No question, the number of new COVID-19 cases has been spiking in Virginia in recent weeks, with today’s statistics showing record 1-Day, 2-Day, 3-Day, and 10-Day highs in new cases since the pandemic began back in March. That’s bad news, for sure. Fortunately, there’s also (relatively) good news, which – as you can see from the following two graphs (cumulative hospitalizations/cumulative cases and cumulative deaths/cumulative cases), the percentages of cumulative hospitalizations and cumulative deaths compared to COVID-19 cumulative cases has been declining.
- The percent of cumulative hospitalizations/cumulative cases was at 20.2% on March 19, around 15%-16% for most of April, falling to 10% by the end of May, to <9% by late July, to about 8% by late August, to about 7.5% by late September, to 7.0% by the end of October, and to just 6.4% now. So that’s a massive improvement in terms of the proportion of people testing positive for COVID-19 ending up in the hospital.
- Looking at the percent of cumulative deaths/cumulative cases, that started out at around 2%-3% in March and early April, rose to about 3.5% for a while, then fell below 3% in early June and generally kept falling slowly, to 1.8% now…which is about half the rate we were seeing in May.
- Finally, some more bad news, which is that if you ARE hospitalized for COVID-19, your chances of dying don’t appear to have improved since June…about 28%-30% (cumulative deaths/cumulative hospitalizations). Which is somewhat surprising, at least to me, as I had thought we’d gotten better at treating COVID-19 patients in the hospital. I mean, maybe we have, and maybe something else is going on? Thoughts?