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Let’s talk about herd immunity. I’ve listened to some people argue that the rapid spread of cases is a good thing, and we need to reach herd immunity in Mississippi and elsewhere to survive. I’m not a health care expert by any means, but I am a math guy. And I have thoughts:
The experts say we need 70-80% of the population to get COVID-19 to achieve herd immunity. Let’s assume they’re wrong (it’s certainly possible, they have been before.) Let’s assume they’re being way overly cautious and we actually only need 40% infection for herd immunity.
In Mississippi, our population is 3 million. We’ve had 36,680 cases so far.

We’d need 1.2 MILLION infections to achieve that hypothetical 40% threshold. (Remember, experts say it’s double that.)
Over the last two weeks, our hospital system has started to become stressed to the point of pain. We are seeing the early signs and effects of it becoming overwhelmed. We had to suspend elective surgeries again.
On our worst day of new cases, we had just over 1,000. It has typically been between 700-900 during this most aggressive time.

To get to 40% infections, we’d need 3,187 new cases every day for a full year from today.

We would need to TRIPLE our worst day—every day—for a year.
I’m not one of these guys that immediately dismisses any idea that challenges the expert status quo talking points. I’m pretty skeptical by nature. That’s healthy. But herd immunity is not anything like a realistic solution in the short or mid-term. I wish it was.
Unless you’re willing to go without hospitals after a car wreck or heart attack, we need a different approach. Right now, despite mixed messages at the beginning, it seems like masks are the best bet. They’re a hell of a lot better than widespread shut downs. Please wear one!
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