The State of COVID-19 in D.C.: Getting a Little Worse

On the whole. Wards 2, 4, and 8 are doing a little better, while Wards 3, 5, and 7 are doing worse. Overall, the prevalence in D.C. has increased:

Ward 1-week prevalence 2-week prevalence 1-week % positive 2-week % positive
1 0.039% 0.080% 1.0% 1.3%
2 0.022% 0.050% 0.6% 0.9%
3 0.034% 0.061% 0.9% 1.0%
4 0.081% 0.182% 2.2% 3.1%
5 0.099% 0.189% 2.1% 2.7%
6 0.059% 0.122% 1.0% 1.4%
7 0.109% 0.201% 4.2% 4.9%
8 0.077% 0.181% 2.3% 3.3%
D.C. 0.079% 0.132% 1.9% 2.1%

Only Wards 1 – 3 would be above the German rollback threshold of 50 new cases per 100,000 per week (0.05% in the second column above); D.C. as a whole also exceeds the threshold. We’re slowly losing ground overall, and citywide the prevalence rate is about ten times higher than what would allow us to resume normal-ish activity. Really, the only good news is that we’re doing enough testing.

I’ll have more to say about D.C.’s ongoing failure to lower the curve on Wednesday, but it’s really unclear right now what the strategy is, other than hoping for the best–which isn’t a strategy at all. Since D.C.’s testing and tracing strategy doesn’t seem to be designed to understand spread, but to prevent further spread, we don’t know where how transmission is occurring, which is being used as an excuse to not shut down anything, even as prevalence is rising.

The shame of it all is that, if we went hard at this, we could be back to normal-ish by October easily. D.C.’s problem is that we are four weeks away from solving this–and we are always four weeks away because we aren’t willing to do the obvious things to crush the curve. And, as I’ll note on Wednesday, those who purport to lead us don’t know the right questions to ask.

Anger is still the appropriate emotion.

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2 Responses to The State of COVID-19 in D.C.: Getting a Little Worse

  1. Rick says:

    For comparison, feels similar here in Oregon. Statewide prevalence at the end of May was 0.008. Now it hovers around 0.05 and the strategy seems to be that with enough micromanaging rules and policies the virus will give up and go home. There is no intention to crush the virus, just to simmer along indefinitely until some Medical Miracle appears.

    The bad news is some counties have prevalence in the 0.40 to to 0.50 range. They’re smaller so there isn’t an unmanageable caseload, but it’s is hitting the agricultural workers, First Peoples populations, and others in rural areas hard.

  2. ProNewerDeal says:

    I agree with yall, Mike & Rick. I am incredibly frustrated that the US refused to do the policies that other rich nations & many developing nations have done to crush the curve. covid19-projections dot com (Mr Gu’s site considered the one with the most accurate track record to date) has Estimated Currently Infected Rate (4-8X the official COVID positive tests) at 1.64% in US vs 0.07% in Canada (Aug-16 the most recent update). Looks like the worst other rich nation is Belgium 0.43%. Australia at 0.28% iirc put a lockdown on Victoria state, for an infection level that is probably less bad than most US states. Only 5 US states are below 0.28%, all in the Northeast: NY, NJ, CT, ME, VT.

    I don’t understand the US Power Elite’s lack of seeming rational self-interest.
    1 A nationwide lockdown for 6 weeks with a $3K adult temporary Andrew Yang-style UBI so people do not starve/get evicted.
    2 USPS to drop off N95 or at least surgical mask 5-pk to every residential address, ala Vermont’s policy.
    3 Universal mask required at any indoor store/office/public transportation.
    4 Ban residential evictions until the tested positive numbers hit the German-standard 1-wk 0.010% prevalence level
    5 Ban high-risk activities as deemed by public health expert group or by straight-copying the German public health high-risk indoor activity list unitl the tested positive numbers hit the German-standard 1-wk 0.010% prevalence level, including but not limited to schools, universities, bars, restaurants, churches, sport stadium events, public gatherings above X (50?) persons.

    Sacrifice a hit of 6 weeks for a more profitable next 26 weeks. S&P500 Corporate profits for the next 6 months would be better than NOT doing these policies. Federal poli-trick-ians would be more likely to win their Nov elections after the curve got crushed in 6 wks. Even if per the classic George Carlin rant the US “owners” “do not care about us AT ALL! AT ALL”, (certainly seemingly the case imho every president since at least Reagan through Trump; also Pence, Biden, Harris; & all the big Owner/Funders of the poli-trick-ians like Koch Bros, Adelson, Bloomberg, Wall $treet, etc) for their own Power Elite interests it would be logical to run these policies that are proven effective in Germany & other much more successful-on-COVID nations.

    Why does it seem that US Business & Politics Power Elite don’t act in rational self-interest?

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