Daily Notes: 2020-03-27

Comment of the Day: Joe Barsugli https://www.bradford-delong.com/2020/03/dealing-with-coronavirus-the-hunker-down-and-the-jubilee.html?cid=6a00e551f0800388340240a4f57f77200d#comment-6a00e551f0800388340240a4f57f77200d: 'I agree with Jubilee, but Hunker Down has some problems. While I agree with the broad outline, we simply don't know how much hunkering down is needed to "reach a level that reduces the caseload to what the medical system can currently handle, but should not be pushed far beyond that point." I'm not sure you can fine-tune it. European experience seems to indicate that half-measures are much less than half-effective. Better to hit it hard with all you've got up front and hope you start to see results in 10-12 days. If the current measures prove adequate, then they have to be run for several cycles. China was extreme in its measures and beat the virus back in 6+ weeks. Lightening up too much too soon would lead to a second wave before we are ready to handle it...

...While the immediate goal is to keep the ICUs from being overwhelmed, the goal over the next month should also be to limit the percentage of the population that gets it in the first place. As we go from one in a thousand cases to one in a hundred to one in ten, with a roughly 10 day interval between each order of magnitude, we rapidly approach the worst case scenarios of many epidemiologists, even without overwhelming the hospitals. (Note: doubling in 3 days is almost exactly 10x in 10 days. Overall many places are faster than than if you look at hospitalizations).

I hope I am wrong, but I think you are overly optimistic that we can have adequate testing-tracking-isolation in place and functioning by June 1 without a major nationally coordinated effort, which won't happen. Of course we could have had that if we started taking this seriously in January and avoided most of the economic disruption, but we have a pretty heavy lift to get the case load back to where that is a nationally viable strategy. Can one city or state that has bent the curve go to Jubilee without effectively sealing their borders? Can a single nation?...


#commentoftheday #2020-03-27

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