The prospective peaks

A former Corona-chan pessimist is revising his expectations for the better:

Government coronavirus advisors say crisis will be ‘over by Easter’ but warn the next two weeks will see a ‘continuous tsunami of cases’ – as they warn a THIRD of deaths are ‘healthy people’

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Professor Ferguson said: ‘London is going to be very difficult in the next two to three weeks.

‘All I would say is, with the lockdown now in place, those numbers are going to start to plateau. The challenge we have is there’s a lag. The people being admitted to hospital right now were infected a week, two weeks, even sometimes three weeks ago, so without doubt the next one [or] two weeks are going to be very difficult.’

I was wondering why Prof. Ferguson was changing his tune until I looked at the Italian statistics and realized what he also must have noticed. Now, I am no medical expert or epidemiologist, but if we simply apply basic math, logic and statistics, and we assume that the cases of infection will follow the statistical bell curve that many historical epidemics have exhibited, we can derive predictive estimates from the fact that Italy appears to have hit its new cases peak on March 21, with 6557 new cases and 793 new deaths. That was on Day 31 of the outbreak, so we can speculate that the Italian crisis will be largely over by April 22.

If the US situation follows a similar curve – which will probably not be the case due to the much larger geographic area – then the current urban hotspots should be hitting their peaks the week of April 5-11 and seeing the crises more or less come to an end around the first week of May.

On the theoretical downside, if the peak has not actually passed and this four-day statistical decline is just an Elliott Wave-style even countertrend, that would indicate that the Italian situation is at least an order of magnitude worse than it presently appears and the crisis will be extended. So, let’s hope that the new case numbers continue to decline.