This weekend, that absurd number so many scoffed at back in the spring, comes to fruition.
In the predawn hours of March 30, Dr. Deborah Birx stepped in front of the camera on the White House lawn and made an alarming prediction about the coronavirus, which had, by then, killed fewer than 3,000 people in the United States.
“If we do things together, well, almost perfectly, we can get in the range of 100,000 to 200,000 fatalities,” Birx, coordinator of the White House coronavirus task force, told Savannah Guthrie of NBC News’ “Today” show.
“We don’t even want to see that,” she added, before Guthrie cut her off.
That was the worst case scenario..
The count continues.
The worst case scenario apparently is not done yet.
According to all reasonable reports, the COVID-19 death count surpassed the 200,000 mark on Saturday.
With the case count and death counts now rising in many locations around the United States, the next sobering number is being tossed around amongst many: A surge in the number of new infections in the fall and winter, combined with growing fatigue over social distancing and other public health measures, could result in more than 415,000 deaths in the U.S. by January, according to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, or IHME, at the University of Washington.
x x x
Boris Johnson was hospitalized with COVID-19 earlier this year. If you recall, Britain was on edge with rumors swirling that their prime minister was clinging for life. Public displays of his health suddenly became fearful, with the strong leader showing that adversity almost brought him down.
Now Johnson is publicly stating that his nation is in the second wave of the virus.
The BBC is among the sources reporting that Johnson is bracing the nation for ‘tighter social distancing.’ British media report that the government is trying to avoid a national lockdown..
The plan would aim to avoid a national lockdown but could stop household-to-household contact. The first tier would be the level of measures currently in place in most parts of England now – with social distancing the key aspect. The second tier would involve what is currently being imposed in north-east of England – curfews on hospitality venues and a ban on meetings between households. The final third tier would involve stricter lockdown measures.BBC 18 September 2020
What went wrong in Europe?
Europe’s death rate has been stable for 72 days, according to the ECDC, although Bulgaria, Croatia, Malta, Romania and Spain are seeing death rate increases.
The surge comes just after the summer vacation season, as workers return to city centers and children go back to school.
The World Health Organization blames countries that relaxed restrictions..
Perhaps images like this explain what is going wrong: People are seen dancing to a busker in Leicester Square, central London, on September 12, days before social gatherings were restricted again.
The second wave–or just increase in cases–may have just been inevitable.
Professor Mark Woolhouse, an epidemiologist at the University of Edinburgh, told CNN earlier this month that the initial lockdown was “never, ever going to solve the problem for us in Europe or anywhere else; it was simply deferring it.”
And the world has deferred long enough?
Behold. The second wave.