Coronavirus will have killed 100,000 Americans by the end of this summer, model predicts – The Sun

A NEW model predicts the “first wave” of the coronavirus could kill 100,000 Americans by the end of the summer.

As of Thursday, six weeks into the pandemic, more than 1,080,000 have been infected with the virus in the US and at least 63,000 people have died from it.

The model from the Network Science Institute at Northeastern University also predicts that with stay-at-home measures in place, at least 80,000 to 90,000 will be dead by mid-May.

Alessandro Vespignani, the director of the research lab, told Yahoo News that his model is much higher than official estimates because of the “invisible chains of transmission” of the virus earlier this year.

He said that after tracking travel numbers and other relevant data, he and his associates “have been able to trace the course of potential spreaders who had returned to the country from China and other nations where the virus had spread.”

Vespignani said that social distancing and lockdown order have saved lives, and noted that new cases of COVID-19 have plateaued because of it.

But, he warned, without such measures in place or without proper testing and tracing those who are infected, an dramatic increase in infections and death could happen.

“You have to always keep in mind that without those aggressive social distancing measures we would have an exponential increase,” he said.

Vespignani said roughly 500,000 people would be dead by now of social distancing guidelines weren’t implemented and enforced.

“What we’re living now — this is one battle — it’s not the war,” he said. “The more we are prepared, the better we will fight and the less problems we will have and the less we will have to suffer.”

Vespignani’s team bases its models based on data, and the lab is one of several who are advising government officials about how and when to reopen the country.

He described his lab as a “‘synthetic world’ built using real commuting, flight, transit, educational and population data,” and compared his work and the model to weather predictions.

“You collect a large amount of data on population, where we live, what is the age structure of the population, and then how we travel, how we take international flights, domestic flights, how we commute to work and the schools,” Vespignani told Yahoo.

It maps infection rates and watched it spread within a simulation — showing a projecting path for the virus on a computer model.

This week, the US hit a milestone one million cases of the virus, roughly a third of the global total of infected people.

The number of people dead has surpassed the number of Americans who were killed during the Vietnam War.

President Donald Trump said last week: "We did the right thing, because if we didn't do it, you would have had a million people, a million and a half people, maybe two million people dead."

"Now, we're going toward 50, I'm hearing, or 60,000 people. One is too many. I always say it. One is too many. But we're going toward 50 or 60,000 people."

The virus’ impact in the US could soon be deadlier than any flu season since 1967, as an average of 2,000 people have died each day in April.

The country's worst flu season in recent memory was in 2017 to 2018 season, when more than 61,000 people died, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

But COVID-19 deaths are set to soon overtaken the 1967 numbers — when 100,000 Americans died.

The Spanish flu of 1918 killed at least 50million people and swept the world in three waves.

The first in the spring of 1918, the second in September of the same year, and the third in the spring of 1919.

And the second wave involved a mutated form of the disease — which proved to be far deadlier than the first.

Some predictions have said a second wave could hit the US before the November presidential election.

Source: Read Full Article