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That stupid Medium post is going mainstream. Okay, fine, let's go through some data. Why listen to me? Two weeks ago I was at Johns Hopkins for a deposition of one of their bio-statisticians. Critically reviewing medical research data and communicating it is part of what I do. /1
How bad is COVID-19? Here are the raw numbers, by country, for deaths per case. In America, about 1.5% of people confirmed to have it have died. That's in line with the latest analysis of Wuhan (1.4% of symptomatic cases died).

It's deadly, but it spreads like a common cold. /2
How many people in America have SARS-CoV-2? A team at Notre Dame estimated ~22,876 (7,451-53,044) as of March 12. A team at UMass estimated ~54,100 (5,600-125,300).

That was 9 days ago. It has likely doubled since then. Or doubled twice since then. Maybe even three times. /3
The Medium post wrongly claims the CDC says 12% of COVID-19 cases require hospitalization.

The CDC really said 20.7-31.4% hospitalized, 4.9-11.5% in the ICU. UK estimates are similar.

For a virus that spreads as rapidly as a common cold.

Want to see what that looks like?

It looks like this, a hospital completely filled with people on one form of oxygen or another, with beds spilling into the hallways, with healthcare workers exhausted at best and themselves infected at worst. We don't have the capacity for this virus. /5
The Medium post claims coronavirus will "burn off in the summer." Yeah, maybe, there's some preliminary data saying it'll wane in warmer temperatures...

... and then it comes right back in the fall, and still overwhelms our entire healthcare system. /6
And if it's not entirely obvious: if the whole healthcare system is overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases, then it will do a worse job at everything else. Car crashes. Heart attacks. Births. Cancer treatment. Everything and more will be devoted to the killer cold. /7
The answer of course isn't "panic" or "be hysterical."

But, yes, this is just as bad as you're hearing it is, and indeed it's probably worse than you're hearing. Our way of life is going to be different for quite some time until we can contain this.

Below, a deeper dive into just some of the many errors of that Medium post.

And here are the sources for my thread above:

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