Coronavirus Herd Immunity May Arrive Soon, Just Watch Northern Italy:
Getting the numbers right can be tricky but rewarding pursuit.
Even in the middle of a health crisis.
Whether it’s staying 6 feet apart, self-quarantining for 14 days, or having at-least 4 cloth masks so you can throw 1 or 2 in the wash while you use the others to protect yourself and other people.
Well, an interesting bit of numbers-nerdery has come out of Nottingham, England and it might mean positive change for coronavirus infections is just around the corner…
Differing Factors May Change The Future Of Coronavirus:
So back in the Joe Rogan Experience entry, we learned from Dr. Michael Osterholm about something called, “Herd Immunity”.
It basically means that once a certain percent of the population becomes vaccinated for a disease,
The infection rate goes down precipitously, and it’s very hard for additional people to catch the illness.
And The Short Answer is that Dr. Mike says that number is typically at 60-70% of the population.
But a new study says it might be as much as 50% less than those numbers.
Read on to find out the details…
Revenge Of The Nerds!:
So the new work was put together not by epidemiologists or virologists, but Mathematicians.
Teams working together in England and Sweden came up with the new calculation by adding some nuances to the virus-hunter maths.
What they incorporated is a list of additional variables that include:
1) Likelihood of being infected
1a) -Instead of the standard model’s likelihood of being Vaccinated, because there is no vaccine. A subtle but important difference.
2) Frequency of movement outside the home
3) Likelihood of congregating with other people
-To name a few.
And what the team(s) found was that since there is no -Vaccine-, the true Herd Immunity number might vary from accepted stats.
Small Changes, Big Differences. Even From “The Memorial Day Massacre”?:
They may have also taken into account how much a younger and healthier, but still asymptomatic person would be to venture out among others like them,
Versus a more at-risk person like a senior-citizen who self-isolates at home.
Strangely enough, the recent rise in US cases following the Memorial Day reopenings may strengthen the mathematicians’ theories.
Because there is a possibility that most of the people in the new “Hot Zone” states followed one of the riskier behavior-patterns outlined.
Like blatantly-ignoring the guidelines on mask-wearing and social-distancing.
And here’s where we come to a strange pivot.
Back To The Future! New World, Meet Old World:
Because Dr. Anthony Fauci has recently stated that with 100,000 new cases per day because of these new Hot Zones,
The US may reach the 50% Infection-Rate level by the end of 2020.
And that’s where the next wave of this unfortunate experiment comes in.
Because in Bergamo, Italy, they’re already there.
A new piece of work by the local & national health agencies and ISTAT, Italy’s national statistics agency shows for that town,
The infection rate reported through antibody-tests is just a shade above half, up at 57%.
Could An Early Hot Zone Predict The Future Of Coronavirus Herd Immunity?:
Now they haven’t tested every one of the 122,243 approximate residents.
It’s only just about 20% of the population at 20,000 antibody-tests.
But that’s still pretty good compared to the US; we’d have to reach 66,000,000+ tests to achieve the same figure and we’re nowhere near that.
The best we have here is 33 Million tests, but the CDC does not break that down into separate percentages of viral vs. antibody.
Ie: You have it now, or you had it at some point in the past, respectively.
So now, since Northern Italy was one of the original Hot Zones for Covid-19 outside China,
The question becomes, Does Bergamo see any new cases, or do they flatten and go to zero?
No Vaccine Soon, So Watch Bergamo Italy’s Stats!:
If that lasts, then the UK-Sweden stats gurus may be right.
And although the specific type of group protection is a very-costly and very-dumb way to fight a disease,
The fact is: There is no vaccine in-sight before April, 2021.
So, if the US’s unfortunate new 1st-wave outbreaks in the south, west, & southwest have some crumb of silver-lining,
Maybe we have a chance at achieving some type of +/- Herd Immunity even before the vaccine shows up.
And now we just wait for the updates on coronavirus new case reports, especially out of Northern Italy…