baker for this. He said There is tracing happening now, but this program that we’re talking about launching today is a much more robust, targeted approach that we hope can be highly effective at slowing the spread of this highly infectious disease.”

He plans to “create a virtual call center of approximately 1,000 people by the end of the month. They will work to trace those who have had close contact with patients who test positive for the virus.” He went on to say: “Massachusetts will be the only state in the country putting together this kind of programming. There’s no nationwide tracking that’s currently being done and we anticipate that we need to get out ahead of this.”

The idea of testing, tracing and isolating is one that works. Charlie Baker understands this. Good for him.