Thursday, August 27, 2020

The great pandemic is mostly over

The US CDC released weekly COVID-19 mortality update. There is a lot of data there, but a couple of things stuck out to me. First, there have been no significant excess COVID-19 deaths in any age group for about 3 months. Yes, there are still people dying of the disease, but it is mostly people over age 70, and they are dying at the rate that they would be dying anyway. Second, it says:
For 6% of the deaths, COVID-19 was the only cause mentioned. For deaths with conditions or causes in addition to COVID-19, on average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or causes per death.
The official US death toll is about 182,000, but that includes deaths with multiple causes. The CDC has data about excess deaths but it is tricky to interpret directly. It uses a model that says deaths should have been going down since Jan. 1, 2020. The current death rate, from all causes, is about the same as what was predicted for Jan. 1, 2020, so the CDC says that there are still excess deaths. It appears to me that the number of deaths that can be fairly attributed to COVID-19 is maybe half the official figure.

No comments: