Trump’s 1% of Coronavirus Infection Reached

Trump’s 1% of Coronavirus Infection Reached

Commentators have been scratching their heads for a week or so wondering what Trump meant by his statement that only 1% of Americans were affected by the Coronavirus.  My interpretation is the mildest to Trump.  We have now reached 3,300,000 identified cases, which is 1% of the US population of 330 million.  

We have incurred 135,000 deaths today, for a ratio of 4.1%, which is more favorable than earlier, when it was 5%.  This is because we can now test more than those with definite symptoms, because the newly infected population is younger and more survivable, because we now have Remdesivir, and because we are still riding the rise of the second wave, whereas deaths occur on the back side of the wave.  Trump should realize that the more testing there is, especially now, the more the calculated lethality goes down, lessening the threat.

In March and April, the CDC estimated that there were 10 times more cases than appeared in the amount of testing that they had done.  Its amazing that they do not have a firm number now, but several states are in another explosion of cases.

It’s hard to know what to make out of the CDC numbers, since they should depend on what the distribution of infections are in the various age and racial segments of the population.  This also applies to the sources of infections, from nursing homes to prisons to meat packing plants, to large gatherings, and to bars.  They now say that 40% of cases are asymptomatic.   They also say that 50% of transmissions are from presymptomatic cases.

The White House is presenting a list of misconceptions or situation dependent statements from Dr. Fauci, which of course change as we get more PPE and more knowledge.  They are of course inviting a comparison to Trump’s purposeful lies about the administration’s lack of preparation, follow up, minimizing the threat, failure to back masks and social distancing, and Trump’s world of fantasy and magical predictions.

About Dennis SILVERMAN

I am a retired Professor of Physics and Astronomy at U C Irvine. For a decade I have been active in learning about energy and the environment, and in lecturing and attending classes at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UC Irvine.
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