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Some People Think Covid-19 Hospitalizations Are Level

Summary:
Reader Bruce Hall writes yesterday: Cases continue to escalate; deaths do not; hospitalizations are basically level. The hyperbole around cases is unfortunate because infections are not categorized for action since asymptomatic to severe are lumped together. I do not think this assertion regarding current hospitalizations are correct (and by definition, those are not asymptomatic cases, so the argument against using cases numbers does not apply). And where hospitalizations go, fatalities have usually followed. Figure 1: Covid-19 related current Hospitalizations (blue, left scale), fatalities, seven day moving average (red, right scale). Source: Covid Tracking Project, accessed 10/20/20.

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Reader Bruce Hall writes yesterday:

Cases continue to escalate; deaths do not; hospitalizations are basically level. The hyperbole around cases is unfortunate because infections are not categorized for action since asymptomatic to severe are lumped together.

I do not think this assertion regarding current hospitalizations are correct (and by definition, those are not asymptomatic cases, so the argument against using cases numbers does not apply). And where hospitalizations go, fatalities have usually followed.

Figure 1: Covid-19 related current Hospitalizations (blue, left scale), fatalities, seven day moving average (red, right scale). Source: Covid Tracking Project, accessed 10/20/20.

Menzie Chinn
He is Professor of Public Affairs and Economics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison

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